Common names from other countries
Teleostei (teleosts) > Siluriformes
(Catfishes) > Callichthyidae
(Callichthyid armored catfishes) > Callichthyinae
Etymology: Hoplosternum: Greek, hoplon = weapon + Greek, sternon = chest (Ref. 45335).
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Freshwater; demersal; depth range 1 - ? m (Ref. 11225). Subtropical; 18°C - 26°C (Ref. 2060); 11°N - 37°S
South America: Most Cis-Andean South American river drainages north of Buenos Aires, Argentina (Ref. 37395). Introduced in the USA (Ref. 104645).
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm 16.7  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 26.3 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 104645); max. reported age: 4 years (Ref. 51639)
Obligate air-breathing (Ref. 126274); Inhabits swamps (Ref. 11225). During the rainy season, adults consume a great quantity of chironomids associated with detritus. During the dry season, they feed mostly on terrestrial insects, micro-crustaceans, aquatic Diptera, and detritus. Absorbs a great quantity of anaerobic bacteria from the substrate (Ref. 27188). First reproduction occurs after one year (Ref. 35381). Used to be cultured commercially in Guyana (Ref. 7306). Cultured in Trinidad on a semi-commercial scale (Ref. 11225).
Reproduction begins with the rainy season (December-January). The male, at times helped by the female, builds a nest made of a cluster of mucus bubbles and vegetal matter. Responding to a nuptial parade, the female lays down her eggs (5,000 to 20,000, measuring1.8 mm in diameter) which are fertilized by sprinkling sperm previously collected in her mouth. The male guards the eggs during incubation and becomes very aggressive (Ref. 35381).
Reis, R.E., 1997. Revision of the neotropical catfish genus Hoplosternum (Ostariophysi: Siluriformes: Callichthyidae), with the description of two new genera and three new species. Ichthyol. Explor. Freshwat. 7(3-4):299-326. (Ref. 26144)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 123251)
CITES (Ref. 128078)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: commercial; aquaculture: commercial; aquarium: commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82804
= 0.6250 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01950 (0.01418 - 0.02681), b=3.00 (2.91 - 3.09), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this species (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 2.7 ±0.0 se; based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (tmax=4; K=0.6-1.3; Fec = 5,000).
Fishing Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (16 of 100).