Common Name: Tiger Shovelnose Catfish Scientific Name: Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum Other Names: Tiger catfish, Tiger fish, Shovelnose catfish, Cuiu cuiu
The Tiger Shovelnose Catfish is a popular fish in the aquarium trade due to its striking appearance and active behavior. They have a sleek, silver body with black stripes and spots, and a distinctive long snout, which it uses to hunt for prey. They are also known for their aggressive behavior and predatory instincts, which make them an exciting addition to an aquarium.
Habitat and Distribution:
Tiger Shovelnose Catfish is native to South America, where it can be found in the Amazon Basin, Orinoco Basin, and various river systems throughout Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela, and Peru. They are typically found in clear, fast-moving waters with rocky or sandy bottoms, as well as in flooded forests during the rainy season.
Size and Lifespan:
Tiger Shovelnose Catfish can grow up to 3 feet in length in the wild, but usually grow to around 2 feet in captivity. They have a lifespan of 10-15 years.
Diet and Behavior:
Tiger Shovelnose Catfish are carnivorous and primarily feed on other fish and crustaceans in the wild. In captivity, they can be fed a diet of frozen or live fish, shrimp, and other meaty foods. They are a highly active and predatory fish, and require plenty of swimming space to accommodate their active lifestyle. They may become territorial and aggressive towards other fish, so it is best to keep them with larger fish or as the sole specimen in an aquarium.
Breeding and Reproduction:
Tiger Shovelnose Catfish are difficult to breed in captivity, and most available specimens are wild-caught. There is limited information available on their breeding habits and reproductive cycle.
Aquarium Care and Tank Requirements:
Tiger Shovelnose Catfish require a large aquarium of at least 250 gallons to provide ample swimming space and to accommodate their potential size. They prefer a sandy or gravel substrate and ample hiding places such as caves, rocks, or driftwood. They are tolerant of a wide range of water conditions, but the ideal water temperature should be kept between 75-82°F, with a pH range of 6.5-7.5. The aquarium should be well-filtered and have high water flow to simulate the fast-moving waters of their natural habitat.
Ideal Tank Mates:
Tiger Shovelnose Catfish may become aggressive towards other fish, so it is best to keep them with larger, fast-swimming fish such as other large catfish or cichlids. They may also be kept with other Tiger Shovelnose Catfish of similar size.
Tiger Shovelnose Catfish are considered moderately difficult to keep due to their large size and predatory behavior, but can be a rewarding species for experienced aquarium keepers who are able to provide the necessary care and space requirements.
- Temperature: 75-82°F
- pH: 6.5-7.5
- General Hardness (GH): 6-20 dGH
- Carbonate Hardness (KH): 4-12 dKH
- Ammonia: 0 ppm
- Nitrite: 0 ppm
- Nitrate: <40 ppm
Tiger Shovelnose Catfish are also known for their commercial value as a food fish, and are heavily fished in their native habitat. They are also popular in aquaponics systems due to their fast growth and hardiness.
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