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Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum (Linnaeus, 1766)

Image contributors to this species:

Allan James (1) Frants Lehmann ( 1 Stamp) Chris Ralph (2) Jean -Francois Helias (5) Devya Hemraj (1)

ScotCat Sources:

Factsheet Art Gallery Etymology = Genus Etymology = Species

Other Sources:

Fishbase  Google Search   All Catfish Species Inventory


Relevant Information:

Similar to Pseudoplatystoma tigrinum but this species has a striped pattern and P. fasciatum has  the stripes more in the shape of a Y. The  first  specimen pictured here, was taken in The Port Doree Public Aquarium in Paris, France. The 5,6,7,8 & 9th images were taken in Thailand, Asia, where this Pim has now been introduced to large ponds and fishing lakes for sport fishing. Aquarium Care: Its tank should have a shaded area at the back such as a large branch and plants to hide under as it is nocturnal, and also the lighting should not be too bright. Should not be kept with any fish that is smaller than itself and it also should be housed in a very large tank. The best companions would probably be large Pacu's or similar sized fish that would not be swallowed. In my opinion this wonderful looking Pim should only be kept in Public Aquariums as it can damage its large nose if kept in too confined an area, it can get jumpy too if feels its barbels on the tank sides as it turns around. It can also go of its food as well, if it is anyway disturbed. Diet: In their natural habitat they eat other fish such as characins and other catfish, they also eat freshwater crabs. In the aquarium a diet of earthworms, freshwater fish such as trout and also shrimp and prawns. You should only feed when it starts looking actively for it, as they will rest for a few days after feeding to digest their food. Remarks: In some quarters the synonym, P. punctifer, is classed as a species in its own right. This species and P. tigrinum are supposedly sympatric in the Amazon Basin. There has been 5 new species described by Buitrago-Suárez, U.A. and B.M. Burr in 2007, to go alongside P. tigrinum, P. fasciatum and P. corruscans. These species are P. punctifer (Castelnau), P. reticulatum Eigenmann & Eigenmann, P. orinocoensen, P. metaense, and P. magdaleniatum. So far P. punctifer is the only species that has not been accepted in some publications in print and on the internet..

Common Name:

Tiger shovelnose catfish


Platystoma fasciatum, Platystoma punctifer, Platystoma truncatum, Pseudoplatystoma punctifer, Silurus fasciatus 




South America: Amazon, Corantijn, Essequibo, Orinoco, and Paraná River basins (Lundberg & Littmann, 2003);
Magdalena River basin. Type Locality: Brasilia, Surinami.


90cm. ( 3ft )


24-28°C (75-83°F)




Ferraris, C.J. Jr., 2007. Checklist of catfishes, recent and fossil (Osteichthyes: Siluriformes), and catalogue of siluriform primary types. Zootaxa 1418:1-628.
ScotCat Factsheet No. 36. June 1999
Buitrago-Suárez, U.A. and B.M. Burr, 2007. Taxonomy of the catfish genus Pseudoplatystoma Bleeker (Siluriformes: Pimelodidae) with recognition of eight species. Zootaxa 1512:1-38.



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