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a-z of creatures - Creature View

Catfish, Giraffe
Auchenoglanis occidentalis

DID YOU KNOW: The giraffe catfish gets its name from the spotty pattern on its skin. This fish is a bottom feeder and uses its specialised mouth to hoover up anything food from the riverbed. Like all catfish, it uses its fleshy barbels (whiskers) to detect its food through touch and taste. 

Scientific Name: Auchenoglanis occidentalis 

Continent: Africa

Tropical freshwater. Inhabits
 swamps, ponds and ditches

Size: Up to 70cm

Diet: Omnivorous

Food: Plankton, seeds, molluscs and detritus

Conservation status: Least Concern

Giraffe catfish have become a problem in the UK due to their popularity in the home aquarium fish trade. Due to the shear shape and size that these fish can grow to, fish owners are left with a 'BIG' problem as a result of inadequate space or equipment.  

The 'Big Fish' campaign is an initiative set up by NAW (National Aquarium Workshop) and the BIAZA Aquarium Working Group, following research that indicated that over a period of just 4 months, 11 UK aquaria were asked to house 144 fish that had outgrown their owners' tanks.

The Big Fish Campaign aims to:

  • Encourage the public to research properly the fish species that they wish to own as pets
  • Overturn the notion that fish will never outgrow the size of their tanks
  • Reduce the sale of these species in pet stores to protect their welfare
  • Alleviate the problem of public aquaria being pressurised into accepting these big fish

Other creatures found in the Amazon display include:

Results 1-8 of 8 | Page 1

Creature Name Scientific Name
Pacu Piaractus brachypomus View more...
Piranha, Red-Bellied Serrasalmus nattereri View more...
Terrapins, Red Eared Trachemys scripta elegans View more...
Catfish, Ripsaw Oxydoras niger View more...
Catfish, Tiger Shovel-Nose Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum View more...
Catfish, Redtail Phractocephalus hemioliopterus View more...
Otters, Oriental small clawed Aonyx cinerea View more...
Tortoise, Hingeback Kinixys homeana View more...

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