The catfish family Pimelodidae is restricted to South America. It is a quite diverse family. Although only about 90 species are known they could hardly be more contrasting. The smallest species (a still undescribed one from the Amazon river) becomes only 2.5 cm long, the largest (Brachyplatystoma filamentosum) becomes 2 metres long. Most species, however, reach 20 – 80 cm in length.
Determination of the species is not easy, because many of them look very different in juvenile coloration compared with the adult coloration. Moreover, also the proportions change drastically during the individual growth.
The species we currently imported from Argentina and Paraguay fits best to the genus Pinirampus. Especially the very long adipose fin which orginates immediately behind the dorsal fin reminds one of Pinirampus (other genera with a comparably adipose fin are Calophysus, Exallodontus, Pimelodina and Propimelodus). The genus Pinirampus contains only one accepted species, eg P. pirinampu, which has a very wide distribution in South America. However, it is not reported so far from Argentina and Paraguay. The fish were sent under the name of Megalonema platanum which has a much deeper body and a different shape of the adipose fin. Due to these findings we name the fish in question Pinirampus sp. “Paraguay”.
The nice colored species seems to stay relatively small. Our largest ones are around 20 cm long. Among each other they are very peaceful. They have a very interesting way of resting: they “sit” on their large ventral fins and the caudal. So they have an angle (compared to the horizontal bottom) of about 30°. When one takes a look on the very large caudal fin it seems plausible that the catfish lurk in this postion for small fish, which they prey on by a “catapult start”. In the aquarium the catfish feed on any frozen food of the right size.
For our customers: the fish have code 280253 on our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively supply to the wholesale trade.
Lexicon: Pinirampus: anagram to the specific name “pirinampu”. pirinampu: not explained in the original description, probably from an indigenous name for the fish.
Text & photos: Frank Schäfer
|Angaben zum Tier|
|Verfügbare Größe in cm||15-20|