5 photos - 3 species


There are 11 to 12 genera and over 100 species.

Most catfish species live in fresh water.

Only two families contain marine species.

Juveniles live in dense schools on sand and sea grass,

whereas adults are nocturnal loners.

They grow to between 8 cm and three metres in length, depending on the species.

Pangasianodon hypophthalmus

Iridescent shark or Iridescent shark catfish

Shark catfish have a scaleless, elongated, laterally flattened body.

Most species are medium-sized to large fish that reach body lengths of around half a metre

to just over a metre.

Photo 1 Johnny: Luxembourg ( Aquarium )

Plotosus lineatus

Striped eel catfish


Maximum length: 32 cm

Depth: 1 - 30 metres

These catfish should not be handled carelessly,

as their pectoral and dorsal fin spines

are very venomous and have strong barbs on both sides,

making them difficult to remove from wounds.

Stings are extremely painful and can even be fatal.

Photos 1 - 3 Johnny: Lembeh Strait North Sulawesi

Pterygoplichthys gibbiceps

Leopard pleco

Maximum length: 50 cm

Its body is covered with 28 to 30 bony scutes arranged in rows.

The colour is brown with numerous black spots,

smaller on the head and arranged in rows on the fins.

Its very large dorsal fin has a leading spiny ray and 12 to 13 soft rays.

On the anal fin it has four soft rays after the single spiny ray.

Distribution: middle and lower Amazon basin.


Photo 1 Johnny: Oberhausen Germany ( Aquarium )