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Scientific Name Pimelodus ornatus  Kner, 1858
Common Names Ornate Pimelodus
Schmuckantennenwels (Germany), Smykkemalle (Denmark)
Type Locality Suriname; Rio Negro and Cuiabá, Brazil.
Synonym(s) Megalonema rhabdostigma
Pronunciation pim ee LOW duss - or NAT uss
Etymology pimele, fat; –odes, having the form of, i.e., fatty, referring to their adipose fins (at the time, this was a catch-all genus for many catfish species, most of which possess a “fatty” or adipose fin) [note: many online references report that –odes is derived from odous, meaning teeth, but this is incorrect]. The specific epithet means ornate or decorated in reference to the handsome patterning of the species.
Hop to next section Species Information
Size 385mm or 15.2" SL. Find near, nearer or same sized spp.
Identification A real show fish and a distinctive member of the genus making it difficult to confuse with others. Has a larger head than most other Pimelodus.
Sexing Not known.
Hop to next section Habitat Information
Distribution South America: Amazon, Corintijns, Essequibo, Orinoco, and Paraná River basins. Also in major rivers of the Guianas.
Guyana Waters, Coastal Rivers of Guyanas, Essequibo (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Guyana Waters, Coastal Rivers of Guyanas, Suriname Coastal Rivers, Corintijns (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Amazon (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Orinoco (click on these areas to find other species found there)
La Plata, Paraná (click on these areas to find other species found there)
Guyana Waters, Coastal Rivers of Guyanas, Essequibo, Rupununi (click on these areas to find other species found there)

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IUCN Red List Category Least Concern, range map and more is available on the IUCN species page. Last assessed 2020.
pH 6.0 - 7.2
Temperature 24.0-25.0°C or 75.2-77°F (Show species within this range)
Hop to next section Husbandry Information
Feeding An unfussy omnivore. Most prepared foods are taken and the fish will happily gorge itself on live or frozen foods. Bloodworm induces a feeding frenzy and is good for acclimatizing new, smaller acquisitions. The fish will eat huge amounts in one day, its belly swelling to resemble a marble and can comfortably live off this for up to a week. User data.
Furniture These fish will be considerably more active if given lots of cover at the sides of the aquarium that they can dart into when spooked. Floating plants are also a good idea as water current is unimportant.
Compatibility Peaceful but will eat smaller fishes.
Suggested Tankmates Larger active fish such as tetras, most barbs and gouramis. They can also be kept in groups but do not suffer from being kept singly. Angelfish and other ''graceful'' fish are sometimes bothered by this species' barbels particularly during ''lights-out''.
Breeding Unreported in the aquarium.
Breeding Reports There is no breeding report.
Hop to next section Further Information
Reference Sitzungsberichte der Kaiserlichen Akademie der Wissenschaften. Mathematisch-Naturwissenschaftliche Classe v. 26 (s. 373), pp 411 [41], Pl. 6 (fig. 18).
Registered Keepers There is no registered keeper.
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There are 8 records of this fish being seen, view them all.
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Pimelodus ornatus QR code LFS label creator
ARN ref:1.15.101.428
Last Update 2024 Apr 20 01:36 (species record created: 2001 Apr 22 00:00)