v. 13.0 – 8 Oct. 2017  view/download PDF

Family ASPREDINIDAE Banjo Catfishes
13 genera · 46 species

Acanthobunocephalus Friel 1995    acantho-, spiny, referring to rigid, locking dorsal spine, i.e., a spiny Bunocephalus

Acanthobunocephalus nicoi Friel 1995    in honor of Leo G. Nico, Research Biologist, U.S. Geological Survey, who collected type

Amaralia Fowler 1954    -ia, belonging to: herpetologist (and anti-venom serum expert) Afrânio do Amaral (1894-1982), in honor of his work in Brazilian natural history

Amaralia hypsiura (Kner 1855)    hypselos, high or tall; oura, tail, referring to thick (or high) caudal peduncle

Amaralia oviraptor Friel & Carvalho 2016    ovum, egg; raptor, robber or plunderer, often used as a term for predator, referring to apparent dietary specialization of Amaralia on eggs and developing embryos of other catfishes

Aspredinichthys Bleeker 1858    Aspredo, referring to previous placement of A. tibicen in that genus; ichthys, fish

Aspredinichthys filamentosus (Valenciennes 1840)    with filaments, referring to elongate first ray of dorsal fin

Aspredinichthys tibicen (Valenciennes 1840)    latinization of trompetter, or trompetfisi (trumpeter), Dutch-Surinamese local name for this and other aspredinid catfishes, alluding to the sound they make when taken out of the water (Isaäc J.H. Isbrücker, pers. comm.)

Aspredo Scopoli 1777    presumably tautonymous with Silurus aspredo (Scopoli [ex Gronow] did not indicate species)

Aspredo aspredo (Linnaeus 1758)    roughness, presumably referring to tuberculate skin

Bunocephalus Kner 1855    buno-, mound or knob; cephalus, head, referring to rounded cusps or bumps on head

Bunocephalus aleuropsis Cope 1870    etymology not explained, perhaps a-, not, leuros, smooth and –opsis, appearance, referring to five series of “wartlets” each side of tail (another interpretation: aleuron, flour and –opsis, appearance, referring to “head densely punctulated with white”)

Bunocephalus aloikae Hoedeman 1961    of Aloiké village, French Guiana, type locality

Bunocephalus amaurus Eigenmann 1912    dark, referring to dark chocolate coloration

Bunocephalus chamaizelus Eigenmann 1912    etymology not explained, perhaps derived from chamai, dwarf, referring to small size of Eigenmann’s specimens (22-44 mm)

Bunocephalus colombianus Eigenmann 1912    Colombian, referring to country where it is endemic

Bunocephalus coracoideus (Cope 1874)    etymology not explained, presumably adjectival form of coracoid, referring to longer postcorcoids compared to Benocephalus melas (=B. aleuropsis)

Bunocephalus doriae Boulenger 1930    in honor of herpetologist Giacomo Doria (1840-1913), “eminent Director of the Genoa Civic Museum”

Bunocephalus erondinae Cardoso 2010    in memory of the author’s mother, Erondina Rodrigues Cardoso

Bunocephalus hartti Carvalho, Cardoso, Friel & Reis 2015    in honor of Charles Frederick Hartt (1840-1878), geologist, paleontologist and naturalist; his notable accomplishments include the publication of “Geology and physical geography of Brazil” (1870), and serving as founder and director of the section of geology at the Museu Nacional of Brazil from 1866 to 1867

Bunocephalus knerii Steindachner 1882    patronym not identified but clearly in honor of ichthyologist Rudolf Kner (1810-1869), who was Steindachner’s teacher and friend

Bunocephalus larai Ihering 1930    in honor of Rodolpho Lara Campos, sponsor of expedition that collected type

Bunocephalus minerim Carvalho, Cardoso, Friel & Reis 2015    typically regional manner of pronouncing the Portuguese word mineirinho, diminutive of mineiro, a person from Minas Gerais, Brazil, referring to region where this species is found and to its relative small size compared to congeners

Bunocephalus verrucosus (Walbaum 1792)    covered with verrucae, or warts, referring to warty tubercles on body

Dupouyichthys Schultz 1944    in honor of Schultz’ friend Walter Dupouy (1906-1978), director of the Museo de Ciencias Naturales (Caracas, Venezuela); ichthys, fish

