genus Tatia contains around about 14 species
(2010) distributed throughout South America east of
the Andes from Venezuela and Colombia to Southern
Brazil. They don't grow big and the largest size recorded
is 12cm. ( 5ins).
to be kept by catfish fanatics (for the want of
a better word!) as you will not see them from
one week to another as they are nocturnal (active
at night) and you have to feed at lights out or
as I do, put food into the pipe or crevice that
you will find them jammed into.
is quite a pretty catfish as most of this genus
are. The eyes are large with a skin over them
and a few non catfish aquarists tend to think
that they have cloudy eye's and it is a disease,
but this is normal for the Auchenipteridae
The barbels are moderate
in length reaching to the end of the dorsal fin
and they tend to bend them upwards when looking
for food. They can also tuck their barbels alongside
their cheeks making them nearly invisible. I tend
to think that there is a groove in this area where
they can lay their barbels in. They possess two
pairs of barbels, one pair of mandibular and one
pair of maxillary.
They have quite a chunky
body with a broad based caudal peduncle (between
the dorsal and caudal) which is unusual in itself
as in most fish it slopes down to the caudal fin.
Tatia possess a very small adipose fin
and a moderately sized ventral and anal.
The anal fin is the key
to the sexual dimorphism of this genus, if you
think of the male and female of most livebearer
fish (Goodeidae family) and you will not
be too far away with this assumption. As you can
see above the female has a normal anal fin but
the males are modified into a copulatory organ
with the first and second ray thickened and longer,
it is thought that the male uses this to clasp
the female during the spawning embrace.
Swedish aquarist Daniel Blom has recently bred
this species and you can see his progress below
in these clickable images.
Eggs-laid under a piece
Eggs-on the third day
10mm fry a couple of days
Amazon River basin and rivers of the Guianas.
A 8-10; P 1/4; V 6. Body stocky, varying little in
depth from front to back, the hinder part compressed.
Dorsal fin inserted far forwards, short, with a stout
spine. Adipose fin small. Caudal fin forked. Anal
fin-base short. 1 pair of maxillary barbels, reaching
to the pectoral fins when laid back; two pairs of
short, very fine, mandibular barbels.
Body dark brown to black with
pale blotches. Middle of the underside delicate pale
brown to white. The dorsal, adipose and caudal fins
display the same colouration and markings as the body.
The remaining fins are translucent, pale or light
Care & Compatibility
Give them small pipes, and
they do seem to like to hide in the crevices of bogwood
as well. They appear to be happier if they can jam
themselves in with the use of their pectoral fins.
Community tanks are fine for this species although
you may find that they will predate on fry from other
species, but apart from that they come well recommended
but don't expect to see them too often.
with the eggs deposited 24-48 hours later. (See images
above) Also a report on Tatia creutzbergi,
with them placing their adhesive eggs on the underside
of wood with no broodcare after the event. A few members
of the Auchenipteridae family have been spawned
in the hobby with a successful breeding and raising
of the young of Trachelyichthys decaradiatus
by Dick Thompson, a former member of The Northern
Area Catfish Group (now the Catfish
The anal fin is the key to
the sexual dimorphism of this genus, if you think of
the male and female of most livebearer fish (Goodeidae
family) and you will not be too far away with this assumption.
The female has a normal anal fin but the males are modified
into a copulatory organ with the first and second ray
thickened and longer, it is thought that the male uses
this to clasp the female during the spawning embrace.
In its native habitat they
feed on small invertebrates and crustaceans and in
the aquarium they will eat anything given such as
frozen bloodworm inserted in to their hideaway, catfish
tablets, white worm (sparingly) and prawns and shrimp.
They do like their food and you can see them shooting
out of their hideouts and swimming in a frenzied manner
to try and take all for themselves, especially when
you feed them their favourite food, frozen bloodworm.
In honour of Mr. C. Tate Regan.
In between, (between two species).
W.E. 1989 An atlas of freshwater and marine
catfishes. A preliminary survey of the Siluriformes.
T.F.H. Publications, Inc., Neptune City, New Jersey
(USA). 784 p. Baensch, H.A. and R. Riehl 1991 Aquarien
atlas. Bd. 3. Melle: Mergus, Verlag für Natur-
und Heimtierkunde, Germany. 1104 p. Catfish Association Great Britain.
Volume1. Sterba, Gunther: Freshwater Fishes
of the World 1.