hey, first of all id like to say this looks like a great site! google searches lead me here. My tank is 72"x18"x22" (i think thats right its 125 gallons)the cichlids in the tank are: an oscar, convict and a jack dempsey. i also have a bichir. i started with 3 pitcus catfish but i have 2 now and that's why im here... im looking for something that i can put in my tank that will 1) be able to handle itself with my larger cichlids and 2) not eat my smaller convict or bichir. i wouldnt mind replacing the pictus with 1 or 2 of something that gets a little bigger but i also have questions about them. a look at my tank. the net is gone now.
[Mod edit: Moved topic to appropriate section, and fixed youtube link --Mats]
Last edited by donk on Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:44 pm, edited 3 times in total.
the 3 fish did not hang out together and looked considerably different for being the same fish. 2 walmart pictus fish. 1 was champagne color with large wide spaced not well defined spots RIP. The other i bought at the same time has small tightly packed spots silver body the newest one is from pet smart(their site says they get 10"???. it's silver and has the most most vibrant and more uniform spots i got this fish much later then the other 2 and it is now the same size. if somehow petsmarts pictus catfish will grow faster and get bigger i wouldnt mind trying more pictus. i want a fish i can see, not something that hides all the time.
"Fishing provides that connection with the whole living world. It gives you the opportunity of being totally immersed, turning back into yourself in a good way. A form of meditation, some form of communion with levels of yourself that are deeper than the ordinary self."
i currently have pictus catfish but i want to rehome them and get something else due to size. but i want an active fish that i can enjoy with the lights on. i love how RTC look but obviously i need something smaller.
Welcome, Donk. I like your tank. Pleasant and natural-looking.
Pimelodus pictus catfish are, I think, nice for your purposes, unless, of course, you don't like their look. They are a shoaling species and a group looks spectacular - many catfish lovers go for that. In a group they are very active, open, inquisitive, personable and interactive. Most would agree that their look is interesting and pleasing. ID-ing them is usually very easy, just browse through the P. pictus datasheet and photos in the Cat-eLog. They need to be kept in a group of, I'd say, at least 6 to make them comfortable and make them come out and stay often in the open. If you have 1, or 2, or 3, they will likely hide most of the time. And in general, catfish are hiders. They are nocturnal fish that hide during the day. Now, of course, there is a plethora of exceptions to this general rule. One must also remember that the younger the catfish, the more it will hide - another rule of thumb, with its exceptions, of course.
If you need to know the IDs for sure, please post in the "what's my catfish?" forum with good pics and you will be promptly helped. But it sounds like you did not get 3 pictuses. There are two common variations - colombian and peruvian but they similar enough not to confuse them easily with other pimelodids. From Cat-eLog: Two colour forms appear for sale. The first, Peruvian, variety has large ''dalmatian'' style spots all over its body with smaller spots around the head. The other, Colombian, variety (which reportedly grows larger) has many more spots that are smaller, less clearly defined and almost pin-prick size on the fish's head. This differentiation should only be used when comparing fish of a similar size as both patterns change with age.
Since I do not possess the breadth of the knowledge of the experts on this site, I cannot start answering your principal, rather general question with concrete suggestions - there are, after all, 3000 different catfishes around. What is usually suggested here in such cases is to compile a list (I don't know... 5, 10, 20 candidates?) of what's available and affordable to you locally or via i-net and likable by you. Then, the experts and lower-level hobbyists like myself can voice their opinions.
I also usually suggest the following, IMO helpful, exercise: every datasheet in the Cat-eLog contains the line that looks like this, as an example: 300mm (11.8") SL. Find near, nearer or same sized spp. It is in the Species Information section, 2nd from the top. Click on near, or nearer, or same links and this will filter the entire 2400-catfish collection of datasheets in the Cat-eLog by size. Browse, read up on care and behavior and, again, compile a list of candidates and seek further help.
i browsed around petsmart its the only option near me unfortunately. the guy at the store said he had a featherfin for over 15 years and him talking about it and knowing about it sold me on my new tankmate.
there would be pictures if i could find it but here is a link to what i brought home.