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Chrysichthys ornatus Boulenger, 1902

Image contributors to this species:

Hippocampus Bildarchiv (1) Chris Ralph (3) Martijn van der Windt (2) Allan James (1)

ScotCat Sources:

Factsheet Etymology = Genus Etymology = Species

Other Sources:

Fishbase  Google Search  All Catfish Species Inventory

Relevant Information:

This is not one of your "Tankbusters" as it will grow only to 9ins (22.5cm) standard length (SL) but in saying that, this is a predator when adult in the aquarium, so you will need to account for this when purchasing this species. It has often been confused with a South American "Pim" from the Heptapteridae family, Goeldiella eques, the "Fox Face Pimelodella". The difference of course is that the African species, C. ornatus, has an extra pair of barbels in having nasal barbels, a shorter adipose fin and a different head shape. Aquarium Care: Not to be trusted with smaller tankmates. Would do better with larger African Tetras or Cichlids. Give it a choice of hiding places to make it feel more comfortable in its surroundings as it can be nocturnal.

Common Name:

Ornate bagrid


Chrysichthys pictus




Africa: Congo River system below Stanley Falls. Type locality: l’Ubangi à Banzyville [et] Monsembé, Haut Congo.


22.5cm. (9ins)


20-25°C (67-77°F)




ScotCat Factsheet no. 119. May 2006.



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