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Brachyrhamdia meesi



    This catfish has found a way to gain both the protection and food enjoyed by Corydoras by evolving to look and behave like one—they even school together. A beautiful little, long-whiskered fish that’s fairly rare in the home aquarium. Nocturnal.

Quick stats:

Listed tank sizes are the minimum
Size: 2.4 inches (6.1 cm)
Tank: 30 gallons (113.56 liters) or larger
Strata: Will go everywhere but predominantly bottom. Likes Sand – Medium Gravel.
PH: 6.0 – 7.2
Hardness: dh range 1 – 10dH
Temperature: 75°F to 79°F (24°-26° C)


Order: Siluriformes
Family: Heptapteridae
Genera: Brachyrhamdia
Species: Brachyrhamdia meesi

Common name:


Mees’ Pimelodid

    South America: Amazon River basin: Near Belem, Brazil and Rio Madre de Dios basin, Peru.

General Body Form:

    Pimelodids have bodies reminiscent of Otos in form, only elongated. Three pair of long, filamentous barbels spread from the snout. Fins are moderately long. The caudal fin is rounded and forked.


    Light salmon-colored body with pale green iridescence. A horizontal white stripe (inset with a thin black line) originates between the pectoral and anal fins and terminates in thin black and white bars at the caudal pendacle. A black mask covers the eyes and extends over the head. A black saddle extends over the dorsal fin terminating near the pectoral fins. Fins are translucent. The first dorsal spine as well as the top of the adapose fin are rimmed in smoky black.

Maintenance:Requires well-oxygenated, well-filtered water with a current in order to thrive. Does best when water is kept as soft as possible. Consider a longer tank with a large area of open water to give this fish the greatest benthic range. Sandy substrate protects their long sensory barbels. Provide hiding places along the tank’s periphery in the form of caves, driftwood roots and branches, pipes, lush plants and slate shelters arranged to allow quick entry and exit. Blue-moon lights or plants floating on the water’s surface provide diffused light and make the fish feel more secure. Excellent among peaceful, similarly-sized fish, in schools of at least 3 of its kind or within a community with Corydoras. Mimics the coloration, markings and behavior of Corydoras to the point of schooling with them, a phenomenon called Batesian mimicry. This affords them the protection of the school and the ability to pinch food from the Corys. Fish smaller than 1” and fry may be eaten. Corydoras may occasionally have their fins nipped. Excellent tankmates include characins, cyprinids and medium-sized Loricariids.





    Voracious eaters of all manner of prepared foods, including algae tablets, sinking pellets. Especially fond of live or frozen artemia, bloodworms, brine shrimp, daphnia, and mosquito larvae. Live foods are best reserved for conditioning or acclimatizing. Their tendency to overeat can be hazardous, feed foods that could expand once in the fish with care.


    An Moderate fish to care for, but as with any fish initial care must be taken.


    Found swimming above all types of bottom substrates: muddy, sandy and even small pebbles of shallow small tributaries of its home range.


    Spawning has been unsuccessful in captivity. Mature females are fuller-bodied than males.


5/5 - (18 votes)


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