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Galeichthys

Galeichthys is a genus of catfishes (order Siluriformes) of the family Ariidae. The only genus in the subfamily Galeichthyinae, this genus includes three species, G. ater, G. feliceps, and G. peruvianus, and an undescribed species from South Africa.

Distribution

Galeichthys species are predominantly marine species distributed in Southern Africa and northwestern South America. G. ater is known from the Cape of Good Hope of southern Africa. G. feliceps is widely distributed in southern Africa, found in freshwater, estuarine, and coastal environments. G. peruvianus is found on the Pacific coast of South America, from Ecuador to Peru.

Description

These fish have three pairs of barbels: a pair of fleshy and cylindrical maxillary barbels and two pairs of mental barbels. The base of the adipose fin is as long as the base of the anal fin. G. peruvianus reaches about 35.0 centimetres TL, G. ater about 45.0 cm TL, and G. feliceps about 55.0 cm TL. G. ater is dark brown to blackish, slightly lighter ventrally with the whole undersurface covered with brown specks. G. feliceps is brown to greyish or greenish brown dorsally and whitish on its sides and ventrally; the midline of the abdomen is whitish and never pigmented.

Ecology

G. feliceps is generally found in large shoals on the muddy bottoms in turbid waters, usually on the coastline and estuaries, though it is also found in rivers. G. peruvianus is found in coastal waters. G. ater is carnivorous, feeding on benthic invertebrates, primarily annelids. G. feliceps feeds on crayfish, small fish, and crabs.

G. feliceps is considered a nuisance of shore and ski-boat anglers in southern Africa as little else is caught. Its spines are venomous and wounds should be treated immediately. G. feliceps is marketed smoked. G. peruvianus is marketed fresh and also reduced to fish meal.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Galeichthys


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