The Vandellia genera
are hematophagous (consume blood) parasites, and like
all other members of the subfamily Vandelliinae. V.
sanguinea uses visual and chemo-sensory orientation
to find potential hosts. It is active both during
the daytime and night time while foraging.There are 3 described species in this genera,
cirrhosa, (Amazon River basin.)
beccarii (from the Orinoco River basin
and rivers of Guyana)and V. sanguinea
(from the Amazon, Orinoco and Essequibo River
basins). V. cirrosa seems to be the more
common species of the Candiru. This is the species
that has gained a fearsome reputation for entering
the gill chambers of larger fishes and feeding on
the blood from the gills. Probably the most disturbing
habit is entering the urogenital openings of mammals,
including human bathers in the water. It will lock
its opercular and interopercular spines and has to
be surgically removed from its intended victim.
Aquarium Care: Not easy to keep and would
need to be housed on their own as larger fish would
be preyed upon for their blood in the gill chambers.
Sand is the best substrate for digging themselves
into and floating plants to cut the light down for
this light sensitive species. Diet:
Very difficult as all reports seem to intimate that
they need larger fish to feed on.
South America: Amazon, Orinoco and Essequibo River basins.
Type locality: San Antonio de Rio
Froese, R. and D. Pauly.
FishBase. World Wide Web electronic publication. www.fishbase.org,
( 11/2014 ). Ferraris, C.J. Jr., 2007. Checklist
of catfishes, recent and fossil (Osteichthyes: Siluriformes),
and catalogue of siluriform primary types. Zootaxa
1418:1-628. de Pínna, M.C.C. and W. Wosiacki,
2003. Trichomycteridae (pencil or parasitic catfishes).
p. 270-290. In R.E. Reis, S.O. Kullander and C.J.
Ferraris, Jr. (eds.) Checklist of the Freshwater Fishes
of South and Central America. Porto Alegre: EDIPUCRS,