Upside-Down Catfish

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Species group:

Other common names:

Scientific name: Synodontis nigriventris

The basics:
The Upside-Down Catfish is small member of the catfish family which is native to the Congo River basin in central Africa. They are nocturnal and feed on insects and crustaceans. Upside-Down Catfish are perhaps most notable for their upside down swimming style. Upside-Down Catfish are popular home aquarium fish because of their unique swimming style and docile nature. They do well in a tank which contains bogwood branches. It finds comfort in caves and hiding places among driftwood and broad-leafed plants. It swims, explores, and feeds upside down, and loves to feast on food particles (and insect larvae) floating on the surface. As a sucker-mouth fish, it also feeds from the substrate.

The Upside-Down Catfish is dark brown with light brown speckled markings all over the body, with the underside noticeably darker, to camouflage them from predators while feeding upside down. It is small, relative to other Catfishes (which is why it is often considered a dwarf Catfish) but, like the others in its species group, it has large eyes and a down-turned snout with three pairs of barbels. It has large adipose fins and a forked tail.

0-4 inchese:

The Upside-Down Catfish is hardy, peaceful, undemanding, and an excellent tankmate in community aquariums. It is semi-nocturnal, preferring to forage at low-light conditions.

Upside-Down Catfishes do well in average-sized community tanks that are well-planted and furnished with driftwood and floating bark. They hide under driftwood and use the floating bark as a hiding place while feeding off the surface of the water.

72.00-79.00 °F


80.000-200.000 mg/L


docile fish, favorite catfish, community tank, crowd pleaser, great companion fish, antics, personalities


hiding places, single specimen, barbs


inverted swimming habit, relish frozen bloodworms

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