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Pictus catfish

Picture of Pimelodus pictus
Photo © Sean Evans

Common name:Pictus catfish, Angel pim, Spotted pim
Scientific name:Pimelodus pictus
Synonyms:Pimellodella pictus, Pimelodella angelicus (not valid)
Size:5" (12.5cm)
Origin:South America: Brazil, Colombia, Peru and Venezuela.
Tank setup:Plenty of open swimming space and caves or plants for refuges. Soft sand or smooth gravel substrate.
Compatibility:Predatory and will eat small fish such as Neon tetras, not aggressive towards larger fish.
Temperature:22-25oC (72-77oF)
Water chemistry:Fairly soft, slightly acidic (pH 6-6.9) ideally.
Feeding:Carnivore/Insectivore, but will take various flake, pellet and frozen/live foods.
Sexing:Unknown, but females may be larger and thicker in shape.
Breeding:Unknown - no accounts of aquarium breeding.
Comments: One of the most popular aquarium catfish, it has a striking spotted pattern and long flowing barbels. They are not generally aggressive, but avoid keeping with fish small enough to fit in in their mouths (such as tetras) - as these may disappear overnight! Often feed in a somewhat frenzied manner, which may alarm calmer fish. They are more active by day when kept as a small group. Do not use nets to catch these fish, as they have sharp spines which will become entangled - coax them into a solid plastic container or similar.



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