In Texas, Buffalo are the ultimate prize. Buffalo are actually not related to the carp (minnow) family but are more closely related to the sucker family. There are three species of Buffalo that we fish for here in Texas, although they range in location and distribution. Smallmouth Buffalo are the most common of the three throughout Texas. They inhabit all of the major river systems in Texas so they thrive in nearly all of the major reservoirs that exist across the state. Compared to carp, the same methods will catch them, but they tend to be more difficult to catch.

The other two species are more rare, Black Buffalo and Bigmouth Buffalo. Black Buffalo have a range limited to only a few lakes in Texas and are difficult to target. Bigmouth Buffalo, however, are located in many lakes and are sometimes caught unintentionally while angling for carp and buffalo. They are more suited to open water filter feeding than the other two species, and their (much larger) mouth faces forward as opposed to downward like the other two species. All three species spend most of their time in deep water,  and are often fished for and caught at depths of 20 feet or more.

Buffalo have a habit of sucking in food items through their mouth and expelling the non-food particles accumulated in the mouth out through the gill rakers, unlike carp. Thus, they can be very tricky to hook when they are feeding tentatively.

There are also many smaller carp-like fishes in the sucker family that are sometimes caught unintentionally by carp anglers around Texas, especially in rivers and riverine lakes. These include suckers, carpsuckers, and redhorses.