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Panaqolus albivermis Lujan, Steele & Velasquez, 2013 (L204)

lash by name and flash by looks!, that is the subject of this months (Nov. 2010) factsheet. A very nice looking member of the Loricariidae family and as not yet has not been named to species so it has had the L-number of L204 since February 1996 from the DATZ magazine pages 74-75.


Update: As of July 2013 this species has now been named by Lujan, Steele & Velasquez as Panaqolus albivermis. The specific name of albivermus meaning; alba = white and vermis = worm, relating to the white to yellow lines on the body.

Panaqolus albivermis = adult


Panaqolus albivermis - Adult


There is an actual school of thought, mainly in Germany, that the smaller Panaques are actually Panaqolus and the larger species are Panaque. The differences are that Panaque have an oval shaped mouth and the jaws have very large spatulate teeth with a single cusp, arranged in a v form and Panaqolus have a small number of spatulate teeth and are also smaller. This seems to make sense as it would split the smaller Panaqolus and the larger Panaques but as yet this has not gained exceptance worldwide.


The juveniles of this species have a very bold pattern of light stripes which form into spots and stripes with age as can be seen on the above image and the juvenile markings shown in the image below.

Panaqolus albivermis - Juvenile colours.


Panaqolus albivermis - Juvenile colours.


Tank set-up should contain wood of some description as the Panaques need this in their diet. Plants will not work too well as they will be eaten so plenty of wood scattered around the tank with a few caves for spawning activities on a sand or small rounded gravel bed will do just fine. Provide strong aeration due to the higher temperatures involved.




Oval mouth region with a small number of spatulate teeth with a single cusp, arranged in a V.

Juveniles will sport white stripes on a black body but this will often break up into spots/thinner stripes when maturing into adulthood. The base colour is dark brown with yellow thin vertical lines.


Peaceful Loracariids that will co-exist with fishes that like temperatures on the higher side. Will co-exist fine with shoaling Tetra's or small Cichlids. Will get slightly territorial with age.


Plenty of water changes seem to be the catalyst for the breeding of this species. Male will make a home in the cave and the female will visit where up to 70 eggs will be laid. The female will be ejected by the male and he will care for the eggs. After the fry have used up their yolk sac they can be fed with pleco tablets and will also graze, like their parents on soft wood provided by the aquarist.

Sexual differences
Males posses a broad head and odontodes on the posterior part of the body, behind the gill covers and on the pectoral spines. The latter two are a lot shorter in the females.

All Panaque (Panaqolus) are wood eaters so would need this in an aquarium set-up. Feed also vegetable foods such as cucumber and courgette (zucchini) and sinking tablets.


Seidel, I. 2008. Back to Nature guide to L-catfishes, Ettlingen, Germany 208 p

Lujan, NK, S Steele & M Velasquez, 2013. A new distinctively banded species of Panaqolus (Siluriformes: Loricariidae) from the western Amazon Basin in Peru. Zootaxa 3961: 192–198.


Panaqolus: The name "olus" meaning small, as in small Panaque.

albivermis : alba = white and vermis = worm, relating to the white to yellow lines on the body.

Photo Credits

Top picture:       © Danny Blundell

Bottom Picture: © Daniel Konn-Vetterlein

Factsheet 173

Common Name:
Flash Pleco, L204


Peru Peru: middle to upper Rio Ucayali drainage  
14cm. (5½ins)
25-29°c (77-85°f.) 
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                                                                                                      Factsheet 173 = updated December 14, 2018 , © ScotCat 1997-2018  Go to Top