e are back to the South American sub-continent
for this months factsheet (April 2004) with a first from us on
a member of the Pseudopimelodidae family. The sub-family
of Pimelodidae, Pseudopimelodinae, is now considered a full family
status of Pseudopimelodidae and is of course closely related to
the Pimelodidae family and mostly contains the smaller pims, such
as the South American Bumblebee and dwarf marbled catfishes.
Its common name of the Bumblebee Catfish can be misleading as
there is another catfish, from Asia, Pseudomystus
siamensis, that also carries this
name and this is probably the fish that we know mostly as "The
Bumblebee Catfish". P. siamensis has a different
body pattern, shape, and possess's an extra pair of barbels.
That is why we mostly refer to them as the South American and
Asian Bumblebee Cats. There are at the present moment (2010)
17 species in the Microglanis genera.
There can be confusion between another three species of the
same genera, Microglanis
poecilus, M. secundus and M. parahybae.
There are diferences in colour patterns, especially on the caudal
peduncle and caudal fin areas.
M. poecilus |
M. parahybae |
The line drawings may help you to identify your Microglanis
but being able to see your species in your tank to do this is
another matter entirely as they are very secretive as you can
go months without spotting them, unless you can view them with
the lights out at night when they come out for their forays.
To sum up, a very nice looking pim, while being very nocturnal,
but being able to see them on the odd occasion makes up for
the weeks that you thought you had lost it, and so a nice addition
to a medium sized community tank.
Dorsal fin rounded, Caudal fin truncate.
Adipose fin well developed. Maxillary barbels reaching past the
origins of the pectoral spines. lateral line well developed (tubular
with pores) Head flattened.
Dark brown markings on a light brown background.
The area of dark brown colour on the caudal peduncle is more or
less square. Dorsal fin mainly dark brown with a pale tip, Slightly
mottled with brown and with a large triangular pale patch based
on the last two rays. The caudal fin has a broad dark brown cross
is one of twenty six, small to medium sized pims, found in this
family, and as such is a good addition to the medium sized community
tank, and will not harm the occupants unless they are small enough
to fit into its mouth such as newly born fry and young fish. If
you keep livebearers such as Guppies and Platies in with them
you will very rarely be overrun with fry as the Bumblebee Catfish
will promptly finish them off on its night time prowls. Hiding
places such as rockwork, plants and or wood will benefit this
species and help, along with regular water changes, to keep this
"Bumblebee Catfish" happy in its surroundings.
Two reports from English aquarists. First
Des Penny published in the magazine of the Catfish Association
of Great Britain stating that the water parameters ranged from
4.8-6pH and temperature values between 22°c and 25.5°c.
He fed a regime of shredded cod, coley, prawns, mussels, cockles
and oxheart, plus feedings of live Daphnia, bloodworm and river
shrimp. He found fry by accident one day when he was feeding his
fish, a total count of 40 at about 12mm in size which were perfect
replicas of the parents. There is no report of how they spawned
but Des puts it down to either three things that went on in the
tank previously, a drop in temperature then it quickly warming
up, his Characins spawning at the same time or it could have been
the very varied diet that he was undertaking. Next article from
Paul Barrow appeared in the Tropical Fish Hobbyist in 1997 and
he witnessed the spawning with them dashing around the tank with
the male wrapping itself around the females head (It must be noted
here that the females get quite rotund and helps to differentiate
males from females). Paul actually put them back into the new
tank after fitting a new under gravel system prier to them spawning,
so with 50% new water this would go a long way to facilitating
their actions. His water parameters were: Temp: 72°f rising
to 75°f over a 12 week period with the p.H. never dropping
below 6.5. He took the eggs out of the tank to a smaller tank
but they all fungused and unfortunately he did not get any offspring.
|Males are slimmer than
Can be fed a varied diet of tablet food,
pellets, worm foods and frozen food such as bloodworm and as seen
above in the breeding report.
Micro = small; glanis = catfish.
Top picture: Jim Makin.
barbels : Pertaining
to the upper jaw. (maxillary barbels)
of Great Britain,
Magazine 69-1/91, p63-64.
Sands, David; Catfishes of the World Vol.3
Auchenipteridae & Pimelodidae.
Barrow, Paul; Tropical Fish Hobbyist, Sep.1997,
Line Drawings: Catfish Association of Great Britain,