his member of the Callichthyidae genus is as yet not been named
to species. There are at the present (Feb 2012) six named
Scleromystax species, S.
barbatus, S. kronei,
S. lacerdai, S.
macropterus, S. prionotos
and S. salmacis. There is also two C-numbers, this species
and also two CW number CW038
Scleromystax species are found
in the rainforest streams, and not in the open river areas. This
genus is related more to the Aspidoras than the Corydoras
genera. As this genera are found on the south east coast of Brazil
they will do better at lower temperatures.
C113 comes from the coastal area of eastern
Brazil, south of Salvador da Bahia.
The Scleromystax genera was resurrected
by taxonomists (Britto; Marcelo R. Phylogeny of the subfamily
Corydoradinae Hoedeman, 1952 (Siluriformes: Callichthyidae), with
a definition of its genera) during an ongoing study of Corydoras,
Aspidoras and Brochis in 2004. The main criteria
for resurrecting the genera was the cheek bristles on the males.
In addition, Scleromystax differs
from Aspidoras in its reduced ossified portion of pectoral
spine, which is longer than half the length of the first branched
pectoral-fin ray, and in its somewhat more elongate snout. Individuals
of this genus also posses a conspicuous colouration pattern characterized
by small striated blotches all over dorsum and sides of head (less
conspicuous in Scleromystax prionotos).
Scleromystax sp. (C113) - eggs.
The best conditions for keeping C113 is
to keep the males apart if you are housing them in a small tank
as they will quarrel with each other and can cause injuries. I
have males that have only one long pectoral fin and a short damaged
one on the other side due to this aggression. You can of course
keep them together if you have a large tank and plenty of hiding
places for each male.
Lateral ethmoid long; contact between supraoccipital
and nuchal plate; palatine slender; odontodes on preopercular-opercular
region of males.
Males have a cream to white body with reticulated
markings to the head. There is a darker black to dark brown band
running the full length of the body on the lateral line narrowing
to the caudal peduncle. This line breaks into two at the insertion
of the dorsal and extends to the rear of the dorsal fin. Below
this the body is cream coloured. Females are similarly patterned
but with some blotching to the body. There is a small dark blotch
to the base of the dorsal fin in both sexes.
As with most members of the Callichthyidae
they are peaceful and good additions to the larger
"cool water" aquarium set up with maybe other cool water
fish such as White Cloud Mountain Minnows and other fish that are
comfortable with a temperature around the 70°f (21.5°c)
As per the Corydoradinae
sub family with the males chasing the females and clinching in the
time honoured T-position. They will lay their eggs medium to high
up on the glass and are easily rolled off with your fingers after
three days and placed in a small container to hatch with added Methyelene
Blue to stop the eggs fungussing. When they use up their yolk sac
they can be fed very small first foods such as Liquifry no.1 and
then on to fry flake, micro worm and tablet food. I added an airline
to this container to move the water around gently. Change about
50% of the water every day replacing with water from the main breeding
tank and then toping up this tank when it needs replenished, that
way the main tank keeps getting a water change every few days and
the container gets clean top ups from this tank. Remarks:
I have found it easier to keep the males apart as they will be more
interested in quarreling amongst themselves than producing. For
breeding purposes keep one male to two females or one pair to a
The pectoral fins
are longer in the males as in the the females and they also
possess longer dorsal fins.. They also have bristles on
the snout which are very hard to distiguish. The males are
also better marked and coloured.
As with other members of the Corydoradinae
they relish tablet and good quality flake food with frozen bloodworm
a firm favourite. They are also keen on chopped earthworms and
other worm foods such as white worm used sparingly, and grindal
: From the Greek "sclero" meaning hard and the
Latin "mystax" meaning moustache.
R., Phylogeny of the
subfamily Corydoradinae Hoedeman, 1952 (Siluriformes: Callichthyidae),
with a definition of its genera. Proceedings of the Academy
of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia 153: 119–154.
Unpaired bone at the back at the back of the skull, usually
with a crest.
Area between the skull and dorsal
Palatine: Bone which lies laterally in
the roof of the mouth.
Odontodes: Hair - like stuctures on the
: The anterior bone
of the opercular series, forming the border of the cheek.
The bony covering of the gills of
Images: Allan James @