t has been a while now since we travelled
"down under" for our monthly cafish fix, in
fact nearly 2 years have passed since May 2007
when we wrote
about the "Coral Catfish, Plotosus
So for March 2009 we
have arrived, with a little bit of help from the Australian fish
Life, to one of the more managable sized members of the Plotosidae
family, "Rendahl's catfish"
One of the sure fire methods of identifying
this species of Porochilus and also seperating
it from Neosilurus is by the eye being closer to the
mouth on the former and also the steepness of the head up to the
insertion of the dorsal fin, and the innner side of the pectoral
spine being serrated. You can see the closeness of the eye to
the mouth in the lower image.
In the aquarium they like company of their
own species. They also really like plants to hide in, water sprite
and long strands of the plant Vallisneria. seem to be well appreciated.
In rocky tanks they often bash their noses when they get stressed,
and dart about, so a planted tank would be a good idea. A substrate
of gravel or sand would suffice with the appropriate filtration.
They tend not to reach their full potential size in the aquarium
and 15cm (6ins) would probably be the norm.
Occurs in billabongs and streams in slow
to fast-flowing water that is clear to turbid with rock, gravel
or sand bottoms.
Not seen for sale in the U.K. as Australian
cats are not often for sale and if so, down to an odd few Neosilurus
species. A nice peaceful catfish and would make a change from
Small, relatively short anterior dorsal fin,
composed of a sharp spine and 5-7 soft rays; second dorsal and anal
fins confluent with caudal fin, composed of 104-127 rays; pectoral
fin with sharp spine and 9-11 soft rays; anterior nostrils above
upper lip; pectoral spine bumpy or barbed on inner side. Head concaved
with eyes in close proximity to the mouth.
Overall colouration ranges from a uniform
or mottled dark grey to a pale yellowish-brown (occasionally white),
usually with a golden sheen.
As an Australian native fish they would de
well with the larger Rainbow fishes but be sure to keep them in
a relatively large tank over 3ft in length.
They breed in the early wet season (December-January)
and the parents and juveniles migrate back upstream into refuge
In their native habitat they feed on aquatic
insects, microcrusttaceans and molluscs. In the aquarium they will
eat most foods such as frozen bloodworm
primary rayed fin(s) on top of the body
Pectoral fin: The paired fins after head
and before anal fin.
Anal fin: The fin forward from the anal
Holed lip (refers to
position of nostrils).
Named after Rendahl.
|G.R. Allen, S.H.
Midgley, M. Allen; Field
guide to the Freshwater Fishes of Australia, Western Australian
Museum 2002. 410p.
First image: © Dave
Second image: Ombry