Catfish News & Announcements

Posted 19 February 2009
New Publication: English translation of P. Bleeker's (1858) Ichthyologiae Archipelagi Indici Prodromus. Vol. 1. Siluri (by van Oijen, Loots & Limburg)
March 6, 2009, is the anticipated publication date of this complete English translation of Bleeker's historical document on 99 species of catfishes occurring in the Indonesian Archipelago (originally written in Dutch and Latin). Bleeker's (1858) Siluri volume (370 p) is a compilation of all his papers on catfishes from 1845-1858 and a review of all publications on this group by other ichthyologists prior to 1858. The new publication includes color illustrations that were intended for, but not included in the original work. The translation was compiled by M.J.P. van Oijen, G.M.P. Loots and F.J.G. Limburg with financial support from the All Catfish Species Inventory. To download Order Form, click here.

Posted 30 September 2008
Neotropical Ichthyology Special Catfish Issue
Neotropical Ichthyology, with funding from and in cooperation with ACSI, publishes the second Special Catfish Issue containing 22 papers (250 pages) contributed by 48 authors with descriptions of 30 new species and 2 new genera of catfishes plus a morphological/molecular analysis of the loricariid genus Ixinandria. The issue was co-edited by Luiz R. Malabarba and Carl J. Ferraris, Jr., along with sectional editors Mônica S. de Toledo-Piza Ragazzo, Roberto E. Reis and Mark H. Sabaj Pérez. The papers can be downloaded from the NI website at (click on "Volumes publicados", then on "2008, volume 6(3)"). For a list of papers and authors, click here.

Posted 5 September 2008
ACSI in DC [article in BioScience magazine]
On 25 June 2008 Mark Sabaj Pérez and John Sullivan presented a poster on the All Catfish Species Inventory at the Coalition for National Science Funding Exhibition & Reception at the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington, DC. The event was well attended by researchers, educators, students, NSF officials and a few Congressmen including Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio). For a photo of Congressman Kucinich visiting the catfish poster click here. To download a pdf of the poster click here.

Posted 24 June 2008
Flathead catfish saved from drying spillway
Des Moines Register article by Tom Alex on the rescue of flathead catfishes, Pylodictis olivaris, from drying lake in Saylorville, Iowa.

Posted 23 June 2008
New catfish named for Academy mailroom supervisor of 37 years
Philadelphia Inquirer article by Sandy Bauers on the naming of a new thornycat, Rhinodoras gallagheri, for Frank Gallagher to honor his 37 years of shipping and receiving biological specimens at The Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia. The species was named by Mark Sabaj, Donald Taphorn and Otto Castillo in their paper published in the 2008(1) issue of Copeia. Philadelphia's NBC news also covered the story in an interview with Mark Sabaj on June 26 (click here to view mpg).

Posted 1 January 2008
Ferraris' Checklist of Catfishes is Zootaxa's hottest paper in 2007
The "Checklist of Catfishes..." by Carl J. Ferraris, Jr., co-PI on the All Catfish Species Inventory, ranked no. 2 among the 5 most-accessed papers in December 2007 published by the journal Zootaxa. Carl's checklist also made the top 5 in every previous month since its publication in March 2007 and is considered the "hottest paper in Zootaxa during 2007" (Zhi-Qiang, Chief editor & Founder, Zootaxa). The full article is open access and may be downloaded here.

Posted 19 November 2007
8-Foot giant catfish caught in Cambodia
National Geographic News story by Stefan Lovgren on the capture and release of a Mekong giant catfish, Pangasius (or Pangasianodon) gigas, in Tonle Sap River, Cambodia. Only one giant catfish has been caught in 2007 according to Zeb Hogan, University of Reno, Nevada.

Posted 17 May 2007
Hail Linnaeus: Conservationists – and polar bears – should heed the lessons of economics (alternate link)
Economist Article on Linnaean taxonomy and 21st Century species definitions (e.g., "a species is what a taxonomist says it is").

Posted 12 May 2007
Biology the trouble with taxonomy: Cataloguing the wild kingdom
The Globe and Mail article by Zoe Cormier on 21st Century taxonomy including comments on species concepts, collections, molecular techniques, and bar coding.

