The large-growing, magnificent Panaque bathyphilus is very variable in coloration. We have at present quite splendid 16-20 cm long animals in stock. With this they are about half grown, as maximum length for P. bathyphilus about 60 cm are given. It goes without saying that these large fish should only be kept in large aquariums.
Like all Panaque, P. bathyphilus from Peru (surroundings of Tingo Maria) is predominantly wood eater. This is another reason why large tanks with strong filtration are necessary, because the amount of feces produced by this nutrient-poor diet is enormous. Among themselves Panaque are not quite without, they can become quite rough. However, L90 is considered one of the more tolerant species in this regard.
For our customers: the fish have code 26480-L 090A-6 on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply wholesale.
We have received some beautifully marked yellowseam catfish. This catfish originates from the middle Rio Jamanxin in Brazil and has not yet been correctly (i.e. scientifically) identified, neither in terms of genus nor in terms of species. However, it is quite possible that this catfish has already been scientifically described; young animals are quite inconspicuous, they are monochromatic brown and do not yet have the distinctive yellow fin seams.
Also the dentition of young animals is “normal”, so it corresponds to the usual dentition scheme of Hypostomus and Cochliodon species, while the beautiful adult animals have a Panaque dentition. But in contrast to Panaque, L360 have no spreadable interopercularodontodes.
Apart from the expected size – the animals will certainly grow over 30 cm long – they are trouble-free, peaceful animals. One should give them, like Panaque, a lot of soft dead wood as food basis in the aquarium.
For our customers: the animals have code 26480-L 360-5 (18-21 cm) on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply to wholesalers.
From Peru we received four specimens of a top rarity: L350. This peculiar fish does not fit any genus of loricariid catfish known to date. It originates from deep, turbid, very fast flowing water of the Peruvian Amazon, where it can only be caught with great difficulty and rarely. It is a carnivorous species whose interesting black and white mouth disc pattern is characteristic of the species. There are occasional snow-white speckles on the ventral side, and the upper side is a pure jet black. The maximum final size is unknown, but specimens 40 cm long have been offered; exporters usually count the caudal fin, but not the very long caudal fin filaments, as part of the length. Our four animals are currently 14-18 cm long.
Sometimes L350 is equated with a species that is anatomically similar to it, but unlike L350 is completely colorless: Hemiancistrus (or Peckoltia) pankimpuju. So far only two specimens of H. pankimpuju are known, and they lack any color pigment. Such bright whte animals have not been offered on the ornamental fish market so far. It is not completely excluded that the raven black L350 discolors at certain times (similar to what is known from golden Parancistrus aurantiacus). However, it does not seem very likely.
For our customers: the fish have code 26480-L 350-6 on our stocklist. Please note that we supply exclusively to wholesalers.
The magnificent panaques of the nigrolineatus complex have long been sought-after aquarium fish. All species seem to grow around 40 cm long. One of the most spectacular species comes from Peru and was given the L-number 418. It is probably identical with the described species Panaquetitan, but since this is not completely certain, the animal is better called P. cf. titan in the hobby. Characteristic for the fish, which exporters call “shampupa” after the river in Peru where they catch the animals, are the broad, light-coloured tail fin seam and the blue-green base colouring.
Shampupa is a very rare species that is always available only in very small quantities. Like all panaques they are specialized wood eaters, so plenty of dead wood is a must for the basic equipment of a panaque aquarium. However, numerous other types of food are also accepted.
All the specimens we have imported so far – regardless of size, although we have never received animals under approx. 14 cm and over approx. 25 cm in length – had the same colour (see https://www.aquariumglaser.de/en/fish-archives/panaque_sp_l418_shampupa_en/). But all 6 specimens of the current import (they are 14-16 cm long) have an additional white-yellow zone in the caudal fin directly at their base.
For our customers: the fish have code 26480-L-418-5 on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply the wholesale trade.
Lexicon: Panaque: after the native name of P. nigrolineatus in Venezuela.
Suggestion of a common name: Shampupa Royal Pleco.
Among the largest loricariid catfish are some of the wood-eating Panaque species. Panaque schaeferi is one of them, the species will certainly grow to about 60 cm long. Since P. schaeferi was described on the basis of adult specimens, the assignment to the young animals belonging to it has never been scientifically confirmed. However, it is assumed that the Panaque from Peru, first named as L90c and later as L203, is the juvenile form of P. schaeferi. The adult P. schaeferi has received the number LDA 65.
Usually the juveniles of L203/L90c do not exhibit a spectacular pattern. Typical for the L90 relationship is a bright “window” in the colouring at the base of the caudal fin, which many of the juveniles show, but which disappears in adult fish. L203/L90c has – in contrast to L90, which is probably identical with the species Panaque bathyphilus – no long extended caudal fin filaments.
