Tropical Fish for Freshwater Aquariums: Synodontis Angelicus Catfish

These fish tend to be shy when first introduced to a new environment, but once adapted to their surroundings, many aquarists find them to be favorites in the aquarium. They are active and interesting to watch once comfortable, swimming at strange angles (the upside-down catfish may be the best known for this behavior). Synodontis are also referred to as squeaker cats, named for their ability to create a squeaking noise with their pectoral fins when they’re alarmed.

Tiger Shovelnose Catfish. Exclusively for VERY large aquariums. 500 gallons & up.

Whiptail catfish have much to recommend them. They play nice with other fish and have an interesting, angular appearance to their bodies. However, they don't seem to show up in aquariums as often as their pleco cousins, possibly because they do not have that same reputation for eating algae. In the right tank, a whiptail can make a nice point of interest.

Fish profiles for African Catfish aquarium fish

Most species of catfish are extremely hardy and make for fascinating aquarium specimens. The Otocinclus catfish is one of the best and favorite algae eaters in the hobby. It does a really great job at keeping your aquarium glass, décor, and plants free of algae. The ‘Oto’ catfish is one of the smallest catfish in the Loricariidae family. These little lawn mowers have a fierce appetite and will require an algae supplement in the form of a flake or wafer if there is not enough algae present in the aquarium.

cool freshwater catfish for aquariums, Sorubim lima - YouTube

Banjo Catfish are the epitome of a peaceful nature. They get along excellently in a community tank, though they are reclusive and nocturnal so may be rarely seen. Banjo Catfish are fine alone or in groups of their own kind, and can coexist with the smallest and most docile of fish. But be careful when adding them to a tank with boisterous and aggressive fish. This could end badly for the Banjo because they have few defenses and rely on camouflage, which is hard to achieve in an aquarium.

Saltwater Aquarium Fish for Marine Aquariums: Coral Catfish


The Redtail Catfish (Phractocephalus hemioliopterus) can get up to around 50 inches (130 cm) or larger in size when fully grown! The more commonly seen sizes are around half that - 25 inches (65 cm) or so. They are considered fast growers and will outgrow 99 percent of home aquariums so it's best to not buy this catfish unless you have a large backyard pond to put them in. The redtail catfish can live for many, many years so putting one in a small tank that they can quickly outgrow is not a good idea at all.Channel catfish which are known for their tender and well tasting meat are not only a culinary treat and popular sport fish but also an appreciate aquarium fish among those who have the facilities to be able to keep them (I will talk more about keeping Channel Catfish in aquariums later) . Channel Catfish are very similar to Blue Catfish but they can be easily distinguished from each other by looking at their anal fins. If the anal fin is rounded than your fish is a Channel catfish. You can also make an educated guess of the species depending on where you caught your catfish. Blue catfish are primarily found in rapidly moving water and if you catch one of these catfish in a lake or a reservoir it’s most likely a Channel catfish.