For the first time we can offer a good number of German offspring of the freshwater stingray Potamotrygon orbignyi. Because of the extreme variability in colour this species, which was already scientifically described in 1855, is difficult to determine. The type specimen that Castelnau had at hand came from the Rio Tocantins in Brazil. As there are rays of this type in practically the whole of tropical South America east of the Andes, the question now is whether they all represent the same species, or whether they are in fact not just similar-looking but different animals.
The offsprings now show very nicely that the high colour variability, which is observed in imports, also occurs in the offsprings. From strongly patterned to almost monochrome ochre-coloured animals everything is represented. As a constant colour feature, a dark line behind the spiracle (i.e. the gill opening on the backside) shows up; possibly this inconspicuous detail plays a bigger role in the determination than was previously thought. After all, this colour feature is also visible in the drawing of the type specimen from 1855, which, as a dry preparation, hardly shows any colour features.
We got one single specimen of an extremely unusual ray from Peru; it is a female. In terms of colour, it is completely similar to a ray that is called P. sp. Mantilla and that we previously received from Paraguay (https://www.aquariumglaser.de/en/fish-archives/potamotrygon-sp-mantilla-ray-en/). It may be a rare colour variation of the Potamotrygon tatianae, which was described in 2011 (this species was usually assigned to P. castexi before it was described and exported from Peru as “Otorongo” or “Tigrillo” ray). In any case this beautiful animal is a fish for people with a thirst for research and a very large aquarium, because it can be expected that the animal will reach a good 60 cm disc diameter.
Potamotrygon orbignyi belongs to the comparatively smaller species and reaches “only” about 35 cm disc diameter.
For our customers: the offspring of P. orbignyi have code 282673 and the Mantilla Ray code 282534 on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply wholesale.
This freshwater stingray lives endemically in the Rio Negro system in Brazil and is or was the most often imported species of Potamotrygon from Brazil at all. However until recently they fish were wrongly identified as P. histrix, a different species that is not kept in aquaria at all and occurs in southern South America. The type specimen of P. histrix was collected in Argentina. In fact P. wallacei – which is collected usually around Barcelos for aquarium purposes – is the best suited species of Potamotrygon for private aquaria, because it is the smallest species of the genus Potamotrygon at all. The disc diameter hardly ever exceeds 30 cm in this species. This means that P. wallacei also needs large tanks, but most of the remaining species of freshwater stingray become at least double as large, many even much larger.
Since january 2017 all species of Potamotrygon from Brazil and Colombia have to be exported only with CITES certificates, for these countries have placed the fish on appendix III of CITES. Although this means that the species can still be traded the situation is insofar unsatisfying for breeders of Potamotrygon as they now have to witness that their bred specimens are not descendends from illagal imported fish from Brazil or Colombia when the breeders want to export their animals out of the EU. Most bred specimens, however, do not stay in the EU because the market here is much too small.
Finally we were able now to import a number of P. wallacei from Brazil again. It took about one year for the authorities to react on the new situation and to supply the ornamental fish exporters with the CITES certificates needed for legal exportations.
For our customers: the animals have code 282202 (10-12 cm) and 282203 (12-15 cm) on our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively supply the wholesale trade.
received extremely beautiful German bred Black Diamonds. Moreover the
fish are sorted by pair! The Black Diamond is a variety of Potamotrygon
leopoldi that originates from the upper Rio Xingu in Brazil. These
splendid stingrays attain a maximum size of about 40-60 cm disc width.
should never forget that the poison of these stingrays is quite strong.
Never ever a Potamotrygon will sting the keeper due to aggression, but
the funny animals become very tame. Sometimes one tends to forget that
even the tamest animals can become frightened by chance and then it is
possible that it stings.
these hints should not serve as an argument not to keep stingrays. In
opposite, everyone who has a tank spacious enough should at least once
in a lifetime try to keep them. They are really worth it!
For our customers: the fish have code 282412 on our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively supply the wholesale trade.
