Chandramara chandramara

25. July 2022

In 1822, the most comprehensive book on the fish life of the Ganges River in India to date was published. The author was the Scottish physician Francis Hamilton, who was in the service of the East Indian Company. Hamilton had detailed drawings made of all the fish species he found in the Ganges. His draftsman – Haludar, a young Bengal – was honored for his extraordinary achievements 200 years later and immortalized: the melon barbs have the generic name Haludaria since 2013. Among the many species Hamilton discovered were two small catfish species that Hamilton named Pimelodus chandramara and Pimelodus rama. To this day, these two species remain virtually unknown from a scientific perspective.

These catfishes – their current names are Chandramara chandramara and Rama rama – remain small (around 5-6 cm), prefer to swim in open water and are diurnal. They are very droll and funny aquarium inhabitants that are completely peaceful against tankmates and disregard plants. They are social animals that are best kept in groups of 10-20 specimens. Any common ornamental fish food will be accepted. The water temperature can be between 16 and 26°C. It is favorable to offer different temperatures during the year, cool in winter, warm in summer. As company are suitable e.g. zebra danios (Danio rerio), rosy barbs (Pethia conchonius) and dwarf gourami (Colisa lalia), which all occur in the same habitat.  Any drinking water is suitable for the maintenance of the above species. 

We have also made a small film about these fish, which you can watch here:

For our customers: the animals have code 409002 on our stock list. Please note that we supply only wholesale.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer