Piabucus melanostoma

16. October 2023

From Paraguay we received large (10-12 cm), unusual tetras. These elegant animals can be assigned without problems to the genus Piabucus, which according to current knowledge includes three species. Two of them are supposed to occur also in Paraguay, namely P. dentatus and P. melanostoma. In the past, it was thought that the two species were easy to distinguish. The rule was: with black lower lip = P. melanostoma, without black lower lip = P. dentatus. But in a more recent study, workers found that there very well is P. dentatus with a black lower lip. According to these studies, the only sure distinguishing feature is whether there is only one row of teeth in the upper jaw (premaxillary) (= P. melanostoma) or whether there are two rows of teeth (= P. dentatus). Of course we can not see this on the living animal, so we stick to the determination as P. melanostoma.

In the aquarium these extraordinary fish are very interesting animals, which should be offered as large aquariums as possible, in which they can swim out. They are peaceful with each other and with other fishes, but there are only very few reports about keeping them. About sex differences, reproduction etc. has not been reported so far.The species is said to be widespread in South America.However, since our animals originate from Paraguay (some of the pictures show specimens from an earlier import from Argentina), thus quite far in the south of South America, one should not keep them permanently too warm.A temperature range of 18-24°C seems appropriate.They eat willingly every usual ornamental fish food.

For our customers: the animals have code 278934 on our stocklist.Please note that we supply exclusively to wholesalers.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer