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Scleromystax sp. (C113) 

his member of the Callichthyidae genus is as yet not been named to species. There are at the present (Feb 2012) six named
Scleromystax species, S. barbatus, S. kronei, S. lacerdai, S. macropterus, S. prionotos and S. salmacis. There is also two C-numbers, this species C113, C112 and also two CW number CW038 and CW042 awaiting description.

Scleromystax sp. (C113)  = male head view


Scleromystax species are found in the rainforest streams, and not in the open river areas. This genus is related more to the Aspidoras than the Corydoras genera. As this genera are found on the south east coast of Brazil they will do better at lower temperatures. C113 comes from the coastal area of eastern Brazil, south of Salvador da Bahia.

The Scleromystax genera was resurrected by taxonomists (Britto; Marcelo R. Phylogeny of the subfamily Corydoradinae Hoedeman, 1952 (Siluriformes: Callichthyidae), with a definition of its genera) during an ongoing study of Corydoras, Aspidoras and Brochis in 2004. The main criteria for resurrecting the genera was the cheek bristles on the males.


In addition, Scleromystax differs from Aspidoras in its reduced ossified portion of pectoral spine, which is longer than half the length of the first branched pectoral-fin ray, and in its somewhat more elongate snout. Individuals of this genus also posses a conspicuous colouration pattern characterized by small striated blotches all over dorsum and sides of head (less conspicuous in Scleromystax prionotos).



Scleromystax sp. (C113) - eggs.
Scleromystax sp. (C113) - 4weeks old.

sp. (C113) - eggs.

sp. (C113)
- 4weeks old.



The best conditions for keeping C113 is to keep the males apart if you are housing them in a small tank as they will quarrel with each other and can cause injuries. I have males that have only one long pectoral fin and a short damaged one on the other side due to this aggression. You can of course keep them together if you have a large tank and plenty of hiding places for each male.


Lateral ethmoid long; contact between supraoccipital and nuchal plate; palatine slender; odontodes on preopercular-opercular region of males.


Males have a cream to white body with reticulated markings to the head. There is a darker black to dark brown band running the full length of the body on the lateral line narrowing to the caudal peduncle. This line breaks into two at the insertion of the dorsal and extends to the rear of the dorsal fin. Below this the body is cream coloured. Females are similarly patterned but with some blotching to the body. There is a small dark blotch to the base of the dorsal fin in both sexes.

As with most members of the Callichthyidae they are peaceful and good additions to the larger "cool water" aquarium set up with maybe other cool water fish such as White Cloud Mountain Minnows and other fish that are comfortable with a temperature around the 70°f (21.5°c) mark.

As per the Corydoradinae sub family with the males chasing the females and clinching in the time honoured T-position. They will lay their eggs medium to high up on the glass and are easily rolled off with your fingers after three days and placed in a small container to hatch with added Methyelene Blue to stop the eggs fungussing. When they use up their yolk sac they can be fed very small first foods such as Liquifry no.1 and then on to fry flake, micro worm and tablet food. I added an airline to this container to move the water around gently. Change about 50% of the water every day replacing with water from the main breeding tank and then toping up this tank when it needs replenished, that way the main tank keeps getting a water change every few days and the container gets clean top ups from this tank. Remarks: I have found it easier to keep the males apart as they will be more interested in quarreling amongst themselves than producing. For breeding purposes keep one male to two females or one pair to a tank.

Sexual differences

The pectoral fins are longer in the males as in the the females and they also possess longer dorsal fins.. They also have bristles on the snout which are very hard to distiguish. The males are also better marked and coloured.



As with other members of the Corydoradinae they relish tablet and good quality flake food with frozen bloodworm a firm favourite. They are also keen on chopped earthworms and other worm foods such as white worm used sparingly, and grindal worm.


Scleromystax : From the Greek "sclero" meaning hard and the Latin "mystax" meaning moustache.


Britto; Marcelo R., Phylogeny of the subfamily Corydoradinae Hoedeman, 1952 (Siluriformes: Callichthyidae), with a definition of its genera. Proceedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia 153: 119–154.


Glossary of Terms

Supraoccipital: Unpaired bone at the back at the back of the skull, usually with a crest.

Nuchal plate: Area between the skull and dorsal fin.
Palatine: Bone which lies laterally in the roof of the mouth.
Odontodes: Hair - like stuctures on the body

Preoperculum : The anterior bone of the opercular series, forming the border of the cheek.

Opercular : The bony covering of the gills of fishes.

Photo Credits

Images: Allan James @ ScotCat

Factsheet 189

Common Name:
C113, Baianinho III
South America; Brazil, 200 km south of Salvador da Bahia.
Male: 6.0cm (2½ins) Female: 6.5cm (2¾ins)
20-24°C (67-75°F)
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                                                                                                                                               Factsheet 189 = updated December, 2009 © ScotCat 1997-2018  Go to Top