L239 Baryancistrus beggini

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Retired Staff
Apr 8, 2009
All assigned numbers: L239

Name: Baryancistrus beggini

Common Names: blue panaque, L239

Location: South America: upper Rio Orinoco, Amazonas, Venezuela.



Suitable for aquariums, but can be very aggressive against other armor catfish, other Finnish Blue in particular. This species is fairly territorial namely: finding and retaining caves, suitable for building a nest, is usually the stumbling block. More than a Blue Fin 'Panaque "in a small tank could result in injury or death of one or more fish, although in a large tank with many decorations they could reside together.
The minimum tank size for a single fish is 80x30x30cm. For a group of 3-4 fish a well decorated aquarium 100x40x40cm is required.

Sexing and Breeding:

Given the large suckermouth, filled with many very small teeth, this species is a "Aufwuchs" eater. Aufwuchs is the organic layer, part plant, partly consisting of small organisms (scale insects, freshwater sponges, small insects, insect eggs and larvae, and plankton), which forms on submerged surfaces, and which by this catfish is grazed.
Once acclimatized, the Blue Fin 'Panaque' will in most cases eat both meat food (shrimp, krill, mussels, mosquito larvae, blood worms) and vegetable food (blanched vegetables, tablets, algae, and, to the dismay of many aquarists, also aquarium plants) feeding.

Water parameters:
Temp 25-30c PH 5.5-7.5
This strikingly colored catfish prefers a tank with many hiding places dimmed, in the form of plants, drift wood, rocks and / or artificial caves. For multiple Blue Panaques, or those mixed with other bottom dwellers, an aquarium of 120x50cm is required, since the species can be territorial with a lack of suitable shelters or overcrowded. The Blue Fin Panaque can behave aggressively towards other bottom dwellers. If the only occupant in the bottom tank is a tank of 100x40cm. Juveniles can easily be temporarily kept in smaller aquariums, as long as there are enough shelters.
This species is the best in soft, slightly acidic to neutral water, rich with oxygen and strong current. A strong filter is important, as these fish are can produce a lot of waste.

Max Size:

Bred by:

Breeding Log:
See post below. For questions and comments please use original thread here Breeding L239 Baryancistrus beggini

Additional Comments:
The Blue Fin 'Panaque' is known as a difficult to acclimatize catfish: many of these fish are found dead during the first months due to stress and malnutrition.
Another problem for newly imported specimens, the degradation of the bacterial intestinal flora, which is affected by disrupted transportation (due to digestive problems and a significantly reduced uptake of, especially during the first weeks, extremely important nutrients). Commercially available fish must have a minimum number of weeks in quarantine at the importer / dealer for reasonable survival guarantee. Fish with sunken eyes and abdomen will usually die within a few weeks. Therefore save you a lot of frustration, observe the fish before purchase to avoid disappointment.
Once home it is strongly recommended the fish again for several weeks in a quarantine aquarium to keep the animal quiet to get used to life in prison and the local water values. Also during this period he should be observed feeding - depending on the offered food - red to dark-colored thin wisps solid stool should be found, indicating that he is eating well. In addition, if certain foods are what will and will not be accepted. Once eating well, active and alert, and looks healthy (good color, bulging belly, slightly bulging, bright eyes), he may be moved to a bigger aquarium.

Despite its misleading trade name, the Blue Fin 'Panaque is not part of the genus Panaque - it has little or nothing in common with these large, wood-eating catfishes. The question to which this species or genus belongs was done in 2009, when ichthyologist Lujan, Arce & Armbruster this species scientifically described as Baryancistrus beggini. But the last word seems not talked about yet, since not everyone seems convinced that the Blue Fin 'Panaque' actually belongs to that family.

Profile information used with permission from www.piranha-Info.com


Aug 7, 2010
New Zealand
Breeding L239 Baryancistrus beggini
The breeding of any "fancy pleco" is not quite the same as breeding the common Ancistrus, and while the breeders of fancy plecos may be able to list the water parameters that they have been monitoring, the real question remains "is that all the information that is required?"
I know of people in Europe that successfully breed all their fish on the phase of the moon.
Others wait for atmospheric pressure changes.
So this account of breeding whilst not scientific by any means will hopefully be able to assist others with breeding in general.