Posted 7 May 2007
Neotropical Ichthyology – Call for Papers
The Sociedade Brasileira de Ictiologia (SBI) and the All Catfish Species Inventory (ASCI) are pleased to announce that the third issue of Volume 6 of Neotropical Ichthyology (NI), scheduled to be published in September, 2008, will once again be dedicated to papers announcing the discovery of new species of Neotropical catfishes (full announcement).

Posted 24 October 2006
New Book: Subterranean Fishes of the World
New book (300 pages, 87 b/w figs, 20 color plates) authored by Graham S. Proudlove (The Manchester Museum, Univ. Manchester) and illustrated by Rhian Hicks gives an account of the subterranean (hypogean) fishes described up to 2003 with a bibliography 1541–2004. Available from (North America), (Europe), (UK), (UK); price 50 Euros, 65 USD, 132 Reais. Click here to download document with further details.

Posted 28 September 2006
DeepFin Student Exchange Program *Call for Applications*
The DeepFin research coordination network of systematic ichthyologists and biologists announces its new initiative to faciliate student training through an exchange program. Students may apply to DeepFin to visit participating ichthyology laboratories to learn new molecular techniques, fish morphology, fish development, or other aspects directly related to DeepFin's ultimate goal to decipher the evolutionary relationships of all fishes and establish their phylogenetic tree. Click here to download announcement for details on how to apply. Please note that this opportunity is only available to students currently in the USA (due to funding restrictions by the National Science Foundation).

Posted 4 July 2006
Catfish Power
NewScientist blog on a proposal by a Vietnamese firm (Agifish) to commercialize catfish fat as a biofuel to run in diesel engines.

Posted 12 June 2006
Fatherly types make females swoon
Philadelphia Inquirer article by Faye Flam that takes a lighthearted look at the hypothesis of larval mimicry in bristlenose plecos, Genus Ancistrus, Family Loricariidae (based in part on interview with Mark Sabaj) [alternate link].

Posted 10 May 2006
"Catfish Planet" exhibit press release
The National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium in Dubuque, Iowa, announces 27 May 2006 opening of new public exhibit on catfishes that includes over 100 species of catfishes on live display in 21 aquaria. ACSI Co-PI John Lundberg contributed expertise and various materials to the exhibit in which the work of the All Catfish Species Inventory is mentioned.

Posted 10 May 2006
Planetary biodiversity inventories: a response to the taxonomic crisis
ActionBioscience online article by Lawrence Page (ACSI Co-PI) summarizing the midterm results of the All Catfish Species Inventory and the project's positive impact on taxonomic research.

Posted 9 May 2006
How Kipper the catfish burnt the house down
Times Online article by Simon de Bruxelles on a pet catfish (Mystus sp.?) suspect in causing the fire that burned down its owner's home in Dorset [alternate link].

Posted 13 April 2006
Eel catfish can strike its prey on land
Sam Van Wassenbergh, Anthony Herrel, Dominique Adriaens, Frank Huysentruyt, Stijn Devaere and Peter Aerts of the University of Antwerp (SVW, AH) and Ghent University publish in Nature remarkable findings regarding the ability of African clariid Channallabes apus to forage and capture prey on land. Discovery featured in the New York Times (link to video clip) and National Geographic News.

Posted 4 February 2006
Poachers use power line to reel in yeti of the waters
The Times article from Jeremy Wade in Bhikya Sein on the local use of electricity and dynamite to kill giant "goonch" catfish, Bagarius bagarius (Sisoridae) in the Himalayan region of northern India.

Posted 26 December 2005
Special catfish issue of Neotropical Ichthyology
Special ACSI sponsored issue of Neotropical Ichthyology introduces 28 new species of catfishes from South America. Thanks to editors Luiz Malabarba, Roberto Reis and Carl Ferraris, the contributing authors, and the Sociedade Brasileira de Ictiologia.

Posted 1 November 2005
Catfish inventory has Smithsonian scientist exploring rivers and streams the world over [alternate link]
Inside Smithsonian Research article by John Barrat on the catfish research of Dr. Richard Vari (USNM) and his contributions to the All Catfish Species Inventory.