Dupouyichthys sapito Schultz 1944    common name of this catfish in the Maracaibo Basin, Venezuela

Ernstichthys Fernández-Yépez 1953    in honor of biologist Adolfo (also spelled Adolf) Ernst (1832-1899), Chair of Natural Science at the Central University of Venezuela; ichthys, fish

Ernstichthys anduzei Fernández-Yépez 1953    in honor of the “tireless researcher” (translation) Venezuelan entomologist Pablo J. Anduze (1902-1989)

Ernstichthys intonsus Stewart 1985    unshaved or bearded, referring to “extreme proliferation of barbels”

Ernstichthys megistus (Orcés V. 1961)    largest, referring to its large size (up to 67 mm SL) compared to Dupouyichthys sapito and Hoplomyzon atrizona, its presumed congeners at the time

Hoplomyzon Myers 1942    hoplo-, armed, referring to body “armed with six longitudinal series of bony bucklers”; myzon, to suck, presumably referring to resemblance to Asian (Exostoma) and neotropical (Astroblepus) catfishes (as noted by Myers) that have sucker mouths (a resemblance mainly due to adnate maxillary barbels in Hoplomyzon [John Friel, pers. comm])

Hoplomyzon atrizona Myers 1942    ater, black; zona, band, referring to three black crossbands on body, “very bold and striking”

Hoplomyzon cardosoi Carvalho, Reis & Friel 2017    in honor and memory of Alexandre Rodrigues Cardoso, a “dear colleague who prematurely passed away … for his humbleness, positive attitude, and dedicated friendship,” and for his contributions to the taxonomy of neotropical fishes, including the family Aspredinidae

Hoplomyzon papillatus Stewart 1985    with buds, referring to numerous short, papillae-like mental barbels

Hoplomyzon sexpapilostoma Taphorn & Marrero 1990    sex, six; papilla, tubercle; stoma, mouth, referring to six buccal papillae (four on upper lip, one at each corner of mouth)

Micromyzon Friel & Lundberg 1996    micro-, small, referring to its size, <16 mm SL; myzon, sucker, used here because it is the suffix of the name Hoplomyzon, type genus of tribe Hoplomyzontini

Micromyzon akamai Friel & Lundberg 1996    in honor of ichthyologist Alberto Akama, for his “enthusiastic help” in collecting the type series

Micromyzon orinoco Carvalho, Lundberg, Baskin, Friel & Reis 2016    named for its distribution in the lower Río Orinoco, Venezuela

Platystacus Bloch 1794    platys, flat, referring to short and flat body; acus, needle, referring to long and compressed tail

Platystacus cotylephorus Bloch 1794    cotyla, cup or cavity; phorus, to bear, referring to cup-like hollows (now called cotylephores) on abdomen (to which developing embryos are attached, a fact not known at the time)

Pseudobunocephalus Friel 2008    pseudo-, false or deceptive, referring to fact that members of this genus have previously been mistaken for juveniles of various species of Bunocephalus

Pseudobunocephalus amazonicus (Mees 1989)    icus, belonging to: Amazon River, referring to distribution in the middle Amazon basin (including Rio Madeira) of Bolivia and Brazil

Pseudobunocephalus bifidus (Eigenmann 1942)    forked, referring to bifid postmental barbels

Pseudobunocephalus iheringii (Boulenger 1891)    in honor of German-Brazilian zoologist Hermann von Ihering (1850-1930), who helped collect type

Pseudobunocephalus lundbergi Friel 2008    in honor of John G. Lundberg, Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, Friel’s Ph.D. advisor, for numerous contributions to neotropical ichthyology and the systematics of siluriform and gymnotiform fishes

Pseudobunocephalus quadriradiatus (Mees 1989)    quadri-, four; radiatus, rayed, referring to four-rayed pectoral fin rather than the usual five

Pseudobunocephalus rugosus (Eigenmann & Kennedy 1903)    rugose or wrinkled, referring to “very conspicuous” warts all over the skin

Pterobunocephalus Fowler 1943    pterus, referring to large anal fin of Bunocephalus (subgenus Pterobunocephalus) albifasciatus (=P. depressus)

