Silver Chub
  • Side view adult.
  • Side view adult.
  • Side view adult.
  • Top view adult.
  • Bottom view adult.
  • Head-on view adult.
  • Close-up flank.
  • Close-up head.
  • Close-up mouth and snout.
  • Close-up tail.
  • Close-up dorsal fin.
  • Close-up anal fin.
  • Close-up pectoral fin.
  • Close-up pelvic fin.
  • The silver chub has a solid silver body, 37-47 lateral line scales, a subterminal mouth, and white edging on its lower tail.
  • Close-up snout: The mouth is subterminal, with thin fleshy lips and a barbel at the corners of the mouth.
  • Close-up tail: There are white fin rays on the lower caudal lobe.
  • Close-up mouth: The mouth is subterminal mouth without a frenum.
  • Side view of a young-of-year: Juveniles are similar to adults; YOY are slightly more elongated with proportionally larger eyes.
  • Alternative side view of an adult.
  • Alternative side view of an adult.
DescriptionSimilar Species
Minnows (Cyprinidae)
Mouth and Snout: Mouth subterminal without any teeth. Small, inconspicuous barbels at the corners of the mouth. Thin fleshy lips, no frenum connection upper lip to snout. Body Pattern: Sides silvery without any obvious markings; white belly. Fins clear, although tail lightly pigmented except for ventral 3-4 rays, making the lower edge of the tail appear lighter. Body Shape: Fusiform, almost round in cross-section, with ventral area slightly dorso-ventrally flattened. Typical adult size is 100-150 mm TL (4-6 in), with a maximum of about 225 mm (9 in).
Forked tail. Single dorsal fin with 8 rays and no spines. Pelvic fins abdominal. No adipose fin. Anal fin with 7-8 rays and no spines.
Distinguishing Characteristics
Solid silver body without markings. Subterminal mouth with inconspicuous barbels at the corners of the mouth. 8 dorsal rays. 37-47 cycloid lateral line scales. About 28 scale rows around body. See also similar species information.
Breeding Adults
Males have small tubercles on pectoral fins.
Similar to adults.
None known from Wisconsin.
Compare Similar Species
Chub, GravelSubterminal mouth; thin fleshy lips; no frenum
Chub, ShoalInferior mouth; thin fleshy lips; no frenum
Chub, SilverSubterminal mouth; thin fleshy lips; no frenum
Dace, Blacknose WesternSubterminal mouth; thick fleshy lips; frenum present
Dace, LongnoseInferior mouth; thick fleshy lips; frenum present
Minnow, SuckermouthInferior mouth; thick fleshy lips; no frenum
Stoneroller, CentralSubterminal mouth; ridge on lower jaw; no frenum
Stoneroller, LargescaleSubterminal mouth; ridge on lower jaw; no frenum
Sucker, WhiteInferior mouth; thick fleshy lips; no frenum
Chub, GravelInconspicuous
Chub, ShoalShort but conspicuous
Chub, SilverInconspicuous
Dace, Blacknose WesternInconspicuous
Dace, LongnoseInconspicuous
Minnow, SuckermouthNone
Stoneroller, CentralNone
Stoneroller, LargescaleNone
Sucker, WhiteNone
Body Pattern
Chub, GravelX, W, & Y markings
Chub, ShoalPepper-like spots
Chub, SilverSolid silver
Dace, Blacknose WesternMottled and/or lateral stripe
Dace, LongnoseMottled and/or lateral strip
Minnow, SuckermouthLateral stripe (may be faint)
Stoneroller, CentralMottled and/or lateral stripe
Stoneroller, LargescaleMottled and/or lateral stripe
Sucker, WhiteSolid, spotted, or mottled
Lateral Line Scales
Chub, Gravel38-43
Chub, Shoal36-40
Chub, Silver37-47
Dace, Blacknose Western60-75
Dace, Longnose61-75
Minnow, Suckermouth43-51
Stoneroller, Central47-58
Stoneroller, Largescale41-48
Sucker, White39-115
Circumferential Scales
Chub, Gravel~ 32
Chub, Shoal~ 28
Chub, Silver~ 28
Dace, Blacknose Western~ 52
Dace, Longnose~ 54
Minnow, Suckermouth~ 34
Stoneroller, Central38-50
Stoneroller, Largescale29-38
Sucker, White~32-~90
Dorsal Rays
Chub, Gravel8
Chub, Shoal8
Chub, Silver8
Dace, Blacknose Western8
Dace, Longnose8
Minnow, Suckermouth8
Stoneroller, Central8
Stoneroller, Largescale8
Sucker, White9-15
Similarity Index
Chub, GravelModerately similar
Chub, ShoalModerately similar
Chub, SilverN/A
Dace, Blacknose WesternModerately similar
Dace, LongnoseModerately similar
Minnow, SuckermouthModerately similar
Stoneroller, CentralModerately similar
Stoneroller, LargescaleModerately similar
Sucker, WhiteModerately similar
Sucker, WhiteAll suckers at the juvenile stage (Catostomidae: Catostomus, Hypentelium, Minytrema, Moxostoma) are moderately similar and all criteria as described for the white sucker apply.