Cat-eLog Right Arrow Bagridae Right Arrow Mystus

  • Mystus leucophasis
Jump to next section Cat-eLog Data Sheet
Scientific NameMystus leucophasis  (Blyth, 1860)
Common NamesAsian Upside-down Catfish
Burmese Upside-down Catfish, Großer Asiatischer Rückenschwimmender Erls (Germany), Sittang Mystus
Type LocalitySitang and other Myanmar [Burma] rivers.
Synonym(s)Bagrus leucophasis, Macrones leucophasis
Pronunciationmiss tuss - loo koe fas iss
EtymologyThe generic name is probably derived from the Latin mystax, meaning moustache, in reference to the long barbels. It was first used by Scopoli in 1777 making it a very old genus that has included many catfishes from throughout the world at one time or another. 
Jump to next section Species Information
Size 300mm or 11.8" SL. Find near, nearer or same sized spp.
IdentificationFishes of the genus Mystus Scopoli are small to medium-sized bagrid catfishes occurring in South Asia. Roberts (1994) recognized Mystus to have an elongate cranial fontanel reaching up to the base of the occipital process, long maxillary barbel, very long adipose fin, 11–30 gill rakers on the first gill arch and 37–46 total vertebrae, about equally divided between abdominal and caudal regions. He included only eight species under the genus. Mo (1991) characterized the genus to have a thin needle-like first infraorbital, twisted and thickened metapterygoid loosely attached to the quadrate by means of ligament or a small extent of cartilage. Jayaram & Sanyal (2003) and Ferraris (2007) respectively listed 44 and 33 species of Mystus as valid.

A truly inverting catfish. All black with a handful of diamond flecks along the flanks of sub-adult or older fish.
SexingMales possess an elongate genital papilla which is located just fore of the anal fin and is quite predominant. Males also are thinner in the body and shorter in length at adult size (this is true of most Bagrids). Females are longer and heavier bodied.
Jump to next section Habitat Information
DistributionBurma; Sittang and other rivers
Myanmar Waters (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Myanmar Waters, Sittang (click on these areas to find other species found there)
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IUCN Red List StatusLeast Concern
pH6.0 - 8.0
Temperature23.0-27.0°C or 73.4-80.6°F (Show species within this range)
Other ParametersWater parameters are generally unimportant for the species. Ideally the water would be neutral and soft. A good current is recommendable.
Jump to next section Husbandry Information
FeedingNot a fussy feeder - all prepared foods are taken.
FurniturePVC pipe sections, one per fish, are required. These are preferred over, for example, flower pots and the like.
CompatibilityNot to be kept with small fish (i.e. anything less than three fourths the size of the catfish) will be quickly eaten.
Suggested TankmatesBoisterous cichlids (even Mbuna) and larger Loricariids are the best choice although some of the larger Cyprinids (Tinfoil barbs for example) are also possible. Avoid slow moving fish.
BreedingUnreported in the home aquarium, although (as the images above show) is mass breed by commercial breeders.
Jump to next section Further Information
ReferencesJ. Asiatic Soc. Bengalv. 29 (no. 2) - pp148
Registered Keepers(1) Dave Rinaldo, (2) Trident2004, (3) Silurus, (4) Sandtiger, (5) Igowoof, (6) michael56, (7) GoGoCactus, (8) RobDoran1, (9) The-Wolf, (10) haxjester, (11) ianimal, (12) jippo, (13) luv4jjt, (14) joe.juice13, (15) GixxerBabe, (16) tjcher, (17) Shovelnose (k: 2), (18) le_fish, (19) ryguy713 (p: 3), (20) Moomoo, (21) Tracey, (22) LLLL (k: 2), (23) andy.cole94 (k: 2), (24) tezr, (25) Altifrons, (26) HaKkEr, (27) b.price, (28) PangasiusSutchi37, (29) 0210Miyo, (30) Redtailrob (k: 2), (31) FNW, (32) Bimmerboy12 (k: 2), (33) headbanger_jib, (34) rhibear (k: 2), (35) JamieH, (36) snakelover (p: 2), (37) Buddiechrist, (38) Birger, (39) dylanshariatpanahy (p: 4), (40) tropical, (41) Marisco1729, (42) minipol, (43) Mcjlance, (44) flipperfeet, (45) Blaki1, (46) Hedorah, (47) Iiriva (k: 2), (48), (49) superluckyninja, who also notes: "My mystus is an adult male name October. He is nocturnal and hates any form of light. he eats bloodworms, minnows and goldfish. i dont know where he came from as he was passed on to me. he woud love company if anyone has a link to a female.", (50) dmcat, (51) slayer5590, (52) pokemonrange, (53) cowturtle, (54) NickFishnut, (55) ryoverde, (56) Blackbullhead, (57) caninesrock, (58) BullFishkeeping.

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Breeding ReportsNone.
Article - CotM 2000 March
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Last Update2013 Jul 19 13:13 (species record created: 2001 Apr 21 00:00)