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  • Ancistrus tamboensis
Jump to next section Cat-eLog Data Sheet
Scientific Name Ancistrus tamboensis  Fowler, 1945
Common Name Bristlenose Catfish
Type Locality Satipo, upper Tambo basin, Río Ucayali drainage, Peru, elevation 600 meters.
Pronunciation an SISS truss - tam BOW en siss
Etymology The name Ancistrus is derived from the Greek word agkistron, meaning hook, in reference to the interopercular odontodes that are hooked. Named for the Rio Tambo where this species was found.
Jump to next section Species Information
Size 110mm or 4.3" SL. Find near, nearer or same sized spp.
Identification Mature males and sometimes females have soft tentacles (bushy fleshy growths) on the snout - this is unique to the genus Ancistrus.

Often misquoted in hobby literature, this, the true A. tamboensis has a distinctive colouration and belly pattern.
Sexing Males have head tentacles, females do not.
Jump to next section Habitat Information
Distribution South America: Tambo River basin in upper Ucayali drainage.
Amazon, Upper Amazon, Marañón, Ucayali, Tambo (click on these areas to find other species found there)

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pH 6.5 - 7.5
Temperature 23.0-28.0°C or 73.4-82.4°F (Show species within this range)
Other Parameters Relatively undemanding.
Jump to next section Husbandry Information
Feeding It is thought that elements in bogwood, particularly lignin, may form an essential part of Bristlenose diet. Certainly they have the immensely long guts common to vegetarians, and although they fall avidly on the occasional meal of live food or prawns, the bulk of their diet must be composed of vegetable matter. If a high protein diet is fed constantly, then they will become prone to stomach disorders. Vegetable roughage keeps the gut in working order, and bogwood is a valuable addition to this.
Furniture In the aquarium they prefer a strong water current with lots of oxygen, and require plenty of hiding places. Bogwood is ideal for this, as it is not only attractive to look at and provides plenty of shelter. Although they are vegetarian, they do not feed on water plants either naturally or in the aquarium, and your treasured collection of cryptocorynes will not only remain uneaten, but the Bristlenose will carefully and gently graze each leaf, removing any covering of algae that may form.
Compatibility They are gentle and unassuming fish, and can be kept in community tanks with the most timid of inhabitants. Even tiny fry will be left unharmed once free-swimming.
Suggested Tankmates All community fish, small to medium sized cichlids.
Breeding See catfish of the month article.
Breeding Reports There is but a single breeding report, read it here.
Jump to next section Further Information
Reference Notulae Naturae (Philadelphia) No. 159, pp 9, Figs. 13-15.
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Last Update 2019 Sep 14 03:41 (species record created: 2001 Apr 26 00:00)