Actinopteri (ray-finned fishes) > Siluriformes
(Catfishes) > Clariidae
Etymology: Heterobranchus: Greek, heteros = other + Greek, brangchia = gill (Ref. 45335).
More on author: Bleeker.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Freshwater; demersal; potamodromous (Ref. 51243). Tropical; 22°C - 28°C (Ref. 12468); 17°N - 4°N
Africa: coastal basins from the Konkouré (Guinea) to the Cross (Cameroon); present in the upper Senegal, but apparently absent from the Gambia and the Niger (Ref. 57129).
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 123 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 123661); max. published weight: 1.2 kg (Ref. 123661)
Morphology | Morphometrics
soft rays: 40 - 51;
Vertebrae: 53 - 60. Diagnosis: length of rayed dorsal fin 27-36% standard length; 26-35 dorsal-fin rays; length of adipose fin 24-34% of standard length (Ref. 57129). Strong, downward-pointed serrations on the anterior part of the pectoral spine (Ref. 270, 57129). Width of vomerine tooth plate 20.8-25.0%, width of premaxillary tooth plate 25.2-30.9% of head length; adipose fin uniformly coloured (Ref. 57129). Eyes superolateral; frontal fontanelle long and narrow; occipital fontanelle oval-shaped; head completely covered with bones; suprabranchial organ well developed; tooth plates relatively narrow; openings of secondary sensory canals regularly placed (Ref. 270).
Coloration: preserved specimens: grey, greyish-brown to dark brown on back and sides, pale brown on belly; some individuals show a marbled colour pattern; caudal and adipose fins uniformly coloured (Ref. 57129).
Facultative air-breathing (Ref. 126274); Max. size in West Africa reported as 510 mm TL (Ref. 57129).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Teugels, G.G., B. Denayer and M. Legendre, 1990. A systematic revision of the African catfish genus Heterobranchus Geoffroy-Saint-Hilaire, 1809 (Pisces: Clariidae). Zool. J. Linn. Soc. 98:237-257. (Ref. 270)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 125652)
Threat to humans
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningSpawning aggregationFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingNutrientsMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82804
= 0.5625 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00891 (0.00512 - 0.01553), b=2.90 (2.75 - 3.05), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 3.7 ±0.6 se; based on size and trophs of closest relatives
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Very Low, minimum population doubling time more than 14 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Fishing Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Very high vulnerability (90 of 100).