Recent shipments of juvenile P. schaeferi, which originates from the entry of the Rio Ucayali into Peru, contain exceptionally beautiful, very colourful individuals. The photographed animals have a size of 6-8 cm. Since each of the animals is drawn differently (some are also “normal” L-90c-typical), we assume individual colour variations and not a new collecting site variation or even new L-numbers.
For our customers: the animals have code 26480-L 203-1 (4-5 cm) or 26480-L 203-2 (6-8 cm) on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply wholesale.
Many fish scientists (ichthyologists) currently reject the concept of the subspecies. They argue that either there are definable characteristics, in which case it is a species, or there are no characteristics, in which case the form cannot be named. However, this concept has only limited relevance to reality; in the case of the large striped loricariid catfish from the relationship group around Panaque nigrolineatus, the Royal Plecos, it has been known for a long time that there are different looking populations in different river systems. They were given the L-numbers L 27 (Brazil: Rio Tocantins), LDA 63 (Brazil: Rio Xingu), LDA 77 (Brazil: Rio Tapajós = Panaque armbrusteri), L190 (Colombia/Venezuela: Rio Meta), L191 (Colombia: Rio Caqueta), L330 (Colombia: Rio Guaviare), L418 (Peru: Rio Tingo Maria), L488 (Brazil: Rio Aripuana); there is also the “Golden L27” from the Rio Araguaia in Brazil without a L-number.
L330 differs from L190 in age in that it develops a dot pattern instead of the longitudinal stripes (small young animals cannot be distinguished) and has considerably larger sensory papillae on the lower half of the mouth disc (compared to L190). L190 is considered to be the “typical” Panaque nigrolineatus, a species which was scientifically described as early as 1877. The occurrences of both L190 and L330 are in the upper reaches of rivers that belong to the Orinoco system, while the third Colombian, L191 (the “green” one, probably belonging to the species Panaque titan) comes from a river that drains towards the Amazon.
Due to the commercial importance of L330 and also because recent molecular studies have shown that L330 and L190 are probably not identical at species level, Armando Ortego-Lara and Nathan K. Lujan have decided to go against the trend and describe the population of the black stripe loricariid from the river system of the Rio Guaviare (L330) as a subspecies of Panaque nigrolineatus. L330 is now correctly named Panaque nigrolineatus laurafabianae, L190 Panaque nigrolineatus nigrolineatus.
The authors explicitly point out that there are specimens of P. n. nigrolineatus which show characteristics of P. n. laurafabianae as well as vice versa, but these are exceptions.
Both subspecies grow very large, well over 40 cm, and feed mainly on wood. As this is a very low-nutrient diet, the animals defecate abundantly. Larger specimens are also often incompatible with each other. One should therefore only buy Panaque nigrolineatus (no matter which form) if one has aquariums of an appropriate size.
Text: Frank Schäfer, photos: Frank Schäfer and Erwin Schraml
From Peru comes a Panaqolus, that is charcterized particularly through the small eye and the long tail fin filaments.
With L351 they got their own code number. Unfortunately L351 is imported only very rarely, because most photos of this species show a darkly colored, unattractive fish. In reality, the animal is very nicely colored after a certain acclimatization! L351 belongs to the genus Panaqolus and becomes only about 15-20 cm long, according to the opinion of several catfish specialists. A large part of the food of these fish is wood, which may never be missing in the aquarium. Because wood eating causes a lot of excrement and thus a lot of dirt (wood is extremely low in nutrients, even if intestinal bacteria make the wood digestible for Panaqolus, the fish have to eat a lot in order to cover their energy requirements), a large filter system must be installed.
For our customers: the fish have code 26480-L 351-3 on our stocklist. Please note that we excvlusively supply the wholesale trade.
The „Full Spotted Royal Pleco“ belongs to the very attractive members of the wood-feeding genus Panaque. The species attains a maximum size of about 40 cm. Sadly in young fish the adult coloration cannot become even guessed, they are striped, like many other members of the genus. Only in halfgrown fish the spotted pattern has developed. We were able again now to import some 15 cm long (standard length, without tailfin) respectively 19 cm (total length, inclusive tailfin) long specimens of L330 from Colombia.
It is very interesting that these only halfgrown fish show some obvious sexual differences. A specimen with a yellow stripe in the caudal fin is – accoding to shape of head and body when looked from top – obviously a male, while the most likely female counterpart has only yellow corners of the caudal fin.
Sadly these comparatively large fish caused a kind of sand storm in the photo tank. Even after the water has been cleared there were attached to the mucus of the body sand particles. So please don´t worry, our fish don´t have an ick (Ichthyphthirius), but only harmless sand granules.
For our customers: the fish have code 26480-L 330-7 on our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively suppyl the wholesale trade. Only very few specimens available!
Text & photos: Frank Schäfer