Western Sand Darter (Ammocrypta clara)


The Western Sand Darter is a very widespread but patchily distributed species found in medium to large rivers of the Mississippi, Ohio, Sabine, and Neches river drainages from Minnesota and Wisconsin south to Texas and east to West Virginia. It is rare in the Tennessee River Drainage and extirpated from the Cumberland River Drainage. All Sand darters are translucent, so they blend in with the sand substrate they live upon. Western Sand Darters can be distinguished by a spine on the rear edge of the opercle (gill cover).