Pterobunocephalus depressus (Haseman 1911)    referring to its “greatly depressed” body

Pterobunocephalus dolichurus (Delsman 1941)    dolichos, long; urus, tail, referring to its “very long” tail relative to others then classified in the short-tailed subfamily Bunocephalinae

Xyliphius Eigenmann 1912    wooden or wood-like, allusion not explained, probably referring to cryptic coloration of X. magdalenae, which can be said to resemble a small piece of wood

Xyliphius anachoretes Figueiredo & Britto 2010    Greek for hermit or recluse, referring to rarity of the two known specimens, each one found alone and far apart

Xyliphius barbatus Alonso de Arámburu & Arámburu 1962    bearded, referring to 30 dendritic papillae on lower lip

Xyliphius kryptos Taphorn & Lilyestrom 1983    hidden, referring to its difficult-to-sample habitat, at the “bottom of turbulent rivers with strong currents, in total darkness” (translation)

Xyliphius lepturus Orcés V. 1962    leptos, thin; oura, tail, referring to comparatively slender caudal peduncle, its depth about 1/20 of SL

Xyliphius lombarderoi Risso & Risso 1964    in honor of parasitologist Oscar J. Lombardero, Dean of Faculty, Universidad del Nordeste (Argentina), for his accomplishments in the teaching of zoology

Xyliphius magdalenae Eigenmann 1912    of the Magdalena River basin, Colombia, where it is endemic

Xyliphius melanopterus Orcés V. 1962    melanos, black; pterus, fin, referring to its predominantly black fins

Xyliphius sofiae Carvalho, Reis & Sabaj 2017    in honor of the first author’s daughter, Sofia, “for inspiring wisdom in her father”

Family DORADIDAE Thorny Catfishes
32 genera · 95 species


Kalyptodoras Higuchi, Britski & Garavello 1990    kalyptos, covered, referring to embedded condition of most lateral scutes; Doras, type genus of family

Kalyptodoras bahiensis Higuchi, Britski & Garavello 1990    ensis, suffix denoting place: Bahia State, Brazil, where it is known only from the Rio Paraguaçu

Wertheimeria Steindachner 1877    ia, belonging to: Mr. Wertheimer, who collected type, either Louis Wertheimer of the Thayer Expedition to Brazil, or Achilles Wertheimer, who died on the expedition due to a snakebite (see Pogonopoma wertheimeri, Loricariidae)

Wertheimeria maculata Steindachner 1877    spotted, referring to large, oval, blue-gray spots on upper body, top of head, and pectoral and dorsal fins


Amblydoras Bleeker 1862    amblys, blunt, referring to smooth (non-serrated) dorsal-fin spine; Doras, type genus of family

Amblydoras affinis (Kner 1855)    related, referring to close similarity to Doras dentatus (=Platydoras costatus), its presumed congener at the time

Amblydoras bolivarensis (Fernández-Yépez 1968)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Estado Bolívar, Venezuela, type locality

Amblydoras gonzalezi (Fernández-Yépez 1968)    in honor of civil engineer Marcelo González Molina (1923-2000), who provided access to the type locality

Amblydoras monitor (Cope 1872)    allusion not explained; in presenting his paper to the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia in 1871, Cope reportedly described the swim bladder of A. monitor as having a “gun-boat style of shape,” perhaps a reference to USS Monitor, an ironclad warship commissioned in 1862 during the U.S. Civil War that received much attention at the time (name could also be comparing the fish’s bony shields to the Monitor’s ironclad hull; note that in the same paper Cope compared Physopyxis lyra to a “miniature iron-clad with mast and outriggers”)

Amblydoras nauticus (Cope 1874)    icus, belonging to: Nauta, Peru, type locality

Anadoras Eigenmann 1925    an-, without, referring to absence of plates between dorsal and adipose fins; Doras, type genus of family

Anadoras grypus (Cope 1872)    curved, referring to its short, smoothly curved snout (Mark H. Sabaj Pérez, pers. comm.)

Anadoras insculptus (Miranda Ribeiro 1912)    sculptured, referring to sculptured nature of exposed bones of cranium and pectoral girdle (Mark H. Sabaj Peréz, pers. comm.)

