21-05-2018, 20:47
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Acanthodoras cataphractus

Acanthodoras cataphractus is a very popular fish among catfish enthusiasts. Unfortunately, these fish can rarely be found in the trade. Under natural conditions, these fish live in the Amazon River basin in South America. Acanthodoras can be found in quiet pools among the mangroves. During the daytime the catfish hide in shelters, but show most activity at night.

The body shape of Acanthodoras cataphractus is flattened and elongated. The head is large with small eyes, near the mouth are 3 pairs of antennae. There are hard bony plates on each side, covering slightly more than half of the body. The tail plumage is rounded. The fish also has a small fat fin. The body coloration, as the name of the fish implies, is chocolate color. Horizontal orange stripes run along the body: one of the stripes runs from the eye to the root of the tail plumage, and the other along the backbone. The underside of the head as well as the belly are light brown. There are light spots on the body near the anal fin. The fins are brownish with dark brown dots. Males slimmer than females, slightly smaller in size and have a contrasting coloration, their abdomen is dark and antennae light brown. Females have a much lighter abdomen and yellowish antennae. In natural conditions, the size of fish reaches 20 cm, while in aquariums they usually do not exceed 15 cm.

Acanthodoras cataphractus

Keep Acanthodoras cataphractus preferably in a group of 4-6 specimens. These catfish can easily be kept in a common aquarium with other medium and large in size peace-loving fish. The main thing to remember that these catfish have a fairly large mouth and they are able to eat any fish that can fit into it in size. Most of the time the fish spend at the bottom.

To content Acanthodoras cataphractus aquarium of 150 liters in volume, densely planted with a variety of plants. At the bottom should be placed snags, large rocks and grottos, among which could hide these fish. As the soil can be used coarse river sand or its mixture with fine gravel. The thickness of the layer of soil shall be at least 5 cm.

The parameters of water temperature 22-26° C, hardness dH 2-20°, pH 6,0-7,5. Requires quality filtration and aeration of water, as well as its weekly replacement of 1/3 of fresh water.

Low, diffused light. The duration of daylight hours 8-10 hours a day.

Like all other species of the Armadillos family, Acaphthoras cataphractus are omnivorous fish, which gladly eat almost any food they find, digging in the ground. They eat earthworms, snails, frozen and live bloodworms, Coretta, and Tubifex. Also need plant food fish, which content in the total menu should be about 30%.


Acanthodoras cataphractus sometimes spawn in aquariums, at least we know of documented events of this kind. Producers dug holes in the substrate in which the female throws the eggs. The clutch is guarded by both parents. The larvae hatch after 4-5 days, but the young prove unviable and die.

Life expectancy Acanthodoras cataphractus in aquarium conditions is about 10 years.

Acanthodoras cataphractus

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