Microglanis “poecilus”

10. May 2024

The genus Microglanis consists of small to very small catfish with a maximum length of between 2.5 and 8 cm, depending on the species. All species come from South America. Until 1950, only 6 species were differentiated; currently the number of species is 30, with 17 species alone being described after the year 2000. Only 3 species are known from the north of South America, i.e. Colombia, Venezuela and the Guyanas: M. iheringeri, M. poecilus and M. secundus. It is extremely likely that there are still a number of undescribed species there too. In the trade, the Microglanis from Colombia are fairly uniformly referred to as M. poecilus. However, it is very often M. iheringeri or a species that is very similar to M. iheringeri; both hardly differ in color from M. poecilus. M. secundus is also very similar to the species mentioned so far. As can be seen from the introduction, it is currently almost impossible to correctly identify Colombian dwarf bumblebee catfish, but this is not so important, as none of the species appear to exceed 5 cm in total length, and most of them remain considerably smaller. Only those with breeding intentions should take care to always purchase specimens from a single import in order to avoid accidental production of hybrids.

Microglanis are sociable and completely peaceful animals, but very greedy. This must always be taken into account. Fish up to about half the body length of the Microglanis are regarded as food. The dwarf bumblebee catfish are nocturnal and like to hide during the day. After acclimatization, however, they also come out of their hiding places during the day when they are fed. Breeding is rarely practiced, but is possible. These animals do not practice broodcare. The spawn is deposited in portions on aquatic plants etc. In terms of water parameters, Microglanis are completely undemanding, any tap water is suitable for keeping them, but soft and slightly acidic water is required for breeding. The water temperature can be between 22 and 28°C. They will eat any standard ornamental fish food of a suitable size, Microglanis do not care for plants.

For our customers: the Microglanis from Colombia have code 268401 on our stock list. Please note that we only supply the wholesale trade.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer