(not from the net!)
It's not true that clarias have poison spines on their pectoral fins, that is the speciality of another catfish, Heteropneustes fossilis, which in fact is tougher and smaller than clarias. My clarias live in a large outdoor tank and are fed earthworms, fish guts, insects, and they also eat mosquito larvae with great pleasure. Clarias tend to grow pretty big, so don't get one unless you have a large tank or can shift it to a bigger tank later. You need to cover your tank well.
I bought this guy because after my lobster was eaten, I needed a new bottom feeder for my oscar tank. I was told they grow quickly...and quickly they do grow. From 10 cm to about 23 cm in a mere 3 months. And this guy would eat...everything. Big or small, fresh or old. He'd eat every piece of food I put in the tank, stealing from my oscar. He'd even eat the feeder fish. I had to trade him in...his eating habits are enough to make you go broke. Keep this guy in a pond with Koi...not in an aquarium, unless you want to see what starving fish look like.
I bought my first pair of clarias from a local aquarium store for $5 a pair (for the piebald pink albino). They were about 6 cm long when I got them home and introduced them to my community tank (big mistake). When they were about 10 cm in length, I realised that they were preying upon my tiger barbs and corydoras! Later, one of them walked away while I was cleaning the tank, and yeah, by the time I found it (that was like three hours of a grueling search) it was half dead. I still have the other one (23 cm now), and it enjoys the freeze dried worms and hates the pellets. Seems to like guppies too. I'd suggest people interested in keeping clarias to keep a watch on their clarias during a complete water change, because thats how I lost my previous fish, they jump high! Do not keep any small community fishes with the clarias...you'll regret it!
My Clarias is a great fish. It eats like a hog! Sometimes, due to my clarias' eating habits, my bichir does not get enough food, so I put in some freeze dried shrimp as my clarias does not like those. When I bought him he was small, but now he has grown into a monster. Remember to always provide extra space for him as he grows tremendously big.
Yes I agree this is a fantastic fish for an aquaium starting from 200 liters. I bought two Clarias batrachus, both about 7 cm, and now after only 80 days the male is 26 cm and female 29 cm. They are very frendly, even with little corydoras cats. I feed them two times a day with shrimp, chicken, red worms and Hikari pellets for carnivorous fish. Temperature is about 24°C and every week I do 15% water changes. I'm in love with this catfish.
I have had a pair for almost 12 months. I bought them at 7 cm, now the male is 37 cm and female is 39 cm, with the biggest stomach I've ever seen. I keep my Clarias batrachus alone in a 450 L aquarium at 24°C, with 1000 L/h EHEIM filter. They eat well every evening at 10 pm. Menu includes only HIKARI pellets and cow heart. They've spawned 4 times, but all eggs every time got fungus in 16-20 hours. Now everything went right and I got FRY of Clarias batrachus. I want a thousand little ones!
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