Body color varies from silvery-gray on the top to light on the underside, depending mostly on the clarity of the water. The body is marked with dark pigmented spots, which are usually unclear in large adults. Young catfish, under 2- or 3-inches long, often lack these spots. There are 24 to 29 soft rays in the anal fin, and this fin is about two-sevenths the standard length. The posterior margin of the adipose fin is free. The tail is deeply forked, which is unlike all the other catfishes except the Blue Catfish. The eyes are large, but the head is small, slender and sub-conic. The air bladder has two lobes which are laterally paired to look as one at first glance. The upper jaw is slightly longer than the lower jaw.