Cat-eLog Right Arrow Mochokidae Right Arrow Mochokinae Right Arrow Synodontis

Jump to next section Cat-eLog Data Sheet
Scientific Name Synodontis lucipinnis  Wright & Page, 2006
Common Names Dwarf Lake Syno
False Cuckoo Catfish, Petricola Dwarf Syno
Type Locality Musende Rocks, Zambia, Lake Tanganyika, 8°46'00''S, 31°07'00''E.
Pronunciation sin oh don tiss - loo see pin niss
Etymology Synodontis: From the Greek syn, meaning together, and odontos, meaning tooth; in reference to the closely-spaced lower jaw teeth. From the Latin luci, meaning bright or clear, and pinnis, meaning fin. In reference to the light patches found at the base of the black triangles on the rayed fins.
Articles
Article - CotM 2001 June
Jump to next section Species Information
Size 100mm or 3.9" SL. Find near, nearer or same sized spp.
Identification All species in the genus Synodontis have a hardened head cap that has attached a process (humeral process) which is situated behind the gill opening and pointed towards the posterior. The dorsal fin and pectoral fins have a hardened first ray which is serrated. Caudal fin is always forked. There is one pair of maxillary barbels, sometimes having membranes and occasionally branched. The two pairs of mandibular barbels are often branched and can have nodes attached. The cone-shaped teeth in the upper jaw are short. S-shaped and movable in the lower jaw. These fish produce audible sounds when disturbed rubbing the base of the pectoral spine against the pectoral girdle.

Similar to other described catfish from the lake. The cuckoo catfish, Synodontis multipunctatus, is the most common import and you, occasionally, may also encounter S. polli, S. dhonti and S.tanganyicae. All sport the distinctive white barbels and are spotted as juveniles to some degree or other and thus another form of quick identification prevails - S. petricola and S. lucipinnis are the only species with a solid white leading dorsal and pectoral fin ray and the spotted body pattern. This fish however appears to be growing to a smaller mature size than S. petricola and is less heavily spotted in comparison. S. petricola can be differentiated from S. lucipinnis by the former having smaller spots on the head than the body spots.
Sexing See male and female image above.
Jump to next section Habitat Information
Distribution Musende Rocks area, Zambia, Lake Tanganyika.
African Waters, Western Rift Valley Lakes, Tanganyika (click on these areas to find other species found there)

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pH 6.5 - 8.5
Temperature 22.0-24.0°C or 71.6-75.2°F (Show species within this range)
Other Parameters Surprisingly this species reproduces in less than neutral pH water condition much removed from those found in it's native habitat.
Jump to next section Husbandry Information
Feeding A very easy fish to feed. All prepared foods are accepted and the fish will eat heavily thus making conditioning a relatively simple task.
Furniture Bogwood is utilised although rock clusters appear more preferable. Seems to enjoy long, tall, flowing plants such as giant Vallisneria.
Compatibility A social species tolerant of their own kind and unimposing.
Suggested Tankmates Given that the fish doesn't require the water conditions normally associated with rift valley cichlids this renders virtually any aquarium fish of a suitable size and disposition a good tankmate. It's a community catfish for the masses!
Breeding Reports are mixed as to whether this species is or is not a cuckoo spawner, possibly due to incorrect determination of species that have spawned. Videoed spawnings indicate that it is not a parasitic ''cuckoo'' spawner but rather an egg scatterer. See Catfish of the month article.
Breeding Reports There are 3 breeding reports, read them all here.
Jump to next section Further Information
References Bulletin of the Florida Museum of Natural History v. 46 (no. 4), pp 126, Figs. 4A, 19
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There are 6 records of this fish being seen, view them all.
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Last Update 2014 Apr 17 15:35 (species record created: 2001 Apr 21 00:00)