Posted 26 August 2005
Truly, it was a whopper, but are there bigger fish? [alternate link]
Hat Khrai Journal article by Seth Mydans (published in the New York Times) featuring the catch of a 646-pound (294kg) Pangasius (or Pangasianodon) gigas measuring 9 feet (3m) total length. The giant catfish was caught by Thirayuth Panthayom near Hat Khrai on the Mekong in Thailand and photographed by Suthep Kritsanavarin). Article includes comments by Zeb Hogan regarding his study of the world's largest freshwater fishes.

Posted 25 July 2005
Neotropical catfish reported from Minnesota Lake
A specimen of the Neotropical catfish family Pimelodidae (Sorubim sp.) was found in a lake in Minnesota. Photos received from Pam Schofield (USGS, Gainesville, Florida). For additional info see USGS Nonindigenous Aquatic Species webpage.

Posted 18 July 2005
Study shows Vietnamese catfish top U.S. [alternate link]
Associated Press article by Janet McConnaughey on the results of a comparison (for quality, safety and taste) of frozen "basa" catfish imported from Vietnam to frozen channel catfish farm-raised in the US. Includes quote from ACSI Co-PI John Lundberg.

Posted 29 June 2005
Grizzly Bear-Size Catfish Caught in Thailand
National Geographic News report by James Owen on the catch of a 293 kg Pangasius (or Pangasianodon) gigas, largest freshwater fish ever recorded for Thailand. The catch also was reported on by the Associated Press.

Posted 22 June 2005
Freckled madtom a big catch [alternate link]
Chicago Sun-Times article by staff reporter Dale Bowman on the recent re-discovery of the freckled madtom (Noturus nocturnus) by Frank Veraldi and James Ladonski in the Des Plaines River, an urban waterway near Chicago, Illinois. Includes quotes by ACSI participant Phil Willink (FMNH) who noted that this madtom has not been found so close to Chicago in at least 100 years.

Posted 27 May 2005
Lacantunia enigmatica (Teleostei: Siluriformes) a new and phylogenetically puzzling freshwater fish from Mesoamerica [pdf]
Zootaxa publishes description of the "Chiapas catfish" in a paper co-authored by ACSI participants Rocío Rodiles-Hernández, Dean A. Hendrickson, John G. Lundberg and Julian M. Humphries. The birth of this new species, genus, and family of catfish made CNN Science & Space headlines [alternate link] and prompted an ANSP press release. Additional scientific information on Lacantunia enigmatica, including catscan images and animations produced by Julian Humphries and Kyle Luckenbill, available at Catfish Bones website

Posted 24 May 2005
Yo, fish! It's a 124 pounder [alternate link]
Chicago Sun-Times article by Dale Bowman on a pending world-record blue catfish (Ictalurus furcatus) caught by Tim Pruitt below the Melvin Price Locks and Dam on the Mississippi River at Alton. Coincidentally, Alton is the site of the furthest inland record of the bull shark, Carcharhinus leucas, in North America (Thomerson, 1977).

Posted 3 April 2005
Amazon gives up deepest secrets [alternate link]
The Observer article by Robin McKie and Vanessa Thorpe on the discovery of a new species of trichomycterid catfish in the Brazilian Amazon. Featured are quotes by Mario de Pinna (Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo) and an invitation for readers to vote among 5 different scientific names proposed for the new species of Paracanthopoma via a BBC webpage (

Posted 12 March 2005
The Adventures of Catfish Woman
Interview: Hooked on catfish
[alternate link]
NewScientist interview by Adrian Barnett of Lúcia Rapp Py-Daniel, researcher at Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia (INPA), Manaus, Brasil. [pdf]

Posted 5 February 2005
Getting high off fish goo a hoax [alternate link]
Tallahassee Democrat newspaper article by Tony Bridges that uncovers the origin and exposes the fallacy of the "urban legend" attributing hallucinogenic properties to catfish slime.

Posted 29 January 2005
Catfish licking: a new high? [alternate link]
Tallahassee Democrat newspaper article by Tony Bridges on the hallucinogenic myths surrounding gafftops or sailcats (Bagre marinus).

