Cat-eLog Right Arrow Auchenipteridae Right Arrow Auchenipterinae Right Arrow Trachycorystes

Jump to next section Cat-eLog Data Sheet
Scientific NameTrachycorystes trachycorystes  (Valenciennes, 1840)
Common Name(s)Iron Head Driftwood Catfish
Black Driftwood Catfish, Black Woodcat
Type LocalityBrazil
Synonym(s)Auchenipterus trachycorystes, Trachycorystes typus
EtymologyTrachycorystes: From the Greek trachys, meaning rough and korystes, meaning one armed with a helmet; in reference to the rugose cranial shield. 
Jump to next section Species Information
Size 450mm or 17.7" SL. Find near, nearer or same sized spp.
IdentificationThis Auchenipterid looks slender. It is the same colour all over (usually black) including the belly. Some report their fish having a brown colour, perhaps this is a different species.

Even more striking is the protruding lower jaw that gives this species identity easily away.
SexingMales have a genital papilla and do not grow as large as females.

Males are also reported to develop thickened barbels and/or larger dorsal spines.
General RemarksOf the handful of Trachycorystes that are known to science,Trachycorystes trachycorystes is the usual one that is exported albeit on an irregular basis.
Jump to next section Habitat Information
DistributionSouth America: Amazon basin.
Amazon (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Amazon, Lower Amazon, Nhamundá (click on these areas to find other species found there)
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pH6.4 - 7.0
Temperature23.0-29.0°C or 73.4-84.2°F (Show others within this range)
Other ParametersGenerally undemanding.
Jump to next section Husbandry Information
FeedingEverything that fits its (huge) mouth. Preferably live food and plenty of it. Larger frozen foods will also be eaten. No daphnia and such!

Happily eats prepared foods too.
FurnitureLarge pieces of driftwood as hiding places. Yet these fish also need swimming space for their nocturnal escapades.

Make sure tank covers are secured for this species may jump in the beginning.
CompatibilityAn aggressive fish that requires a species tank with plenty of refuges, as this species will also attack its own congeners when it feels like it (see Reference; TFH article by K & B Teats).

Don't put smaller fish in the same tank, not even fish that may be able to defend themselves well: in the end, they will be killed.
Suggested TankmatesOnly very large fish; certainly avoid slow moving species like (full grown) angelfish and fishes that would compete for refuge with this brute.
BreedingUnreported.
Jump to next section Further Information
ReferencesK & B Teats, TFH Dec. 1986 pages 30-37
Hist. Nat. Poiss.v. 15 - pp214 - Pl. 437
Registered Keepers(1) amiidae, (2) Koltsix (k: 2), (3) CFC, (4) mi-tatsu, (5) arapaimag, (6) yadayada, (7) kp90, (8) Junttis, (9) CatfishPownage63, (10) corybreed.

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Breeding ReportsNone.
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Last Update2014 Jan 21 11:23 (species record created: 2005 Nov 23 00:00)