Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish is a species of catfish of the family Clariidae, the airbreathing catfishes belong to African lakes and rivers.
Clarias gariepinus is discovered all through Africa and the Center East, and reside in freshwater lakes, rivers, and swamps, in addition to human-made habitats, akin to oxidation ponds, and even city sewage techniques.
North African catfish have been broadly launched all over the world. They’re discovered as far south as South Africa and north into northern Africa.
They’ve additionally been launched in Europe, the Center East, and in components of Asia. They’re potamodromous, which implies they migrate inside streams and rivers
The African sharptooth catfish, Clarias gariepinus was launched everywhere in the world within the early 1980s for aquaculture functions, so it is present in international locations far exterior its pure habitat, akin to Brazil, Vietnam, Indonesia, and India.
The Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish is a big, eel-like fish, normally of darkish grey or black coloration on the again, fading to a white stomach.
In Africa, this Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish has been reported as being second in measurement solely to the vundu of the Zambian waters, though FishBase suggests the African sharptooth catfish surpasses that species in each most size and weight.
C. gariepinus has a median grownup size of 1–1.5 m (three ft three in–four ft 11 in).
Clarias gariepinus or African sharp tooth catfish reaches the most size of 1.7 m (5 ft 7 in) TL and may weigh as much as 60 kg (130 lb). These fish have slender bodies, flat bony heads, notably flatter than within the genus Silurus, and broad, terminal mouths with 4 pairs of barbels.
Additionally, they have massive accent respiration organs composed of modified gill arches. Additionally, solely the pectoral fins have spines.
Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish Habits
It’s a nocturnal fish like many catfish. It feeds on residing, in addition to lifeless, animal matter.
Due to its huge mouth, it is ready to swallow comparatively massive prey entire. It has been recognized to take massive waterbirds such because of the frequent moorhen.
Additionally, it is in a position to crawl on the dry floor to flee drying swimming pools. Additional, it is ready to survive in shallow mud for lengthy intervals of time, between wet seasons.
Spawning largely takes place at night time within the shallow, inundated areas of the rivers lakes and streams. Courtship is preceded by extremely aggressive encounters between males.
Courtship and mating take place in shallow waters between remoted pairs of women and men. The male lies in a U-shape curved across the head of the feminine, held for a number of seconds.
A batch of milt and eggs is launched adopted by a vigorous swish of the feminine’s tail to distribute the eggs over a large space.
The pair normally rests after mating (from seconds as much as a number of minutes) after which resume mating.
Parental look after making certain the survival of the catfish offspring is absent besides by the cautious selection of an acceptable web site.
Improvement of eggs and larvae is speedy, and the larvae are able to swim inside 48–72 hours after fertilization.
Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish Habitat
North African catfish reside in a wide range of freshwater environments, together with quiet waters like lakes, ponds, and swimming pools.
Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish are additionally very outstanding inflowing rivers, rapids, and round dams. They’re very adaptive to excessive environmental situations and may reside in pH vary of 6.5-8.0.
Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish are able to reside in very turbid waters and may tolerate temperatures of 8-35 levels Celsius. Their optimum temperature for development is 28-30 levels Celsius.
Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish are backside dwellers and do most of their feeding there. They’re additionally obligate air breathers, which implies they do spend a while on the floor.
This species can reside in very poorly oxygenated waters and is, without doubt, one of the final species to reside in such an uninhabitable place.
They’re additionally in a position to secrete mucus to stop drying and are ready to burrow within the muddy substrate of a drying physique of water.
North African catfish are omnivores. They don’t seem to be particular of their meals necessities. Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish are recognized to feed on bugs, plankton, snails, crabs, shrimp, and different invertebrates.
They’re additionally able to consume lifeless animals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, small mammals, different fishes, eggs, and plant matter akin to fruit and seeds. As a result, of they’re cellular on land, they can prey on terrestrial organisms.
This species might also hunt in packs every now and then by herding and trapping smaller fish. They’re additionally referred to as Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish due to high quality, pointed bands of enamel.
North African catfish are an essential participant in sure ecosystems. In Thailand, they’ve been launched as a farm fish.
Nevertheless, in these marshes and swamps the place they’re raised, there’s a native catfish, strolling catfish, that’s nearing extinction. That is because of the inhabitant’s enlargement of the North African catfish.
Additionally, it is because of the back-crossing of the strolling catfish and the hybrid of the 2 species. That is additionally decreasing the genetic variation of the native strolling catfish.
Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish can be essential in nutrient recycling in conjunction with rice fields. The switch of nutrients takes place from the pond to the rice by way of fish feces, which will increase rice yields
The rearing of the Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish in Africa began within the early 1970s in Central and Western Africa, because it was realized to be a really appropriate species for aquaculture, as:
It grows quick and feeds on a big number of agriculture byproducts
It’s hardy and tolerates opposed water high-quality situations
It may be raised in excessive densities, leading to excessive internet yields (6–16 t/ha/12 months).
In most international locations, it fetches the next worth than tilapia, as it may be bought reside on the market
It matures and comparatively simply reproduces in captivity
It tolerates troublesome situations in aquaculture
Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish Improvement
North African catfish lay their eggs in vegetation. The eggs hatch inside 25-40 hours. The larvae are in a position to swim and are in a position to feed inside 2 or three days.
Development may be very speedy, with males reaching an, in the end, bigger measurement than females
Communication and Notion
It isn’t recognized whether or not this species specifically makes use of its pectoral backbone to make sounds, however, in different species of catfish, this is quite common conduct.
This species has additionally been know to generate electric organ discharges, however, it isn’t recognized if this conduct is communicative
Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish Reproduction
This species participates in mass spawning.
Mating System polygynandrous (promiscuous)
This species is recognized to breed within the summers after the wet season. Huge numbers migrate to “flooded shallow grassy verges of rivers and lakes” (Skelton 1993). The eggs are laid within the vegetation.
Clarias gariepinus may very well be simply crossed with Heterobranchus longifillis to get the so-called hybrid Hetero-clarias. This cross has benefits over the Clarias gariepinus:
fish can not reproduce itself (so it will not spend vitality on replica)
fish has chicken (may very well be most well-liked by buyer)
A drawback of the Hetero-clarias hybrid:
Parasites and illnesses
Clarias gariepinus might host a number of species of digeneans, along with different endo- and ectoparasites.
Clarias gariepinus or African sharptooth catfish Habits
North African catfish are comparatively poor swimmers that spend more often than not on the underside of lakes and rivers.
They’re, nonetheless, in a position to transfer throughout the land to different water supply throughout damp situations.
They merely lengthen their robust pectoral fins and spines and start crawling by way of shallow pathways.
This species has been recognized, throughout intra-specific aggressive interactions, to emit an electrical organ discharge that was head-positive and lasting 5-260 milliseconds