Posted 23 December 2004
Emporia St. professor discovers new catfish [alternate link]
AP story on the discovery and description of Batasio macronotus from Nepal by David Edds and Heok Hee Ng (publication funded by ACSI). Story also covered by KCTV 5 News, Kansas City [original link | alternate link]

Posted 15 August 2004
Calling All Catfish [alternate link]
All Catfish Species Inventory briefly noted in Popular Mechanics Magazine's "Science Technology Watch" section.

Posted 22 June 2004
ACSI Workshop in Grahamstown
In June a total of 20 ichthyologists from 12 countries participated in the African workshop organized by Paul Skelton, South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity (SAIAB), and Co-PIs John Friel and Larry Page. The workshop included presentations on ACSI methods and support mechanisms, ongoing and planned research projects, and roundtable discussions to describe and coordinate research.

Posted 10 June 2004
ACSI Workshop in Singapore
In March a total of 18 ichthyologists from 6 countries participated in the Asia-Austraila workshop organized by Peter Ng, National University of Singapore, and Co-PIs Carl Ferraris and Larry Page. The workshop included presentations on ACSI methods and support mechanisms, ongoing and planned research projects, and roundtable discussions to describe and coordinate research.

Posted May 2004
Catfish Hunters
Explore Research at the University of Florida (Vol. 9, No. 1) magazine article by Aaron Hoover on the All Catfish Species Inventory. Features description and goals of project based on interview with Larry Page (Florida Museum of Natural History). Also includes quotes by Jim Woolley (National Science Foundation) on Planetary Biodiversity Inventories and by Rocío Rodiles Hernández (ANSP postdoc) and John Lundberg (ANSP) on the Chiapas catfish discovery. Images of fieldwork and catfishes by Randy Olson and Mark Sabaj (ANSP).

Posted 6 May 2004
Caracterización ictiológica en la cuenca media del río Atrato, Quibdo, Chocó
Instituto Humboldt article on ACSI-funded project led by Javier A. Maldonado O. that will survey the río Atrato, Colombia, for new catfishes.

Posted May 2004
The Imperiled Giants of the Mekong
American Scientist article by Zeb Hogan, Peter Moyle, Bernie May, M. Jake Vander Zanden and Ian Baird on conservation efforts to save the Mekong giant catfish (Pangasianodon gigas).

Posted 27 February 2004
Record-breaking catfish
All Tackle record broken for the Mekong giant catfish (Pangasianodon gigas).

Posted 19 January 2004
FAPESP funds catfish research
The Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo recently funded two catfish projects. Flávio Bockmann (Universidade de São Paulo) received a grant for his project: SISTEMÁTICA, REVISÃO TAXONÔMICA E BIOGEOGRAFIA DA TRIBO HEPTAPTERINI GILL, 1861 (OSTARIOPHYSI, SILURIFORMES, HEPTAPTERIDAE). And Alexandre Marceniuk (Universidade de São Paulo, advisor Naercio Menezes) was awarded a postdoctoral fellowship to continue his taxonomic and systematic work on Ariidae.

Posted 18 January 2004
Man catches 121-pound blue catfish
Texas angler reels in large Ictalurus furcatus. Click here to see related story (with photos) by Lynn Burkhead, ESPN Outdoors.

Posted Monday, 23 December 2003
New Catfish Exhibit at the Academy of Natural Sciences
The All Catfish Species Inventory is proud to announce the opening of a new public exhibit on catfishes at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia. The catfish exhibit is part of a larger presentation of Academy research that is on display in a high-traffic area near the museum main entrance. For details on the display, list of contributors and a photograph of the exhibit click here.

Posted Monday, 1 December 2003
Trying to save a catfish as big as a bear
Associated Press article presented by on the status of the Mekong giant catfish (Pangasianodon gigas). Story features the conservation research of ACSI participant Zeb Hogan.

Posted November 2003
US-NSF Planetary Biodiversity Inventories: Global quest for catfish
Diversitas article by John Lundberg gives a brief synopsis of ACSI. To download pdf of article, visit, click on Publications link, and then 5th issue.

