Cat-eLog Right Arrow Pimelodidae Right Arrow Leiarius

Jump to next section Cat-eLog Data Sheet
Scientific NameLeiarius pictus  (Müller & Troschel, 1849)
Common NamesSailfin Marbled Catfish
Painted Catfish, Saddle Catfish, Sailfin Pim, Segelantennenwels (Germany)
Type LocalityNo locality.
Synonym(s)Bagrus pictus, Sciades pictus
Pronunciationpick tuss
EtymologyThe genus name is derived from Leios, meaning smooth and Arius which is a Greek for "dealing with Mars, warlike, belliose". It's the name of another catfish genus, so the combination is "smooth Arius".  This specific epithet literally means painted (pictus=painted) and refers to the spots of the adult of the species.
Jump to next section Species Information
Size 600mm or 23.6" SL. Find near, nearer or same sized spp.
IdentificationThis catfish is sometimes confused with Leiarius longibarbis (formerly known as L. marmoratus). The overall body colour of L. pictus is dark brown with darker spots, with a lighter underside colouration. More noticeable in juvenile specimens this catfish has two pale bands, the first extends from the base of the dorsal fine spine toward the ventral fin, and then laterally along the body to the base of the caudal; the second thinner band lies parallel to the first originating from the base of the third to sixth soft dorsal fin rays.
SexingSee the images above of the male and female genital areas. Observation of cpative adult fishes points towards females tending to be more heavily built and robust than the males, which tend to be slender.
Jump to next section Habitat Information
DistributionWidespread throughout the Amazon and its tributaries, South America.
Amazon (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Guyana Waters, Coastal Rivers of Guyanas, Essequibo (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Orinoco (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Show it on a map (Click the map-icon to show/hide map of species distribution)
pH6.2 - 7.6
Temperature22.0-26.0°C or 71.6-78.8°F (Show species within this range)
Other ParametersUp to 18°dGH
Jump to next section Husbandry Information
FeedingCarnivore feeding on a very mixed and varied diet including earthworms, whole prawns, mussels, floating sticks/pellets and catfish pellets. In their natural environment they would feed upon other fish.
FurnitureLarge, spacious tank with open space for night time cruising. A large shady bogwood root or pipe that the catfish can retreat to during the day is also required. Ensure the heater is in the open and not in a place where the catfish may try and hide.
CompatibilityIdeally suited to life with other large fish. These catfish are predatory and will eat smaller fish if hungry.
Suggested TankmatesOther large catfish such as Pseudodoras, Oxydoras, Pterodoras and Megalodoras, Oscars and larger characins.
BreedingThere are no known aquarium spawnings of this catfish. This is most likely due to the size that these fish can attain and hence the subsequent size of aquarium in which to spawn them.
Jump to next section Further Information
ReferencesHorae Ichthyol.No. 3 - pp8
Registered Keepers(1) CFC, who also notes: "An extreemly fast growing species reaching full size in just 3 years", (2) arapaima, (3) roy.bryan, (4) watersprite, (5) LUISGOREY, (6) miller, (7) aledk85, (8) tezr, (9) vyperboy, (10) dean30bb, (11) sequoiacat (k: 3), who also notes: "Very peaceful and pleasant large catfish", (12) wonword, (13) Hudson Ensz, (14) Mcjlance (p: 2), (15) JessM315, (16) richb, who also notes: "Paid real money for this fish. Very pretty and very aggressive feeder. Really uses its whiskers to hunt for prey. Very active hunter. Now in a 360 gallon. Very hardy. I added a Wallago micropogon to the tank. The micropogon chomped a major chunk out of the dorsal fin. Both fish are now in the 4,000 gallon tub where I hope the space helps keep them apart. The L. pictus is about 20" as of 9/19/2014.", (17) BMLDN, (18) richnlou11.

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Breeding ReportsNone.
Article - CotM 2003 April
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Last Update2013 Jul 19 10:03 (species record created: 2001 Apr 22 00:00)