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Ranger Rick’s Backyard Safari is bringing together kids, nature and fun. Come with a sense of adventure. Leave inspired to care for the wildlife in your own backyard!

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Animal Keeper

Animal Keeper Updates

Get a peek behind the scenes of the Aquarium’s Husbandry department. Read their weekly animal updates and get an insider’s look at caring for over 10,000 animals and plants.

ANIMAL UPDATES
FISHES

Redtail Catfish

Phractocephalus hemioliopterus

ON EXHIBIT: River Giants exhibit in River Journey

Redtail catfish

FUN FACTS
The Redtail Catfish is a pimelodid (long-whiskered) catfish named for its red or orange caudal fin. The barbels along their snout are extremely sensitive and loaded with chemical reception cells, acting as another sense of smell for the fish. Due to their large size, the indigenous people in South America utilize these fish as a food source. They have been introduced into Florida, but have not established a sustainable population. 

CONSERVATION
They are considered non-threatened. The species is an important component of the Amazonian fishery. 


Redtail catfish

About This Animal

SIZE: They can grow over 4 feet in the wild.

RANGE: The redtail catfish is native to the Amazon, Orinoco, and Essequibo river basins of South America. 

HABITAT: These freshwater fish can be found in rivers, streams, lakes, and ponds throughout the Amazon and Orinoco River Basins in South America. 

DIET: Quite an opportunistic feeder in nature, feeding on fish, invertebrates and fallen fruits. It is a slow-moving, bottom-dwelling fish that is thought to attack prey by probing and ambush.


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