Asian Bumblebee Catfish

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Pseudomystus siamensis - (Regan, 1913)
Asian Bumblebee Catfish

A relatively small member of the much-liked Bagrid Catfish Family. Aaron Norman


The Asian Bumblebee Catfish is a fascinating addition to collections of larger fishes and a favorite among catfish enthusiasts. It may make an audible noise when removed from the water. It will do best in a community of species that can fend for themselves as this catfish may nip fins and eat small fishes.

Family: Bagridae

Other common name(s):

Native range:

Habitat: The Asian Bumblebee Catfish needs a tank with sufficient caves in the form of stones, inverted flowerpots, large black PVC pipe, or rock piles with openings throughout, to provide each fish its own cave. Decorate with driftwood and artificial or live plants.

Maximum length: 15 cm (6 in)

Minimum aquarium size: 114 L (30 gal)

Water: Freshwater 22 °C (72 °F) - 26 °C (79 °F)

General swimming level: Bottom


Carnivore. This species consumes insects and small aquatic crustaceans in the wild, but will adapt to most commercial meaty catfish foods in the aquarium, including good-quality flakes, pellets, sinking wafers with shrimp, as well as live and frozen foods, such as bloodworms, Tubifex worms and brine shrimp. Feed first thing in the morning and just after the lights go out at night.

Aquarium Compatibility

Pseudomystus siamensis may be territorial and aggressive. Continuous clicking noises during the night may signal potential aggressive interactions, and it may be necessary to remove the belligerent culprits.


Not reported in the aquarium, but may lay its eggs among roots in the wild.

Reference: 101 Best Tropical Fishes
Image credit: AN
Text credit: KW