Anadoras regani (Steindachner 1908)    patronym not identified but probably in honor of ichthyologist Charles Tate Regan (1878-1943), Natural History Museum (London)

Anadoras weddellii (Castelnau 1855)    in honor of British physician-botanist Hugh Algernon Weddell (1819-1877), who presented type (a dried skin) and a drawing of it

Astrodoras Bleeker 1862    astro-, starry, referring to the elevated (e.g., stargazing) eyes of A. asterifrons; Doras, type genus of family

Astrodoras asterifrons (Kner 1853)    asterias, starry; frons, brow, allusion not explained, presumably referring to raised superciliary margin, creating elevated (e.g., stargazing) eyes

Hypodoras Eigenmann 1925    hypo-, under, allusion not explained, perhaps referring to anterior two thirds of adipose fin under a rhomboidal plate; Doras, type genus of family

Hypodoras forficulatus Eigenmann 1925    diminutive of forficatus, forked, referring to posterior swim bladder, described as “forked (divided into two horns)”

Merodoras Higuchi, Birindelli, Sousa & Britski 2007    meros, part or portion, referring to incomplete lateral line of M. nheco; Doras, type genus of family

Merodoras nheco Higuchi, Birindelli, Sousa & Britski 2007    referring to the town of Nhecolândia, Rio Paraguay basin, Brazil, type locality; nheco apparently does not have any particular significance other than having probably been a nickname for the town founder

Physopyxis Cope 1871    physo-, bladder; pyxis, box, referring to “osseus box” that encloses and protects large, greatly developed swim bladder of P. lyra

Physopyxis ananas Sousa & Rapp Py-Daniel 2005    generic name of the pineapple, Ananas (Bromeliaceae), referring to stout body and spiny appearance due to additional row(s) of spines on lateral plates

Physopyxis cristata Sousa & Rapp Py-Daniel 2005    crested, referring to externally visible series of emergent neural spines

Physopyxis lyra Cope 1872    lyre, referring to the postcoracoid processes, “curved, and the extremities dilated outwards, so as to present with the thoracic portion exactly the form of the Grecian lyre”

Scorpiodoras Eigenmann 1925    scorpio-, referring to “banjo- or scorpion-shaped” posterior swim bladder of S. heckelii

Scorpiodoras heckelii (Kner 1855)    in honor of Austrian ichthyologist Johann Jakob Heckel (1790-1857), who provided manuscript names and descriptions for many of the doradids that Kner ultimately described

Scorpiodoras liophysus Sousa & Birindelli 2011    leios, smooth or bald; physa, bladder, referring to absence of a secondary swim bladder


Anduzedoras Fernández-Yépez 1968    in honor of Venezuelan physician Pablo Anduze, who dedicated many years to practicing medicine in the jungle, and always found time to collect zoological specimens

Anduzedoras oxyrhynchus (Valenciennes 1821)    oxys, sharp; rhynchus, snout, referring to compressed head with relatively pointed snout

Centrochir Agassiz 1829    kentron, thorn or spine; cheiros, hand, referring to unrayed pectoral spines

Centrochir crocodili (Humboldt 1821)    of a crocodile, referring to its local name in Colombia, pexe que mata el Cayman (fish that kills caiman), referring to its sharp pectoral fins, known to kill caiman (or crocodiles) that attempt to eat it

Centrodoras Eigenmann 1925    centrum, middle, referring to eye in middle of head of C. brachiatus; Doras, type genus of family

Centrodoras brachiatus (Cope 1872)    armed, presumably referring to “very large” pectoral spines

Centrodoras hasemani (Steindachner 1915)    in honor of John D. Haseman (d. 1969), field collector for the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, who collected type

Doraops Schultz 1944    opsis, appearance, similar to other members of the family Doradidae

Doraops zuloagai Schultz 1944    in honor of Guillermo Zuloaga, assistant chief of exploration, Standard Oil Co. of Venezuela, who was largely responsible for inviting Schultz to study the fishes of the Maracaibo Basin

Doras Lacepède 1803    as defined by Lacepède, doras means cuirass, a piece of armor covering body from neck to waist (e.g., breastplate), probably referring to hard bony plates and/or thick, leathery skin (name does not mean “spear” per Valenciennes [1840] and others)

