Heteropneustes fossilis (Bloch, 1794)
Stinging catfish
photo by Ramani Shirantha

Family:  Heteropneustidae (Airsac catfishes)
Max. size:  41.2 cm TL (male/unsexed); max.weight: 400.0 g
Environment:  demersal; freshwater; brackish; pH range: 6 - 8; dH range: 30; depth range - 1 m
Distribution:  Asia: Pakistan and Sri Lanka to Myanmar. Introduced elsewhare.
Biology:  Adults found mainly in ponds, ditches, swamps and marshes, but sometimes occur in muddy rivers. Recorded as having been or being farmed in rice fields (Ref. 119549). Can tolerate slightly brackish water. Omnivorous. Breed in confined waters during the monsoon months, but can breed in ponds, derelict ponds and ditches when sufficient rain-water accumulates. Oviparous, distinct pairing possibly like other members of the same family (Ref. 205). In great demand due to its medicinal value. Venomous fish, from its pectoral spines (Ref. 94495).
IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC); Date assessed: 11 August 2019 Ref. (130435)
Threat to humans:  traumatogenic

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