The armored catfish family is very species-rich. The natural habitat of most species is the banks of South American rivers. A member of this large family is the panda catfish (Corydoras panda) originating from Peru. It can reach a body length of around 5 cm and, if kept appropriately, can live up to ten years.
Fish or Bear?
The panda armored catfish owes its name to its appearance: With its black blindfold and the spot in front of the tail fin, the otherwise reddish-brown fish is actually reminiscent of its namesake on land. Both sexes are the same size, with the male being slightly slimmer than the female.
The panda armored catfish is lively and hardy as well as extremely peaceful. For this reason, the schooling fish is ideal for keeping in community tanks. The panda armored catfish will easily accept small tetras or dwarf cichlids as its neighbors. However, socialization with larger species should be avoided. Therefore, if possible, more males than females should be kept in your own swarm.
Sand for Digging
You should choose sand or fine shrimp gravel as the substrate in the armored catfish tank because it likes to rummage through the ground with its whiskers in search of food. This means that the setup of its aquarium most closely corresponds to its natural habitat, where it mainly stays in the bank area. From time to time the panda armored catfish also looks in the upper water layer to breathe.
Retreats for the Lunch Break
The panda armored catfish not only likes to use the sand to hide. He will also be very happy about a dense border planting, the construction of stone caves, or clay tubes into which he can retreat. The panda armored catfish uses these retreats mainly for its lunch break.
The panda armored catfish is an omnivore. Nevertheless, he should also be fed a varied and balanced diet. Algae, small animals, and parts of plants should not be missing from his menu. When searching for food, the panda, like all other catfish species, has a decisive advantage over other fish in the aquarium: it can track down its food even in total darkness! You can simply give it food that is specially intended for armored catfish in the community tank at night. Leaves from sea almond trees or similar should also always be offered in the aquarium. It not only beautifies but also reduces the number of germs in the tank and offers a natural food basis for your catfish.