Nijssen & Isbrücker, 1976
hese small 'Corydoras type' fish from the
Callichthyidae family are very similar to Corydoras
but are smaller and slimmer with smaller eyes and have one very
important distinct difference from the latter, of having a dual
fontanel (opening in the head bone), whereas the Corydoras
genus has a single fontanel.
To find out more about these differences you can go to The
Genus Aspidoras in the Ichthyology
section of the ScotCat articles page.
Identifying Aspidoras can be problematic
as most of them (apart from Aspidoras pauciradiatus) have
body marking of spots and blotches on a tan background and unless
you know the precise area in Brazil where they were collected
it can be very difficult. I have over the past few years taken
drawings of species I have kept, and also seen on the show bench,
to differentiate between each species, and will hopefully some
day, to be able to identify them from these sketches.
The picture depicted above shows what is
believed to be A. menezesi although the colouration is
more golden with less spots than the normal form. The fry of this
form have black in the leading rays of the dorsal fin and have
carried this trait into the juvenile stage.
needs a little more care to their husbandry than most Corydoras
species, in that the water parameters should stringently be
adhered to, in that regular water changes of the same chemistry
to keep them in good condition. These fish don't seem to do well
in the hurly-burly of a community tank and would be better placed
in a species tank with strong filtration and well planted, as
they do tend to hide and are nervous if there is no protection
from the open spaces. They also like the temperatures to be on
the lower side of tropical i.e. below 75°f.
If purchasing this nice little catfish do buy at least four, (better
six), as they do better in their own company and tend not to sulk
with their own kind and of course you could have a better chance
of breeding them.
Update 2008: The species that are being imported
as A. menezesi may be instead, Aspidoras
as the captive location for the imported A.menezesi
points to A.taurus which the description of, ties in
with this species.
Dorsal 1/7; Anal ii,5; Pectorals; 1/9; Ventrals
1/5. 26 Dorsolateral body scutes. 23 Ventrolateral body scutes.
6 pre-adipose scutes.
Row of elongate blotches along the side from
the gill cover to the caudal peduncle. The posterier blotches may
be united. The upper back is dusky, perhaps with some blotches or
showing a marbled pattern. The lower portion of the body is generally
unpigmented. The dorsal fin has some blackish markings and the caudal
fin is banded.
Inoffensive catfish which will suffer at the
hands of aggressive tank mates. Will
do well in a species tank or a community tank with smaller inmates
such as tetras and rasboras. Best to keep in a shoal of at least
Has been bred. Similar to Corydoras
in this respect but they do tend to eat their eggs, so removing
parents or eggs after spawning is a good idea. They lay their eggs
in Java moss or on the aquarium glass and you can raise the young
as per the Corydoras genus.
Prefer live food such as newly hatched brine
shrimp but will also take frozen food and good quality flake food,
plus tablet food.
David; Catfishes of the World
Aspidos = shield; doras = cuirass
menezesi: Named in honour of its
collector, R.S. de Menezes.
Burgess, W.E., 1989 An Atlas of Freshwater and
Marine catfishes: a preliminary survey of the Siluriformes. T.F.H.
Publications, Neptune City, New Jersey
Nijssen & Isbrücker; 1976, Key to the Species of
Ingo Seidel @