Posted Tuesday, 18 November 2003
Giant catfish critically endangered, group says
National Geographic News article by Ryan Mitchell and David Braun on the updated listing of the Mekong giant catfish (Pangasianodon gigas) as "Critically Endangered" by the World Conservation Union (IUCN). Story refers to ACSI participant Zeb Hogan and his work with the Mekong Fish Conservation Project.

Posted Wednesday, 12 November 2003
Rare catfish put on critical list
Short BBC article on the listing of the Mekong giant catfish as "critically endangered".

Posted 22 October 2003
The Academy of Natural Sciences Co-Leads $4.7 Million Global Catfish Species Inventory
ANSP Press release on ACSI project. Visit or click here to download. Release picked up by Baltimore Sun.

Posted Wednesday, 15 October 2003
Scientists: Virus likely cause of catfish kill
Associated Press story on kill of hardhead catfishes (Arius felis) along Alabama coast.

Posted Friday, 29 August 2003
"Punk Catfish"
Reuters story on the ichthyological findings of the 2000 Rapid Assessment Program in the Caura River Basin, Venezuela. Among the discoveries is a new species of loricariid [presumably in the genus Ancistrus or ? Neblinichthys] dubbed the "punk" catfish. Story quotes ACSI participant Antonio Machado-Allison, Universidad Central de Venezuela, Caracas.

Posted Monday, 24 August 2003
"Okie Noodling"
Quicktime trailer for a Little League Pictures film produced by James Payne, Damon Cook & Bob E. Peru, edited by Andrew Mayer, and directed & photographed by Bradley Beesley with "primary souns" by The Flaming Lips. Video segments highlight noodling techniques and philosophies for collecting flathead catfishes (Pylodictis olivaris). For more information visit:

Posted Monday, 4 August 2003
Fish of a Feather
Newsweek article by Gersh Kuntzman in which "catfish experts" (= ACSI participants) weigh in on the taxonomic statuses of ictalurids and pangasiids. Article discusses Vietnamese catfish, American markets, and the results of a catfish taste test. If official link is unavailable click here.

Posted Thursday, 31 July 2003
Legendary Dog-Eating Catfish Dies
Short Reuters' story on a "killer" Silurus glanis in Germany.

Posted Tuesday, 22 July 2003
The New York Times
The Great Catfish War
Editorial on the US government's regulation of catfish imports that includes Congressional definitions of the word "catfish". Click here for link to NY Times website.

Posted 15 July 2003
New Book: CLOFFSCA – Check List of the Freshwater Fishes of South and Central America
A new book edited by Roberto E. Reis, Carl J. Ferraris, Jr. and Sven O. Kullander (published by EDIPUCRS – Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul, is a biodiversity inventory of the freshwater fishes of South and Central America, including the Caribbean islands. A total of 64 authors from South America, North America and Europe contributed to the taxonomic summaries of each family or subfamily of Neotropical fishes. Entries for each fish species include valid name and synonyms, author, year and page of original descriptions, type locality, and catalog number and depository of primary type specimens. In addition, contextual information for each species includes maximum length, geographical distribution, countries of occurrence, common names, and remarks and references. A general introduction and a list of references complete the chapter for each family. This book is a necessary reference to all those working on systematics or general ichthyology of Neotropical fishes.
Click here for: HTML order form
Or visit and try instructions below:
1) At upper left corner type in "Check List" and click red arrow to go.
2) Select "Check List of the Freshwater Fishes of South and Central America".
3) Click on red shopping cart or red tag [Comprar Livro].
4) Select number of copies desired. If you change from "1" then click on link "Se você alterou..." to recalculate total. Click on red tag [Ir ao Caixa].
5) Type in your email and select "e sou do exterior". Click on [Continuar].
6) Confirm your email and fill in your name, address, sex, birthday and choose a password (senha). Fill in a telefone number and choose an option at the "Mais Cultura box". Click on [Continuar Compra] at the bottom.
7) Select shipping option - Sedex International recommended. Fill in your Credit Card data and click on [Confirmar Pedido].

