Rhamdia quelen (Quoy
& Gaimard, 1824)
n the closing out of the year 2013 and the arrival of 2014 we
have the last factsheet of the year and an insight into a species
that over the many years of keeping various species of Catfish,
I have yet to encounter the "Max Cat". Odd this as I
have kept larger cats over the years including Sorobim lima,
the larger varieties of Synodontis and the odd Hemibagrus
species and also Chrysichthys nigrodigitatus which can
get to a fair old size. I know some of the Hemibagrus
species from the Bagridae family can get quite aggresive and Rhamdia
quelen from the Heptapteridae family can also go down this
route and be quite feisty..
quelen - adult
from Rio Purus
Rhamdia quelen used to be placed
in the close family Pimelodidae. This is possibly the the most
widespread of the numerous species of Rhamdia. There
is even a blind cave-dwelling version from Trinidad and another
described in 2005 as Rhamdia enfurnada, and is described
from the Gruna do Enfurnado, Serra do amalho, southwestern Bahia
State, middle São Francisco River basin. Troglobitic (cave
dwelling) Rhamdia catfishes encompass at least eight
taxa: R. quelen urichi (= Caecorhamdia urichi Norman,
1926), R. laticauda typhla Greenfield, Greenfield &
Woods, 1982, R. reddelli Miller, 1984, R. zongolicensis
Wilkens, 1993, R. macuspanensis Weber & Wilkens,
1998, R. laluchensis Weber, Allegrucci & Sbordoni,
2003, R. guasarensis DoNascimiento, Provenzano &
Lundberg, 2004, from Venezuela, and the species described herein
from Brazil. The form of R. quelen found in the Guacharo
cave in Trinidad has been given the subspecies name of R.
quelen urichi (Norman, 1926) Mees 1974. There is conflicting
views that it should be a species in its own right as R. urichi,
which was suggested by Silvergrip (1996). Another observation
at the cave mouth said it was possible to observe all degrees
of pigmentation and eye morphology, from pure quelen
at the entrance to pure urichi at the end of the cave
(Price and Endler, 1983)
There are at present 11 species of Rhamdia with 8 of
these being in the Brazilian territory.
quelen - juvenile
Aquarium Care: Can be
aggresive with one another which can lead to torn fins (see image
above) but this trait may have something to do with the competition
for food and the lack of hideing places.(Bichuette, M. E. and
Trajano, E ; 2005). In the aquarium you should treat this species
as you would any "Pim" and house them with tank mates
that are the same size or larger and who occupy a different layer
of the tank be it mid water or top. Provide plenty of hideing
places if you intend to keep more than one individual.
Head moderately depressed, eyes small. Mouth
wide and terminal. Maxillary barbels long, extending beyond dorsal
fin. Pectoral spine stout, with serrations on posterior edge; adipose
fin long and low.
Ground colour of head and body grey/brown,
lightly marbled all over except for the underside which is light
grey. All the fins are light brown with the exception of the adipose
fin which is the same colour as the body.
Not suitable to be housed with smaller species
but should fit in with South American Cichlids and larger Characins
in a spacious tank.
Not reported in the aquarium but
fish were subjected to induced reproduction through hypophysation
using a crude common carp pituitary extract. Rhamdia quelen,
has been studied and shownto be able to survive cold winters and
grow fast in the warm summer (Barcellos, Kreutz, Quevedo, Fioreze,
Cecirato, Soso, Fagundes, Conrad, Baldissera, Bruschi & Ritter
2004). Siluriformes, including R. quelen, are useful
for aquaculture because of their texture, quality of flesh and
high carcass yield (Ferreira, Nuner, Luz, Reynalte-Tataje, Esquivel
& Restrepo 2001). The male's reproductive apparatus includes
multi-lobed testicles and accessory organs for secretion and storage.
Fertilization is external. Non-sticking demersal eggs (1.1 to
2.8 mm diameter) are laid down, hatching after about 48 hours
at 22°C. Ten days later, the larvae weigh approximately 100
mg but growth is slow (0.5 to 1.15 g per day).
