Sheepshead minnow

Cyprinodon variegatus

Family Cyprinodontidae - pupfishes

Body deep, compressed, juveniles more slender than adults, males deeper bodied and larger than females; color yellowish to silver with various dark vertical markings, markings vary widely from fish to fish, tend to become obscure in adult males; males become more colorful during breeding season; females with dark spot on dorsal fin; males with dark vertical stripes at base and margin of caudal fins; mouth small, oblique; caudal peduncle thick; tail flat, truncate; most of dorsal fin in front of anal fin base; pectoral fins large reaching past base of pelvic fins.
Similar Species
Body is deep but does not have the concave snout to dorsal fin profile as in the diamond killifish; vertical bars are irregular, not straight or distinct as in other fishes.
Bays, freshwater, rarely in the Gulf
Maximum Size
9 cm (3 1/2 in), common to 3 cm (1 in)
Fin Element Counts
D. 11; A. 10 (explain)
Other Common Names
Previous Scientific Names
State size/bag limits