Posted 14 July 2003
Fish fossils reveal Roman trade routes
Genetics shows ancient Anatolians imported Egyptian catfish
Nature article by Helen R. Pilcher on the discovery of a hitherto unknown Roman trade route as revealed by the fossilized remains of a 1400-year-old catfish identified as the clariid Clarias gariepinus. Oddly enough, a radiograph appearing with the article depicts the skeleton of a callichthyid catfish (perhaps a species of Corydoras). [if Nature link unavailable, click here]

Posted 15 May 2003
Big Trouble for Asia's Giant Catfish
National Geographic article by John Roach featuring Zeb Hogan and the Mekong Fish Conservation Project, an effort to protect vulnerable populations of migratory fish in the Mekong River Basin, including the endangered Giant Catfish, Pangasianodon gigas.

Posted Friday, 28 February 2003
All Catfish Species Inventory website featured in SCIENCE's NetWatch
The ACSI website was featured in an article by Mitch Leslie for the NetWatch section of Science Magazine (Vol 299, No 5611, P 1289).
To view article visit: or click here to download pdf.

Posted Monday, 13 January 2003
Announcements of Two New Catfish Books:

Two-volume book (published by Science Publishers, Inc.) contains 26 scientific chapters on anatomy, function and functional morphology, and phylogenetic relationships among siluriforms and systematics of certain catfishes groups (Volume 1); and, fossil record and paleodistribution, ecology and ethology, development and sensory biology (Volume 2). Book edited by Gloria Arratia (Museum für Naturkunde der, Humbolt Universitaet, Berlin, Germany), B.G. Kapoor (formerly Professor of Zoology, Gwalior University, India) and Michel Chardon and Rui Diogo (Laboratory of Functional and Evolutionary Morphology, University of Liège, Belgium).
Or visit to download pdf order form.
For further questions on book availability, please contact Dr. Primlani, Science Publishers Inc at
Catfish Morphology, Phylogeny and Macroevolution
A Case Study in Theoretical Phylogeny and Macroevolution
Approx. 600 page book by Rui Diogo
(to be published by Science Publishers, Inc. in November, 2003) on the higher-level phylogeny of catfishes that includes discussions of their general evolution and the implications for macroevolutionary theories.
visit to download pdf order form.

Posted Wednesday, 18 December 2002
Duom Kor Journal
Mission on the Mekong: Save the Giant Catfish
Article by Seth Mydans (The New York Times) on conservation of the Giant Catfish, Pangasianodon gigas, in Tonle Sap, Cambodia and Mekong River. Features research of Zeb Hogan (UC Davis). Complete article may only be available via on-line purchase.

Posted Tuesday, 1 October 2002
Reeling in more than a new species
A Mexican catfish represents a new family, and "that's very unusual these days."
Article by Faye Flam (staff writer, The Philadelphia Inquirer) on the discovery of the "Chiapas Catfish". Features quotes from John Lundberg (ANSP) & Richard Vari (USNM) and the collaborative research of
Rocío Rodiles Hernández (Colegio de la Frontera Sur, Chiapas, México), Dean Hendrickson (TNHC) and John Lundberg.

Posted May 2002
Catfish Hunters
Synopsis of article by Fen Montaigne with photographs by Randy Olson for National Geographic Magazine (May issue). Article covers 1998 Expedition to Guyana led by Lawrence M. Page (then with Illinois Natural History Survey) with Jon Armbruster (Auburn University) and Page's students, Mike Hardman, Jason Knouft and Mark Sabaj. The expedition retraced the 1908 route of Carl H. Eigenmann to the upper Potaro River above Kaieteur Falls. The collections resulted in the discovery of a new species loricariid, Corymbophanes kaiei Armbruster & Sabaj (in Armbruster, et al. 2000), and a comparative study of the two fish surveys (Hardman, et al. 2002).

Posted Wednesday, 17 April 2002
Future of giant catfish may be under threat

US expert urges thorough study
Article by Anchalee Kongrut (Bangkok Post) features research of Zeb Hogan (UC Davis) et al. on migratory behaviors of the Giant Catfish, Pangasianodon gigas. Includes comments on Pak Moon dam's impact on the catfish population in the Mekong River basin.