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Black Banded Cat Shark (Chiloscyllium punctatum)


The Black Banded Cat Shark or Chiloscyllium punctatum is an aquarium fish that should be only housed in a very large aquarium of at least 180 gallons. These Cat Sharks can grow to about 3' 6" in maximum length and are considered to be an aggressive salt water fish. The Black Banded Cat Shark gets its name from the barbels around its mouth that look just like cat swiskers. Also known as the Brownbanded Bamboo Shark, it has a long stripped body and originates from the indo-pacific area. As this Shark gets older, the stripes will fade on its body. You can check out a rather young Black Banded Cat Shark underwater in this video below...

In an aquarium and in the wild around coral reefs you will normally find this shark close to the bottom where it feeds on crustaceans scampering across the sea floor. If you house this fish in an aquarium be sure to provide it with a sandy bottom so it doesn't hurt this tender bottomed fish. Another thing to note is that is shouldn't ever be exposed to copper-based medicine as this can harm or even kill this species of Cat Shark.
One of the biggest problems with the Black Banded Cat Shark is getting it to eat in the very beginning. If you provide it with live saltwater feeder shrimp or squid this should encourage this beautiful fish to eat. After that you can feed it scallops, pieces of fish and squid, mussels are said to work well too.

A couple interesting facts about the Black Banded Cat Shark is that is can actually survive outside of water for up to 12 hours and it is an egg layer that can take up to four months to hatch! While the Black Banded Cat Shark is not the easiest to care for it is quite fun to watch grow, and a great addition to any large saltwater aquarium.

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