Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Siluriformes Siluridae

Scientific Name: Silurus glanis
Species Authority: Linnaeus, 1758
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Wels Catfish
Siluris glanis Linnaeus, 1758 [orth. error]

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-01-01
Assessor(s): Freyhof, J. & Kottelat, M.
Reviewer(s): Bogutskaya, N., & Smith, K. (IUCN Freshwater Biodiversity Unit)
A widespread species with no known major widespread threats. However, the species is locally threatened due to river regulation destruction of shallow spawning sites.
Previously published Red List assessments:
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: North, Baltic, Black, Caspian and Aral Sea basins, as far north as southern Sweden and Finland; Aegean Sea basin, in Maritza and from Stuma to Sperchios drainages; Turkey. Absent from rest of Mediterranean basin. Introduced in Rhône drainage in 1857 and in British Isles during second half of 19th century. Now widely introduced and translocated throughout Europe and Lake Balkhash basin (Kazakhstan).
Countries occurrence:
Afghanistan; Albania; Armenia (Armenia); Austria; Azerbaijan; Belarus; Belgium; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria; China; Croatia; Czech Republic; Denmark; Estonia; Finland; France; Georgia; Germany; Greece; Hungary; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Italy; Kazakhstan; Kyrgyzstan; Latvia; Liechtenstein; Lithuania; Luxembourg; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Moldova; Montenegro; Netherlands; Pakistan; Poland; Romania; Russian Federation; Serbia (Serbia); Slovakia; Slovenia; Sweden; Switzerland; Tajikistan; Turkey; Turkmenistan; Ukraine; Uzbekistan
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Abundant.
Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Habitat:
Large and medium size lowland rivers, backwaters and well vegetated lakes. Spawns in shallow, warm and well vegetated riverine habitats without current.

Lives up to 80 years in the wild. Spawns for the first time at 2-3 years and 1-2 kg. Spawns in April-June, in northern areas until August, when temperature reaches about 20°C. In spawning grounds, males defend small territories and build nests of plant material, dig shallow depressions or clean spawning substrate such as willow (Salix) roots. Nests are defended by males until larvae emerge. Spawns in pairs. During spawning act, the male embraces the female. Eggs hatch in 2-3 days and larvae remain in nest until yolk sack is absorbed (2-4 days). A nocturnal predator, feeding near bottom and in water column. Very sensitive to extra-aquatic sounds. Head sensory canal system allows to track the wakes [a trail of hydrodynamic and chemical signatures left by a swimming fish] of prey up to 10 seconds old over distances up to 55 times the length of the prey. Larvae and juveniles benthic and negatively phototactic, feeding on a wide variety of invertebrates and fish. Adults feed on fish and other aquatic vertebrates.
Systems: Freshwater

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): River regulation destroying shallow spawning sites.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: No information.

Citation: Freyhof, J. & Kottelat, M. 2008. Silurus glanis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T40713A10356149. . Downloaded on 13 October 2015.
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