The Channel Catfish body is pale bluish-olive above and bluish-white below, with spots that vary from a few to many over much of the body. These spots may not occur on larger fish. Their barbels extend from the chin and upper jaw and they have no scales. Their tails are deeply forked with pointed lobes and both dorsal and pectoral fins have strong, sharp spines. Larger fish may be distinguished from the white catfish by the longer black barbels and more streamlined body form. Their tail is also more deeply forked with a head thinner and less rounded than white catfish.