With the internet, and the less closely guarded secrets about breeding fancy plecos, the first place to start in any breeding project is research.

Where do the fish come from?
What type of water is in that location?
What are the basic parameters of that water?
Do the parameters of the water change at different seasons?

After that, in no particular order:
Sexing your fish. (It helps to have both males and females)
Observe your fish. (It is unlikely that a breeding project will be a short term exercise)
Conditioning your fish.
Spawning your fish.

In addition to all this you may have a personal philosophy about fish keeping.
Mine is simple.......
As a fish keeper it is my responsibility to create an environment which enables my fish to thrive and be healthy.

On to the Blue Fin Panaque......

I purchased a couple of these fish, primarily as show fish for my community tank. How cool is it to have a blue fish!
There were some other fancy plecs in the tank so everything should be all right.
The tank is in a place where I could observe them every day, and they seemed to be like plecs, nowhere to be seen during the day, and out and about a bit at night, but generally very shy.
They never seemed to have any aggression with any of the other fish.
They seemed to have more interest in the rocks than the wood, which was odd for a "panaque" (if only in name)
One day I noticed that the female seemed to be rather large.... Gravid perhaps I thought, so time to do a bit more research.

After some more research I found that these fish had been reclassified as Baryancistrus. Interesting I thought, this could be why they seem to prefer the rocks?

Perhaps I can breed them? If the female is indeed gravid then I must be close to getting them to spawn.

So off to their own tank they went, and another specimen was added.
The new tank was 90% rocks and about 10% wood.

That move was a lesson in how to make a "happy" fish "unhappy"!

And with that another tank was born.

This one 100cm x 60cm x 45cm
pH = 6.5
NO2 = 0
NO3 = 5-10
Ammonia = 0
Temp = 29C-30C

It was about 80% rock and 20% wood.
Filtration = Fluval 305
Circulation = Tunzee 6025
Regular maintenance was a 20% water change weekly.
The fish seemed to spend most of their time on the wood, so over the next few months I added more wood, and removed rocks, until the total was about 80% wood, and 20% rock.

They also do not seem fond of light, so I placed cardboard on top of the tank to reduce the light by about 60%
An interesting observation now is that the "happier" the fish seem to be the bluer the edge of the dorsal and tail fin get!

Towards the end of January I noticed that there were a lot of blue fins, and one of the females looked rather gravid!

The next water change would "be the one" I thought. I did a couple of things differently.
I moved the power head so that it now went diagonally across the tank and across the face of the alpha cave.
I took out 25% of the water but only added 20% back in, so the filter outlet was at the same level of the water.
The temp came down by a couple of degrees, the TDS was 103 and the pH had crept down to 5.7

The next night there was a female in the cave and a week later there was a batch of eggs with tails in the tank.

They continued to spawn every 28 days or so from February to June, but never managed to keep any eggs in the cave to the point of hatching!
Each spawn was about 10-15 eggs, and there are about 30-40 surviving babies.

The babies take about 7 days to hatch at 28.5C, and once I was lucky enough to see the head and tail emerge from the egg, which only took a matter of seconds.
It takes another7 days for them to consume their yolk sac. About 14 days after that they will eat the same food as the parents.
The fry get to about 3cm (TL) after about 3 months and then the growth rate slows down. After 7 months they are only about 4 cm.



Aug 7, 2010
New Zealand
Pictures - Tank
The redish one is without a flash, and the other one is with a flash. This tank is one of the two that it is really hard to get a shot of......
The cave is in the bottom right of the tank and is an Easter Island Head resin ornament.
The other possible breeding location is a natural caved in the lump of wool "behind" the cave.

Well they are a bit hard to take a picture of, as I don't really like to catch them out, so the first one is the alpha male when he was in the community tank, and the second picture is the same fish, I think, but he is showing me what he thinks of the camera <3


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