months factsheet centres on one of the most beautiful
members of the Mockikidae family and perhaps maybe
the nicest looking catfish on the block!.
I don't apologise
for revisiting Africa again, and to my mind, along
with the Corydoras species from South America,
the Syno's are a very special and interesting group
and hopefully we will see an upsurge in interest again
in these wonderful cats. We will perhaps not return
to the days of the early eighties again when Synodontis
like this months subject would cost you an arm and
a leg and quite possibly a full weeks wages to own
this beauty above.
is only one in three species in this family that has
filaments on their maxillary barbels as well as the
mandibular, the other two are, S.
clarias, and S.
flavitaeniatiatus is basically an easy species
to keep as it won't uproot your plants and as such
can be kept in a planted aquarium. They are not aggressive
so you can keep a few of them in a large community
tank along with larger tetras such as the Congo Tetra
from the same continent. As with all members of this
family they can be territorial so must give them places
to hide during the day such as rockwork, pipes or
driftwood, then you will see them venturing out during
the day for sorties.
Republic of the Congo in the Stanley pool
now known as the Malebo pool which is a widening
of the Congo River about 570km from its confluence
to the South Atlantic Ocean.
The Pyjama cat
is well named due to its rather garish outfit but
I stress that I don't own Pyjama's of this nature
:-) It also goes under another common name of the
Orange Striped Squeaker owing to the colouring and
the common name of "Squeakers" given to
the Synodontis genus by the native people's,
due to the sounds made when taken out of the water.
Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire), Kinshasa,
Stanley Pool, in the upper Congo River near Brazzaville.
Body compressed, head slightly
depressed. Three pairs of barbels. Maxillary barbels
with tiny ramifications, mandibular barbels with small
ramifications. Dorsal fin spine smooth anteriorly
occasionally with 2 - 4 serrations at the point, strongly
serrated posteriorly, ending in a short filament.
Pectoral fin spine with many small serrations on the
outer edge; inner edge with large serrations in the
middle, decreasing in size towards each end. Caudal
fin forked with the upper lobe usually being longer.
The head and body are marked
with wide dark sinuous horizontal brownish bands,
separated by light yellowish stripes. The ventral
region is lighter with small irregular blotches. Dorsal,
pectoral, ventral and anal fins are marked with a
transverse series of large black very contrasting
spots. Adipose fin dark except for the extreme top
which is lighter. Caudal fin with dark bands in both
lobes where the bands in the body continue through
the fin, light on the extreme edges and light in the
centre except for a few black spots.
Care & Compatibility
Good community catfish in a
larger setup but as with
all Syno's will need their own space, meaning their
own bit of bogwood, PVC pipe or rockwork to reduce
the territorial behaviour of this genus.
No reports on
the breeding of this species in captivity but has
been hormone bred by Slovakian aquarist Petre Posel
As with most members of this
genus it will eat most foods such as good quality
flakefood, tablets, whiteworm, pellets and frozen
food such as bloodworm.