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Featherfin catfish - Synodontis eupterus

Featherfin catfish - Synodontis eupterus

Scientific name: Synodontis eupterus

Common name: Featherfin catfish

Family: Mochokidae

Usual size in fish tanks: 18 - 22 cm (7.09 - 8.66 inch)


Recommended pH range for the species: 6 - 7.5

Recommended water hardness (dGH): 12 - 16°N (214.29 - 285.71ppm)

0°C 32°F30°C 86°F

Recommended temperature: 22 - 26 °C (71.6 - 78.8°F)

The way how these fish reproduce: Spawning

Where the species comes from: Africa

Temperament to its own species: peaceful

Temperament toward other fish species: peaceful

Usual place in the tank: Bottom levels


The Featherfin catfish originates from the African continent, namely Nigeria, Sudan, Chad and Ghana, it is found on the rivers and waterways.


Expected life span is 18 years.

General information

Although the feather fin catfish may look appealing to all aquarists, it should be known that only experienced keepers should house these fish as they can be problematic with long term care and require the best of conditions and care. In the wild they do inhabit a variety of natural conditions so this should make them ideal for any aquarium but it is crucial that the water quality is kept as high as possible. Like all bottom dweller fish, they do require their own space and overcrowding with these fish can cause serious territorial behaviour. Hiding places should be provided in the aquarium by adding rocks or driftwood and the lighting should be dimmed, adding floating plants to the aquarium will help with this. The Featherfin Catfish should never be housed with small species of tank mates, these will be seen as food so only keep them with fish of a similar or larger size.

They have earned the nickname of “squeakers“ because of the audible noise that they are capable of producing.

Food and feeding

Featherfin catfish will accept quality flakes, sinking pellets and algae wafers. Try to include foods that contain spirulina and give an occasional treat of blood worms.

The Featherfin Catfish can be very timid when first introduced into the aquarium but over time they will settle down and even come out for meals in the daylight hours.


Mature females tend to be plumper than mature males, experienced keepers can sex the fish by turning individuals over and examining the genital area but this method is reserved for keepers that are advanced.


Synodontis eupterus are egg layers but as of this dater there are no reported cases of them breeding in the aquarium.

Short description

Synodontis eupterus can be difficult to care for. It is very territorial but will tolerate larger tank mates, the larger African cichlids are ideal. They need hiding places in the tank, these can be provided with rocks and wood, they are also perfectly safe with live plants.


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Featherfin catfish, picture 1 Featherfin catfish, picture 2 Featherfin catfish, picture 3 Featherfin catfish, picture 4 Featherfin catfish, picture 5 Featherfin catfish, picture 6 Featherfin catfish, picture 7

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