Species of Pseudacanthicus are also known under their popular name “cactus catfish”, for the species are very spiny and it is no good idea to catch a larger specimen with bare hands. Some species of Pseudacanthicus can reach one metre in length, but there are other species that grow up only to 25 cm. As a rule one must be aware that Pseudacanthicus become bigger than many other common aquarium fish. Larger specimens are quarrelsome against congeneers and so spacy tanks with a lot of hiding places are needed for Pseudacanthicus. On the other hand there are reports of successful breeding of some species in the aquarium. The fish are typical cave brooders. Male are more robust than females (they have especially a broader and heavier head) and have more spines during breeding season.
One of the most popular Pseudacanthicus is L114 which originates from the middle Rio Negro basin in Brazil. This cactus cat was thought to represent the described species Pseudacanthicus leopardus for a long time. However, the real P. leopardus originates from the border region of Brazil and Guyana. There are only very few catchers of ornamental fish in that region and so we are very proud that we were successful in importing a good number of the real P. leopardus in different sizes now. They were collected in the Takutu river that belongs to the system of the upper Rio Branco.
Compared with L114 the fish are much flatter and have a slighly different coloration.
Almost simultaneously the numbers L114 and LDA7 were given for the same fish in different magazines. Both numbers refer to the Pseudacanthicus from the middle Rio Negro. However, when the „real“ Pseudacanthicus leopardus appeared in the ornamental fish trade, the number LDA7 was used for that fish from then on. Despite this is „technically“ wrong, the number LDA7 as a popular name is very well established among hobbyists for Pseudacanthicus leopardus to distinguish it from the similar L114.
For our customers: the fish have code 26480-LDA 007-3 on our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively supply to the wholesale market.
Text & photos: Frank Schäfer