Funny enough: some of the most popular species of a group in the trade are often totally unknown to science! This is for example the case in P. “hystrix” from the Rio Negro basin in Brazil. This species stays comparatively small – around 30 cm disc width – and is thus quite popular in the hobby. Nevertheless it represents a scientifically undescribed species of Potamotrygon. The “real” P. hystrix originates from Argentina and is not kept in aquaria at all.
The taxonomy of the black river stingrays is very confusing. Three scientifically described species do exist:
Potamotrygon henlei (described from the Rio Tocantins), P. leopoldi (described from the Rio Xingu), and P. garrapa (described from the Rio Branco).
In P. henlei several varieties exist that possibly represent different, separate species. All specimens from the Rio Tocantins have large, white spots. Nevertheless the fish from the Rio Tocantins represent two different species that cannot be told apart externally, but only by studying the teeth. These are very different and the feeding habits of both species are very different, too. P. henlei from the Rio Tocantins can currently be imported legally from Brazil.
The very beautiful small spotted variety from the Rio Tapajós (the city of Itaituba is situated at the Tapajós) is prohibited for exportation currently. So these fish are available only via bred specimens. We are glad that we can offer three of them now.
Wether the Tapajós/Itaituba fish belong to the biological species P. henlei or not is under investigation. Hobbyists call them P14. This is a bad decision, for the “real” P14 is a variety of P. leopoldi from the Xingu, but we can do nothing against it.
We are happy that even so special fish as these large-growing black stingrays are (they become at least 30-40 cm broad and need a real lot of space) are bred by specialized breeders and so the wonderful animals stay available – at least in small numbers – for the hobby.
For our customers: the fish have code 282413 on our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively supply the wholesale trade.
Lexicon: Potamotrygon: means “river Trygon”; Trygon is the name for stingrays used in ancient Greece. henlei: dedication name for the important anatomist Friedrich Gustav Jakob Henle (1809 – 1885).
We have received two beautiful stingrays from Peru which were collected in the Rio Ucuyali. Both specimens have a disc width of about 15-20 cm and are males. According to the grade of development of their sexual organs the species grows to a much bigger size. The fish do not fit any scientific description published so far and thus represent either a species of Potamotrygon new to science or a natural hybrid.
For our customers: the animals have code 282974 on our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively supply the wholesale trade.
Lexicon: Potamotrygon: ancient Greek, means “a Trygon that lives in rivers”; Trygon is another genus of ray.
Currently we have a great selection of wonderful river stingrays from Paraguay belonging to that species in stock. As in all river stingray species, each individual has its own colour pattern, which differs clearly from all other congeneers. This is one of the reasons why species can only be distinguished with great difficulties in Potamotrygon. Moreover there is strong evidence (DNA-analyzes, colouration) that the species hybridize in nature .
Potamotrygon cf. falkneri belongs to the big species of river stingrays. Specimens of more than 60 cm disc width are known. It is very interesting that there exist dwarf males that reach sexual maturity at only 20 cm disc width while other males are unripe even at 40 cm disc width. Sexual maturity can easily be recognized by the size of the sexual organs, the so-called claspers.
For our customers: the animals have code 282955 on our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively supply to the wholesale market.
The export stop of freshwater stingrays (Potamotrygon) has ended and so the very much sought after black species (P. henlei and P. leopoldi) are regulary available now again.
Beside these Brazilian black rays we have astonishing Flower rays (P. schroederi) from Colombia and Venezuela, fantastic „King Marble”and Fire Spot” from Colombia (called P. motoro in the trade, but are in fact the species described as P. boesemani recently) and very nice „Tigrillos” (P. castexi) from Peru.
In all these rays each indivial animal has a different colour pattern. That is the reason why our customers get always actual photos of the fish we have in stock. And also the pictures you see right here are not „any” photos, but exactly the fish in our house.
