Catfish of the Month Right July 2020

Lasiancistrus sp. (L516)
L516, Colombian Halffin Pleco, Colombiansk Halvfinnesugemalle (Denmark) - Lasiancistrus sp. (L516)    

Article © Erlend D Bertelsen, uploaded July 11, 2020.

We are, again, grateful to have Erlend Bertelsen write about the latest new L-number pleco which, as Erlend explains, he found on a recent trip to South America.

Most people really don't care about Lasiancistrus spp. in general. On one side you have the easy to keep and breed genera; Ancistrus, Peckoltia, Panaqolus and Hypancistrus; on the other side you have tough and nice looking Pseudacanthicus, Leporacanthicus, Panaque and Scobinancistrus. In-between this you have some forgotten genera, which don't have that big a fan base.

Lasiancistrus contains six described species. L. caucanus, L. guacharote, L. heteracanthus, L. saetiger, L. schomburgkii and L. tentaculatus. In addition to the described species, we also have around 10 known L-numbers. It is likely that some of these would be placed in the already described species, if the scientific community had a look at them. I would say that many of the known L-numbers would fall in under L. schomburgkii, L. heteracanthus and L. tentaculatus.

In DATZ 07/20 I introduced L-516. This is a Lasiancistrus from Río San Pedro in Colombia. This river feed the bigger Río Caqueta. The fish was collected on my collecting trip to Colombia in 2019. To be honest, I didn't spend much time looking at this new Lasiancistrus sp. when I collected them. Well, it was only a Lasiancistrus! It was not before around 10 months after I arrived back home I understood I was facing something new. Lasiancistrus sp. L-516 do resemble Lasiancistrus caucanus the most regarding the general look, but the fact that this fish is collected on the different side of the Andes mountains, makes the author consider that this is a new fish. The wavy black striped pattern on the brown background doesn't fit Lasiancistrus caucanus either. The only way to say for sure it isn't Lasiancistrus caucanus is by looking for abdominal plates. Sadly photos were not taken of ventral abdominal plates. However, there is more then enough evidence to say this is a new L-number with its special pattern not seen in any other Lasiancistrus.

They where collected in the distribution area of Lasiancistrus schomburgkii, but pattern and colour should rule out that species. The fact that we also collected the real Lasiancistrus schomburgkii in the same river should also point out that this is a new Lasiancistrus, and that these two species live together in Río San Pedro and maybe in Río Caqueta itself. I don't think we will see this fish in the trade, due to the low popularity of Lasiancistrus in general, and that we don't see much fishing for the ornamental trade in the Caqueta region.

Copyright information for the images used in this article can be found on the species' full Cat-eLog page.

Down Cat-eLog Data Sheet
Scientific Name Lasiancistrus sp. (L516)   
Common Names L516, Colombian Halffin Pleco
Colombiansk Halvfinnesugemalle (Denmark)
Pronunciation LASS ee an SISS truss
Etymology Greek, lasios, -a, -on = hairy + Greek, agkistron = hook 
Down Species Information
Identification Adult Lasiancistrus can be separated from all other loricariids by the presence of whisker-like odontodes on the cheeks. In addition, they have evertible cheek odontodes; three rows of plates on the caudal peduncle; and a modified, bar-shaped opercle. The caudal fin is slightly emarginate to forked, with the lower lobe longer than upper. Nuptial males have tentacules on the pectoral-fin spines longer than their associated odontodes; and transluscent tentacules on the snout that have odontodes associated with them. Nuptial males lack hypertrophied odontodes on top of the head and lack long, bristle-like odontodes on the leading edge of the pectoral-fin spine.
Down Habitat Information
Amazon, Middle Amazon (Solimoes), Japurá, Caquetá (click on these areas to find other species found there)

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IUCN Red List Category Not Evaluated
Down Husbandry Information
Breeding Reports There is no breeding report.
Down Further Information
Registered Keepers There is but a single registered keeper, view all "my cats" data.
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There is but a single wish to keep this species, see who wants what.
Spotters Spotted this species somewhere? Click the binoculars!
There are 2 records of this fish being seen, view them all.
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Last Update 2022 Jan 22 15:32 (species record created: 2020 Jul 11 03:39)

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