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June 21, 2021
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Title Debauwi Catfish

Sara Waller

Last Updated



A brief description of the debauwi catfish.


The debauwi catfish (Pareutropius buffei) is a small catfish native to Nigeria, Niger, Benin, Mali, Guinea where it inhabits rivers and floodplains .  Mature fish reach a size of just over 3 inches long.  Females are generally have a more round belly and are slightly larger than males.  Adult females are noticeably plumper in the belly region than males when full of eggs.  Otherwise, there are no external distinguishing characteristics between the sexes.

The debauwi catfish should be maintained in an aquarium of 20 gallons or larger.  Smooth rocks, driftwood (ZM2000) and live or artificial plants may be used, as well as a sandy substrate (CS7538).  These fish look great in a heavily planted tank with a dark substrate and floating plants to diffuse some of the light.

The debauwi catfish prefers a water temperature of 75°F to 82°F, a pH of 6.05 to 7.0, and a hardness of 5 to 15°H.  Be sure water is clean and well oxygenated.  This little catfish is very sensitive to poor water quality so good biological filtration is highly recommended.

The debauwi catfish is suitable for a peaceful community aquarium.  Good tank mates include tetras, rasboras, cory catfish, otocinclus catfish, and small gouramis, and most other community fish.  Avoid large or aggressive fish as the debauwi catfish is easily intimidated.  Debauwi catfish should be kept in a shoal of at least 6 individuals or they may become overly shy and stop eating.


The debauwi catfish is easy to feed in the aquarium and will readily accept just about any appropriately sized food item such as flakes (AL165), sinking pellets (AL166), and frozen brine shrimp (SF6777) or blood worms (SF4792).   For maximum color, growth, and health these fish will look their best when given probiotics (AL169) in addition to a balanced diet.


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