Doras carinatus (Linnaeus 1766)    keeled, referring to spines on midlateral scutes (which reminded Linnaeus of the longitudinal keels in “Scombris,” presumably Scomber scombrus, Atlantic Mackerel)

Doras higuchii Sabaj Pérez & Birindelli 2008    in honor of Horácio Higuchi, Universidade de São Paulo, for his “groundbreaking contributions” to the systematics of doradid catfishes

Doras micropoeus (Eigenmann 1912)    micro-, small; poieo, to make, referring to reduced or “rudimentary” anterior midlateral scutes

Doras phlyzakion Sabaj Pérez & Birindelli 2008    Greek for blister, referring to abundant pores on ventral surface

Doras zuanoni Sabaj Pérez & Birindelli 2008    in honor of Jansen Alfredo Sampaio Zuanon, for his “extensive and valuable” contributions to the collection, taxonomy and natural history of neotropical fishes, including discovery of this species

Hassar Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1888    Arawak name for species of Doras in Guyana

Hassar affinis (Steindachner 1881)    related, described as a variation of the closely related H. orestis

Hassar gabiru Birindelli, Fayal & Wosiacki 2011    in honor of Leandro Melo de Sousa, known to his friends as “Gabiru,” for his many contributions to the understanding of the Doradidae, including his M.Sc. and Ph.D. dissertations; he also helped collect part of the type series

Hassar orestis (Steindachner 1875)    in honor of Orestes Saint John, member of Thayer Expedition, who collected type (name was given by Louis Agassiz, leader of the Expedition)

Hassar shewellkeimi Sabaj Pérez & Birindelli 2013    in honor of Shewell “Bud” DeBenneville Keim (1918-2014), electrical engineer, World War II veteran, and nephew of Henry Weed Fowler (1878-1965), the first full-time curator of fishes at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, for his generous support of Academy ichthyology, including the preservation of Fowler’s legacy and the stewardship of his uncle’s fishes

Hassar wilderi Kindle 1895    in honor of zoologist Burt Green Wilder (1841-1925), Cornell University, who sent the collection made by C. F. Hartt in Brazil to Carl H. Eigenmann for identification (and then transmitted to Kindle for final determination)

Hemidoras Bleeker 1858    hemi-, partial, referring to species related to (and previously placed in) Doras but which lack teeth in the jaws and palate

Hemidoras morrisi Eigenmann 1925    in honor of Percival Morris, who collected type and served as Eigenmann’s assistant, majordomo and interpreter in the Iquitos region of Peru

Hemidoras boulengeri Steindachner 1915    in honor of ichthyologist-herpetologist Georges A. Boulenger (1858-1937), British Museum (Natural History)

Hemidoras morei (Steindachner 1881)    patronym not identified, nor can identity be inferred based on available information (could this be named after the same person Steindachner honored with the characid name Brycon moorei [note spelling] in 1878?)

Hemidoras stenopeltis (Kner 1855)    stenos, narrow; peltis, small shield, probably referring to long and narrow humeral process

Hemidoras stuebelii (Steindachner 1882)    in honor of German geologist-vulcanologist Alphons Stübel (1835-1904), who collected type

Leptodoras Boulenger 1898    leptos, thin, referring to longer body (with longer anal fin) compared to Oxydoras; Doras, type genus of family

Leptodoras acipenserinus (Günther 1868)    sturgeon-like, presumably referring to “peculiar” shape of head and snout, “elongate triangular, pointed, and much depressed in its anterior portion”

Leptodoras cataniai Sabaj Pérez 2005    in honor of David Catania, for his dedicated service to the ichthyological community since 1985 as Collection Manager of Fishes, California Academy of Sciences

Leptodoras copei (Fernández-Yépez 1968)    in honor of zoologist-paleontologist Edward Drinker Cope (1840-1897), for many excellent contributions to the study of neotropical fishes, including doradid catfishes

Leptodoras hasemani (Steindachner 1915)    in honor of John D. Haseman (d. 1969), Carl Eigenmann’s student and field collector for the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, who collected type

Leptodoras juruensis Boulenger 1898    ensis, suffix denoting place: Río Jurua, Brazil, type locality (also occurs in Peru)

