The brown bullhead is a chunky species of catfish that is found from Canada in the north to Florida in the south. Like all catfish in north America, it has eight barbels around the mouth, a fleshy adipose fin, and no scales. This is a common, tasty, and plentiful sportfish. Underappreciated by many anglers,the Brown Bullhead can provide many enjoyable hours of angling fun, and it's a good eating fish as well. Brown Bullheads can grow quite large in good habitat, and are surprisingly tenacious fighters on light tackle.
Other Names: Brown Catfish, Brownie, Common Bullhead, Common Catfish, Horned Pout, Marbled Bullhead, Minister, Mudcat, Marblecat, Mudpout, Northern Brown Bullhead, Red Catfish, Speckled Bullhead. The original Ojibwe name for this fish is "wawaazisii".
Barbels and Spiny Fins: All bullheads have eight barbels around the mouth - which are used for tasting and smelling the water. The barbels are harmless. However, bullheads also have three sharp spines one at the front of each pectoral and the dorsal fin. Watch out for those spines! The spines can deliver a painful sting - they are coated in an irritant toxin that can cause pain and swelling around the wound. Immersing the wound in water that is as hot as the wounded person can tolerate will detoxify the irritant and relieve the pain.