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Kwi Kwi (Hoplosternum littorale)

The Kwi Kwi or Hoplosternum littorale is a species of Armoured Catfish from the Callichthyidae family. This fish features an armor-plated body that protects itself from potential predators. These freshwater fish go by several different names throughout the world including, Tamuatá, Atipa, Hassar, Cascadu, Busco and Currito.

This species of catfish can grow to about 9-1/2" (24cm) in length, with the males tending to be a bit larger then the females. Originally found in South America, this fish has been spotted in Florida and is also becoming more and more popular in an aquarium setting. Believe it or not, this fish can breathe both with gills and through its intestines and is a very lively, entertaining fish! They can grow to about 4 years old and are nocturnal feeders, munching on crustaceans, larvae and aquatic insects.

 Kwi Kwi reproduce after the first year, with spawning normally being triggered by the first rains and occurs in the warm and rainy season. Like other callichthyine, this fish builds a bubble nest. This species is said to have one of the most complex nest structure. This bubble nest is designs to be rich with oxygen which helps the eggs develop even in poor water conditions. It also provides protection from potential predators. You can check out a Kwi Kwi building a bubble nest in the video below.

If you have any additional information about the Kwi Kwi please leave us a comment below.


Anonymous said...

Have a bunch in my pond. They eat worms . Are they good eating?.

1Green Thumb said...

I haven't tried them... Not sure if they are edible or not :)

Unknown said...

Actually yes, they are edible, I live in Peru, In an Amazonian region called Ucayali(Ucayali river with the Marañon river forms the Amazon), their name over here is SHIRUI and is very common eat them. Sorry if my english is not so good.

Unknown said...

In suriname they catch these fish and curry or Masala them... very common fish to eat in South America

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