Glass Catfish Care Guide

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Glass Catfish
(Kryptopterus minor)

Common names:
Glass Catfish, Glassfish, Ghost Catfish, Asian Glass Catfish, Phantom Catfish.

Size: 8cm

pH: 5.5 – 7.5

Tempº: 21ºC - 26ºC

Tank region: Middle Top layer

Origin: Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia.

Gender: Unknown.

Notes: The Glass Catfish is a true Oddball in the Aquarium. Not only does it have a very unusual body shape, and it is one of the only top dwelling Catfishes but it’s body is entirely transparent! This allows it to ‘disappear’ in the wild, where it often lives in murky water.

This fish should be provided with clean, preferably slightly acidic water in the Aquarium however, where it makes a fantastic and peaceful addition to a larger community tank. Glass Catfish should always be kept in schools of 6 or more because of its gregarious nature, and it will do best in a well planted tank. However, it is important to provide free swimming space as well because the Glass Catfish can be quite active.

This fish can be kept in slow moving water or in a slight current, but is not suitable for a mountain stream type environment. The species is incredibly peaceful, and thus makes an excellent addition to a placid community. Reccomended tank mates include small Rasboras, Tetras, Corydoras and peaceful Barbs.

It should be noted that this fish is often confused for a very similar species – Kryptopterus bichirris. However, K.bichirris is in fact very rare in the Aquarium Trade, and will grow to almost twice the size of K.minor. It is likely that K.bichirris has been imported in the past, but is much rarer than K.minor.

It is possible that the first specimens of K.minor where actually imported before K.minor was scientifically recognized – it was only described in 1989 so it would make sense that imports before then where labeled K.bichirris.

Whilst most of the Glass Catfish’s body is transparent, only the skeleton and Swim Bladder are clearly visible. The rest of the fish’s organs are packed into the front half.
Image: The Glass Catfish sports an unusual body shape and is mostly transparent!
 

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