The family Cranoglanididae from
China and Vietnam has not been covered before in our Factsheets
probably because of their rarity in the hobby, but none the less
this a very interesting family to cover and hopefully an interest
to all catfish enthusiasts worldwide.
ranoglanis bouderius is a species of armorhead catfish found
in Kwangsi Province, China. It grows to a length of 43.0 cm SL
and to 2.2 kilograms. It is considered to be a fine food fish
in the Zhujiang River Valley in China.
Cranoglanis bouderius was first
described as Bagrus bouderius in 1846 by John Richardson
based on a Chinese watercolor painting and later Wilhelm Peters
later described Cranoglanis along with a new species,
In 1936 Otto Koller described a new species,
Pseudotropichthys multiradiatus and in 1931 George
Myers synonymized Pseudotropichthys with Cranoglanis,
as well as describing the family Cranoglanididae.
In 1955 the Indian Ichthyologist K. C. Jayaram synonymized C.
multiradiatus and C. sinensis under C.
bouderius, but more recently, C. bouderius and
C. multiradiatus have been treated as separate species.
In the same year Cranoglanis had been considered a
monotypic genus by some, with C. bouderius as the only
C. henrici, described by Léon Vaillant in 1893,
is often overlooked, but is a valid species.
bouderius - head
Strange but true but the Cranoglanididae are closely related
to the North American family Ictaluridae. These two families
are sister taxa in the superfamily Ictaluroidea
Kwangsi-Province in China, Zhu-jiang River
D II/5–6, A ii–iii/26–34,
P I/9–13, V i/10–11. Body elongateand laterally compressed.
Head dorsoventrally de-pressed, bone on top of head naked or covered
withthin membrane. Snout blunt and projected. Teeth villiform. Four
pairs of barbels. Gill openings large. Scales absent. Lateral line
straight and complete. Swimbladder heart-shaped, with three chambers
(Chu et al. 1999).
Threats: Overexploitation. Illegal fishing using electric
shock devices, explosives and poison. The huge Longtan Dam and
numerous smaller dams, may have already driven, and will continue
to drive C. bouderius into decline.
In the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species
it has a tag of Vunerable. It was historically
common in the valley of the Zhu Jiang and especially in the
Xi Jiang (rivers). The population of the fish has markedly decreased
and it is estimated that the species has declined by at least
50% in the last twenty years (K. Cui and H. Zhou 2011). Overfishing
has impacted the species population, as well as agricultural
pollution, and dams. Research into populations trends, distribution,
and threats is needed. A research agency has captive-bred the
species for aquaculture (IUCN Red List).
Conservation actions: Some work has already been done
on the fish’s habit, reproduction and breeding technology.
Artificial propagations has not been successful yet. Wild larvae
are raised in aquaculture (Yu and Shen 2005). An annual fishing
ban is in operation in the whole Zhujiang River System (in place
Olive colored body, gradually become white
starting from the stomach. All fins white grey.
There is not much information
on the keeping of Cranoglanis species but they
are predators so would need to take this into account if
purchasing. Not seen very often in the hobby.
Best kept on own or with larger species
in a large tank as small fish would be seen as food.
Matures after four years. Spawning in schools
between late March and late June, with an intense period in May.
Spawning in batches, water temperature 25–28°C. Build
nests by burrowing in substrate. Eggs laid and protected in nest,
eggs adhesive (Yuand Shen 2005).
Feeds on small fishes, shrimps, aquatic
insects, and invertebrates.
Different name for the same fish.
Dorsal fin: The primary rayed fin(s) on top of
Anal Fin: The
median, unpaired, ventrally located fin that lies behind
the anus, usually on the posterior half of the fish.
Monotypic: Having only one species, such
as a monotypic family of fishes.
Ventral fins: The paired fins, between
the pectorals and the anal fins.
Villiform: Elongated cardiform teeth.
Swimbladder: The air sac that gives fish
buoyancy and balance. Acts as sound resonator in some fish.
Gills: The organs utilized to obtain oxygen
from the water.
Lateral line: A sensory line, along the
sides of the body.
Greek, kranion = skull + Greek, glanis = the name of a kind
Wikipedia contributors. (2018, March 22).
Cranoglanis. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved
12:49, December 20, 2018, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Cranoglanis&oldid=831827824.
Zheng, C.-Y. 1990 Cranoglanididae. p. 294-297.
In J.-H. Pan, L. Zhong, C.-Y. Zheng, H.-L. Wu and J.-H.
Liu (eds). 1991. The freshwater fishes of Guangdong Province.
Guangdong Science and Technology Press, Guangzhou. 589 p.
Froese, R. and D. Pauly. Editors. 2009.
FishBase. World Wide Web electronic publication. www.fishbase.org,
Cui, K. & Zhao, H.H. 2011. Cranoglanis
bouderius. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011:
Downloaded on 20 December 2018.
Nelson, J.S., 1994. Fishes of the world.
Third edition. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., New York. 600
Yang, Lei & Liu, Caixia & He, Shunping.
(2009). Threatened fishes of the world: Cranoglanis bouderius
(Richardson, 1846) (Cranoglanididae). Environmental Biology
of Fishes - ENVIRON BIOL FISH. 84. 157-158. 10.1007/s10641-008-9400-4.
Fishes of China in Coloured Illustrations