Not fussy so should be fed the usual aquarium
foods such as flake, tablets, pellets, frozen and live food. Provide
a varied diet.
Brazilian vernacular name, Nhamdia/Jamdia
after Abbe Quelen, who accompanied Quoy and Gaimard on their
M. E. and E. Trajano ; 2005. A new cave species
of Rhamdia (Siluriformes: Heptapteridae) from Serra do Ramalho,
northeastern Brazil, with notes on ecology and behavior.
Neotropical Ichthyology, 3(4):587-595, 2005
Bockmann, F.A. and G.M. Guazzelli,
2003. Heptapteridae (Heptapterids). p. 406-431. In R.E.
Reis, S.O. Kullander and C.J. Ferraris, Jr. (eds.) Checklist
of the Freshwater Fishes of South and Central America. Porto
Alegre: EDIPUCRS, Brasil.
Marcelo BrunoVilaca Campos
Gomes,Yuri Simoes Martins, Yoshimi Sato, Elizete Rizzo &
Nilo Bazzoli. 2009. Early development of the silver
catfish Rhamdia quelen (Quoy & Gaimard, 1824) (Pisces:Heptapteridae)
fromthe Sa˜o Francisco River Basin, Brazil.
Froese, R. and D. Pauly. Editors. 2009.FishBase.
World Wide Web electronic publication. www.fishbase.org,
Ferraris, C.J. Jr., 2007. Checklist of
catfishes, recent and fossil (Osteichthyes: Siluriformes),
and catalogue of siluriform primary types. Zootaxa 1418:1-628.
Catfish Association Great Britain; D.L./M.S.
/7/79. Page 14.
Proudlove G.S.; 2006. Subterranean Fishes
of the World. An Account of the subterranean (hypogean)
fishes described up to 2003 with a bibliography 1541-2004.
International Society for Subterranean Biology Moulis. 300p.
Pertaining to the upper jaw. (maxillary barbels)
Pectoral fin: The paired fins
just behind the head.
Adipose fin: Fleshy finlike projection without
rays, behind the rayed dorsal fin.
© Enrico Richter @
Pimelodus quelen, Pimelodus namdia, Pimelodus sebae, Rhamdia
sebae, Heterobranchus sextentaculatus, Pimelodus hilarii, Rhamdia
pentlandi, Pimelodus pentlandii, Rhamdia hilarii, Pimelodus
deppei, Pimelodus musculus, Pimelodus sellonis, Pimelodus stegelichii,
Silurus sapipoca, Pimelenotus vilsoni, Rhamdia vilsoni, Rhamdia
wilsoni, Pimelodus cinerascens, Rhamdia cinerascens, Rhamdia
godmani, Pimelodus godmanni, Pimelodus micropterus, Pimelodus
wuchereri, Rhamdia baronismuelleri, Pimelodus baronismuelleri,
Pimelodus wagneri, Rhamdia wagneri, Rhamdia bransfordii, Pimelodus
cuyabae, Pimelodus parahybae, Pimelodus queleni cuprea, Rhamdia
guatemalensis oaxacae, Rhamdia oaxacae, Rhamdia depressa, Rhamdia
guatemalensis depressa, Rhamdia barbata, Pimelodus boucardi,
Rhamdia heteracantha, Rhamdia heteracanthus, Rhamdia nasuta,
Rhamdia branneri, Rhamdia branneri voulezi, Rhamdia mounseyi,
Rhamdia riojae, Rhamdia microps, Rhamdia pubescens, Silurus
rivularis, Rhamdia micayi, Rhamdia quelen urichi, Caecorhamdia
urichi, Caecorhamdella urichi, Rhamdia guatemalensis muriei,
Rhamdia guatemalensis decolor, Rhamdia guatemalensis stygaea,
Rhamdia saijaensis, Rhamdia sebae martyi, Rhamdia lehmanni,
and South America: Mexico
to central Argentina. Type locality: Peru,
Depto Loreto, right bank quebradita tributary to R. Samiria
between Caño Pastos and Hamburgo.
| 6.0 - 7.0.
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