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Hemiancistrus sp. (L128)

Image contributors to this species:

Jim Makin (1) Danny Blundell (1) Chris Ralph (2) Daniel Blom (1) Yann Fulliquet (2) Johnny Jensen's Photographic Library (2) Graham Carr (1)

ScotCat Sources:

Factsheet Etymology = Genus

Other Sources:

Google Search  All Catfish Species Inventory

Relevant Information:

It is captioned as a Chaestostoma species in Aqualog All L-Numbers but it is clearly not, and as such was placed into the sub-family Ancistrinae, and then onto the Hemiancistrus genera. Quite similar to L200 and could  possibly be the northern population of this species. Similar to Hemiancistrus subviridis (L200) but has a greenish-blue body colouration. Juveniles have white spots on the edges of their fins. Aquarium Care: An ideal addition to an aquarium containing such fish as South American cichlids, tetras and angelfish, just as long as the other occupants are not too aggressive. Minimum tank size of 48” x 24” X 24”, although a larger aquarium would be preferred for one of these fascinating catfish. I would suggest good quality aquarium sand such as BD Aquarium Sand, or very smooth rounded gravel as the preferred substrate when keeping these catfish. The aquarium should provide some shelter in the form of rocks or bogwood along with a small covering of aquatic plants, although this is not essential. An ideal set-up would include some vertical rocks and some larger rounded boulders and a fairly strong current, as these catfish live naturally in the cracks and crevices in the rocks. As with all other species of fish, water quality and general husbandry is very important, and I would recommend that a minimum of 25% water is changed on a weekly basis. Sexual Differences: The males tend to be more slender and larger than the females. The males tend to develop bristles around the cheeks and head, with larger spines or odontodes being present along the leading edge of the pectoral fin ray. It is thought that in mature males the dorsal fin is more developed giving it an almost shark like appearance. In addition it is generally thought that the spots around the head region in mature males are larger. Diet: L128 readily accepts a mixed and varied diet which includes sinking foods such as catfish pellets, algae wafers, courgette, cucumber, frozen bloodworm and any other good quality foods which sink to the substrate. These catfish benefit from the addition of some meatier foods in their diet such as prawns and mussels.

Common Name:

L128, Blue phantom pleco






Venezuela: Amazonas, Puerto Ayacucho (Rio Orinoco)


20.0cm. (8ins)


26-29°c (79-85°f.)




ScotCat Factsheet no. 144. May 2008.
Seidel, I. 2008. Back to Nature guide to L-catfishes, Ettlingen, Germany 208 p



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