Glass Catfish – Kryptopterus bicirrhis
Glass Catfish – Kryptopterus bicirrhis is a peaceful river dwelling, schooling freshwater fish. It is a predatory fish that will eat a variety of sinking foods. It has a body that is elongated and laterally compressed. Glass Catfish are scaleless and they lack body pigment, which makes the body transparent in appearance. Internal organs and backbone are clearly visible to the eye. In certain angles in the light, their bodies can harbor a beautiful, iridescent rainbow color. On the upper jaw is located a pair of large barbels. Their dorsal fin is rather small, having only one ray, and the caudal fin is forked in shape.
Common Name: Glass Catfish, Asian Glass Catfish, Ghost Catfish
Scientific Name: Kryptopterus bicirrhis
Typical Adult Fish Size: 5 inches / 12 cm
Natural Habitat: ‘Java, Indonesia’. This species is found today throughout parts of Southeast Asia including major river systems in Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam and Peninsular Malaysia and including the Greater Sunda Islands of Sumatra, Java and Borneo. It has been widely recorded among the Mekong, Chao Phraya, Batang Hari, Rajang and Kapuas rivers in addition to smaller drainage water across these ranges.
Ideal Tank Ecosystem: Décor is not necessary, however decor is always highly recommended by our fish specialists. All fish should have some kind of plants, whether artificial or live, or types of decor or rock to encourage hiding cover. In turn, décor and plants help to reduce the stress levels in any freshwater fish aquarium and will reflect the health and environment of the fish. The closer you mimic their natural habitat in the wild, the greater chance for success. Ensure that you are introducing this glass catfish to an aquarium that has been cycled. If you are adding any fish into a tank that is not cycled, refer to a TNT specialist for further instruction on how to safely add them and what you will need in order to do so.
Recommended Aquarium Capacity: 55 gallon / 240 litre
Species Compatibility: Peaceful fish. Will feed on smaller fish species. Can be timid around other larger species of freshwater fish. Tank mates are relatively close sized loaches, cyprinids and other catfish types. The glass catfish likes to school in numbers of 4 or greater.
Care Level: Intermediate+
Aquarium Water Temperature: 69 – 82°F / 20 – 28°C
Aquarium Water pH: Range pH 6.0 – 7.5
Feeding: Mostly a predatory specie. Feeds on invertebrates, crustaceans and smaller fishes in the wild. Choose a complete, varied, diet including sinking dried foods, Tubifex (bottom dwelling worm), live and frozen bloodworms, etc., and you can also offer the occasional small sized Earthworm. A variety of foods is necessary for your Glass Catfish – Kryptopterus bicirrhis to thrive in captivity.
Sexing: Adult males usually appear slimmer than the females.
Other Considerations: This species is uncommon in the aquarium trade. It’s name has been referred to as congener K. vitreolus in older literature pieces. These two species are readily identified on their own since K. bichirris does not feature a transparent body.
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