Common name: cascarudo
Synonyms and Other Names: armoured catfish
available through www.itis.gov
Identification: Callichthys callichthys belongs to the subfamily Callichthyinae of Family Callichthyidae. Reis (1997) provided a key to the genera of that group. Distinguishing characteristics and identification keys provided by Gosline (1940) and Burgess (1989), but these latter keys are outdated and should be used with caution. Color photographs are given in Burgess (1989).
Size: 20 cm TL.
Native Range: Tropical America. Widespread in South America including, but not limited to, the Amazon, Orinoco, and La Plata-Parana basins, the Guianas, and Trinidad (Burgess 1989).
Hydrologic Unit Codes (HUCs) Explained
Puerto Rico &
Interactive maps: Point Distribution Maps
A fish tentatively identified as this species was collected in a canal along Jog Road in Palm Beach County, Florida in the early 1970s (Courtenay and Hensley 1979). A single fish (102 mm TL) allegedly was caught by an angler in Great South Bay off Copiague in western Suffolk County, Long Island, New York, in June 1978 (P.T. Briggs, personal communication; Courtenay and Hensley 1979).
Table 1. States with nonindigenous occurrences, the earliest and latest observations in each state, and the tally and names of HUCs with observations†. Names and dates are hyperlinked to their relevant specimen records. The list of references for all nonindigenous occurrences of Callichthys callichthys are found here.
Table last updated 7/4/2022
† Populations may not be currently present.
Means of Introduction: Florida records may represent escape from fish farms or aquarium release. New York record, if valid, is a probable aquarium release.
Status: Failed in Florida and New York.
Impact of Introduction: The impacts of this species are currently unknown, as no studies have been done to determine how it has affected ecosystems in the invaded range. The absence of data does not equate to lack of effects. It does, however, mean that research is required to evaluate effects before conclusions can be made.
References: (click for full references)
Briggs, P.T. - Associate Aquatic Biologist, Finfish and Crustaceans Unit, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Stony Brook, New York (letter dated 19 September 1979 to James McCann)
Burgess, W.E. 1989. An atlas of freshwater and marine catfishes: a preliminary survey of the Siluriformes. Tropical Fish Hobbyist Publications, Inc., Neptune City, NJ.
Courtenay, W.R., Jr., and D.A. Hensley. 1979. Survey of introduced non-native fishes. Phase I Report. Introduced exotic fishes in North America: status 1979. Report Submitted to National Fishery Research Laboratory, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Gainesville, FL.
Gosline, W. A. 1940. Revision of the neotropical catfishes of the family Callichthyidae. Stanford Ichthyological Bulletin 2(1):1-29.
Revision Date: 4/30/2018
Peer Review Date: 6/22/2012
Nico, L., 2022, Callichthys callichthys (Linnaeus 1758): U.S. Geological Survey, Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database, Gainesville, FL, https://nas.er.usgs.gov/queries/FactSheet.aspx?speciesID=335, Revision Date: 4/30/2018, Peer Review Date: 6/22/2012, Access Date: 7/5/2022
This information is preliminary or provisional and is subject to revision. It is being provided to meet the need for timely best science. The information has not received final approval by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and is provided on the condition that neither the USGS nor the U.S. Government shall be held liable for any damages resulting from the authorized or unauthorized use of the information.