More
    Categories

    Catfish

    Related Articles

    See-through fish, fish that swims upside down, fish that walk on land, fish that use electricity to kill, and fish that emit sound are but a few of the attractions to be found in this group of fish.

    Character

    A common feature among the majority of catfish is their bottom-dwelling habit. Another characteristic, often missed by aquarists keeping just one as a cleaner, is that many species are quite gregarious and delight in being kept in numbers of their own kind. Many are nocturnal by nature, and so their “normal” activities often go unnoticed, unless they can be fooled into coming out earlier in the evening by altering the lighting times of the aquarium.

    Physical characteristics

    Catfish’s flat-bottomed bodies allow them to hug the bottom of the river or streambed without being swept away by water currents. Catfish are excellent at locating food among the debris on the aquarium floor; taste cells in the barbels assist in this task, and are particularly useful in muddy water or at night when visibility is poor.

    Unlike the majority of other fish, catfish have no scales as such; their skin may be left naked or covered with overlapping bony plates called scutes. They often take in air from the surface, but, unlike the Anabantids, they have no auxiliary breathing organ in the head, and oxygen is extracted from gulped atmospheric air in the hind part of the gut.

    Diet

    Usually omnivorous (and with vigorous appetites), some species are more herbivorous and are sought after by hobbyists as a means of controlling algae. Such species have sucker-like mouths equipped with rasping teeth; in the absence of an algae-covered tank, they require extra green matter in their diet, which can be lettuce, spinach, or even canned peas.

    Reproduction

    Catfish spawn in several ways: corydoras deposit eggs on any flat surface, the eggs being carried to the site by the female between her pelvic fins. The armored catfish, Callichthys callichthys, builds a bubble nest in which to place the eggs beneath a plant leaf. Others spawn on flat surfaces, in pits dug in the gravel, or inside pipes; still others are mouthbrooders.

    Video Credits: The Fish Whisperer
    Image Credits: Milos Prelevic

    Categories

    Other Topics

    Peach-Faced Lovebird

    Overview One of the most popular and available Lovebird is Agapornis roseicollis, also commonly known as the Peach-faced Lovebird...

    Cobalamin (Vitamin B-12) Toxicity

    What Is Cobalamin? Vitamin B-12 (cobalamin) is a cofactor for 2 enzymes and is important for DNA synthesis,...

    Boreal Owl

    The Boreal Owl (Aegolius funereus) is a somewhat mysterious owl of dense northern woodlands. Except when calling at night in very early...

    Peach

    Overview Peaches are considered one of the hardest fruit to grow, particularly for growers who don't use chemical...

    Kittens

    Newborn Kittens At birth, the kitten weighs about 3.5 ounces (2.5 ounces at least, 5.3 ounces at most)....