Aspredo aspredo

Common Name

Common Banjo Catfish

Year Described

Linnaeus, 1758


Dorsal Fin: 5
Anal Fin: 50-60 rays
Caudal Fin: 10 principal rays
Pectoral Fin: 7

Body distinctively banjo-shaped with the body flattened and wide anterior to anal fin origin, and posterior part of body thin and laterally compressed. Head armored. Gill opening on underside of head. Thick part of body at least a third of standard length. Snout squared off with a relatively broad mouth. Maxillary barbels moderate; almost reach pectoral fins. A small accessory barbel at base of maxillary barbel. Barbels have a fleshy flap connecting to head. Only two pairs of mental and postmental barbels. Dorsal fin high with a short base and weak spine. Anal fin very long based. Pectoral fins large with strong spines and coarse serrations. Pelvic fin rounded. Adipose fin absent. Caudal fin small. Body naked. Reduced body tubercles.


Body plain flesh-colored to chocolate brown with a whitish belly. Edges of body and ridges often pale. Fins very dark to black. Eggs orange.


Maximum size to 38cm SL.


Inhabits the lower reaches of rivers and into estuaries. Found over soft bottoms in turbid waters.


Venezuela and Brazil (Orinoco and Amazon basins).


Carpenter, K.E., & De Angelis, N. (Eds.). 2002. The living marine resources of the Western Central Atlantic (Vol. 2, pp. 602-1373). Rome, Italy: Food and agriculture organization of the United Nations.

van der Sleen, P., & Albert, J.S. (Eds.). 2017. Field guide to the fishes of the Amazon, Orinoco, and Guianas (Vol. 115). Princeton University Press.