March 2002: Just today we got from west-africa a few pieces of DASYATIS MARGARITA, the daisy stingray. These are found in brackish & freshwater. The ones we got were caught in pure freshwater. It is for us, Aquarium Glaser, the first time that we got this fish!(Photo F. Schäfer, Text K. Diehl)
Recently we could import this strongly at Potamotrygon schroederi reminding ray from Colombia. Similar as P. schroederi it possesses a strong tail and bright points, which resemble a flower pattern. The Orinoco and its tributaries are the origin of the so called Flower – Rays. Their maximum size might be approximately 60 – 70 cm, for a successful maintenance you need aquariums with a very large surface area (several square meters). The tank should contain a sand layer and a sufficient free swimming area. In their requirements for food they can be a little delicate, mostly they like frozen or living worms. Best for socialization will do other ray species.(Photo F. Schäfer, Text K. Diehl)
The Black- or Eclipse-Ray is an endemic species from the Rio Xingu in Brazil. This is definitely one of the most beloved rays in the aquatic hobby. This ray is relatively easy to maintain. He will adapt fast to his new captive surroundings and will start eating quickly. This species can be housed very well with other ray species, although the Black Ray can get somewhat aggressive towards other rays of the same species. The Black Ray will eat all kinds of commercially available fish food including frozen or fresh fish fillet. It has even been noticed that this fish eats pellet food, which was given to other tank mates. P. leopoldi has already been bred in captivity. Rays are live bearing cartilaginous fish and the young are completely developed directly after birth and have a length of approximately 10 cm. Adult individuals can reach a final body width of more then 45 cm(Photo: Frank Schäfer, Text: Izaak den Daas)
September 2006: From Potamotrygon menchacai, the tiger stingray, we could import a big, very beautifully patterned, female animal with approximately 60 cm in diameter. Tiger-rays can be colored quite differently and particularly can differ in the contrast. Our tiger rays come from Peru, through size and scrutiny, they certainly are among the most impressive “ornamental-fishes.” A basin with a big base is required for keeping these giants, at best several square meters should be provided for them.
This freshwater ray originates from Paraguay. The multitude of forms and colours never stops to amazes one. In the past the scientific description of freshwater rays used to be done according drawings without any conserved specimens from natural museum history collections. The classifications of live animals by such limited descriptions are almost impossible to make.(Photo: Frank Schäfer, Text: Izaak den Daas)
The ghost of Maracaibo. So a novel by Gabriel Garcia Marquez could be named, here however it is about a newly imported ray. Few specimen of these with Potamotrygon yepezi related species reached us last week from Venezuela. There they inhabit muddy bank sections in shallow, clouded waters in the supplies of lake Maracaibo. They can reach a size of more than 40 cm and therefore they need roomy aquaria, which should have a as large as possible surface area. After successful acclimatizing they are strong eaters, which can devour large quantities of food as e.g. mosquito larvae, worms or shrimps. Because it is about a new imported species/variety there is at present no further information. Thus here is still a lot to discover!(Photo F. Schäfer, Text K. Diehl)
From one of the most sought – after of the Amazonian stingrays in the hobby, Potamotrygon sp. “pearl” we could offer first European bred offsprings. Pearl rays got their names for the repeating pattern of pearl-like spots within black rings covering its dorsum. Their origin is the Rio Tapajos where it share its biotopes with P 14. If one holds Perl rays together with other ray species, their high assertiveness is noticeable. They are able to dominate substantially larger individuals of other species. For the successful maintenance an aquarium with a surface area as large as possible has to be selected. On the bottom a sand layer is to be provided. Well acclimatized rays have no special requirements for the water parameters. A varied, strong food is importantly therefore a good filtering must also be ensured. As tank mates Pseudoplatystoma and Sorubimichthys species will do fine.(Photo F. Schäfer, Text K. Diehl)
July 2005: During the night from Sunday to Monday it was about time: We got three babies. About five weeks ago we had received a female from Pantanal River and we immediately noticed on arrival that this fish was not alone: It was pregnant. After five weeks now of intensive care, these three babies were safely born in the night mentioned above. Their size is approx. 8 to 9cm Ø. The mother is approx. 35cm tall and was put into another tank right after delivery. It is noticeable that the young ones show much different markings than their mother. The father of the little ones could not be found out anymore.