Shovelnose Tiger Catfish

Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum

An Aquarium and Sport Fish of Amazonia

The Shovelnose Tiger Catfish (Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum) is also known as the Barred Sorubium and the Tiger Shovelnose Catfish. This catfish is popular with aquarium enthusiasts and fishermen alike. It is native to the Amazon Basin and can be found in such countries as Brazil, Peru, Venezuela, and Paraguay. In the Amazon it is considered a sport fish and is reported to be very tasty.

How Big do Shovelnose Catfish Get?

If you find this fish in a pet store it will likely be about three inches but be warned that it will grow much bigger. In only a few years the fish can easily reach two feet in length. In its native streams this fish can get over 60 pounds. Females are the larger of the sexes and reach sexual maturity at 56 cm while males are mature at 45 cm.

Can I have one of these as a pet?

This fish usually goes by the name of Tiger Shovelnose Catfish in the aquarium trade. For more information about feeding, and raising these shovelnose catfish we’ve provided some links below.
Aquaria Central

Quick Aquarium Care Facts

Where does it live: Bottom to Middle regions of the tank.
Tank Size: Small individuals under 6 inches should be in at least a 55 gallon tank. After 6 inches it should be in a 180 gallon or larger tank with open swimming areas.
Water Chemistry: pH 6-8, 4-30 dH, 75-82 degrees F
Social Behavior: Active Nocturnal Predator. It will eat smaller fish in the tank. It should live in groups or singly with other large, hardy fish.
Food: Live fish, earthworms, tablets, meat scraps.
Other: The Shovelnose Tiger Catfish is the most popular of the five Pseudoplatystoma species. It is a popular food fish in South America where it can be found easily in local fish markets.

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Written by Rob Nelson

Rob is an ecologist from the University of Hawaii. He is the co-creator and director of Untamed Science. His goal is to create videos and content that are entertaining, accurate, and educational. When he's not making science content, he races whitewater kayaks and works on Stone Age Man.

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