Leptodoras linnelli Eigenmann 1912    in honor of George Linnell, Essequibo Exploring Company, who provided Eigenmann with boats and crewmen for his expedition to British Guiana

Leptodoras marki Birindelli & Sousa 2010    in honor of Mark Henry Sabaj Pérez, Collection Manager of Fishes at the Illinois Natural History Survey (1995-2000) and the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia (2000-present), for dedicated service to the ichthyological community, and for encouraging the study of doradid catfishes as a co-principal investigator of the All Catfish Species Inventory

Leptodoras myersi Böhlke 1970    in honor of Böhlke’s professor and good friend George S. Myers (1905-1985), ichthyologist, Stanford University

Leptodoras nelsoni Sabaj Pérez 2005    in honor of Douglas Nelson, for dedicated service to the ichthyological community since 1993 as Collection Manager of Fishes, University of Michigan Museum of Zoology

Leptodoras oyakawai Birindelli, Sousa & Sabaj Pérez 2008    in honor of Osvaldo Takeshi Oyakawa, for dedicated service to the ichthyological community since 1989 as Collection Manager of the Fish Collection at the Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo

Leptodoras praelongus (Myers & Weitzman 1956)    prae-, in front of; longus, long, presumably referring to longer snout compared to Hassar lipophthalmus (=Anduzedoras oxyrhynchus)

Leptodoras rogersae Sabaj Pérez 2005    in honor of Mary Ann Rogers, for her dedicated service to the ichthyological community since 1988 as Collection Manager of Fishes, Field Museum of Natural History (Chicago)

Lithodoras Bleeker 1862    lithos, stone, presumably referring to heavily armored body, including belly; Doras, type genus of family

Lithodoras dorsalis (Valenciennes 1840)    of the back, presumably referring to 5-6 oblong plates between dorsal and adipose fins

Megalodoras Eigenmann 1925    megalo-, large, presumably referring to large size of M. uranoscopus (up to 60 cm SL and 4.8 kg)

Megalodoras guayoensis (Fernández-Yépez 1968)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Caño de Guayo, Delta Amacuro, Estado Delta, Venezuela, type locality

Megalodoras uranoscopus (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1888)    urano, sky; scopus, watcher, “eye more superior [on top of head] than lateral [on sides]”

Nemadoras Eigenmann 1925    nema-, thread, referring to “simple” (vs. fringed) maxillary barbels; Doras, type genus of family

Nemadoras cristinae Sabaj Pérez, Arce H., Sousa & Birindelli 2014    in honor of Maria Cristina Sabaj Pérez, teacher at Friends’ Central School (Wynnewood, Pennsylvania, USA), for her contributions to the collection of the type series and to the well-being of the senior author (her husband)

Nemadoras elongatus (Boulenger 1898)    referring to elongate body (depth 5 times in total length) compared to presumed congeners at the time

Nemadoras hemipeltis (Eigenmann 1925)    hemi– partial; peltis, small shield, allusion not explained, perhaps referring to fontanel “not continued as a groove to the dorsal plate”

Nemadoras humeralis (Kner 1855)    presumably referring to rough and very wide humeral process, its greatest width equal to the eye

Orinocodoras Myers 1927    Orinoco, referring to Orinoco River basin, Venezuela, where O. eigenmanni is endemic; Doras, type genus of family                      

Orinocodoras eigenmanni Myers 1927    in honor of ichthyologist Carl H. Eigenmann (1863-1927), “who recently [1925] placed the classification of the Doradidae on a firm foundation”

Ossancora Sabaj Pérez & Birindelli 2011    oss, bone; ancora, anchor, referring to shape and articulation of pectoral spine and posterior cleithral and coracoid processes, which resemble shank and flukes, respectively, of a Danforth anchor                    

Ossancora asterophysa Birindelli & Sabaj Pérez 2011    aster, star; physa, bladder, referring to proliferation of diverticula along periphery of swim bladder                        

Ossancora eigenmanni (Boulenger 1895)    in honor of ichthyologist Carl H. Eigenmann (1863-1927), author of an “excellent” synopsis (1890) of South American catfishes                    

Ossancora fimbriata (Kner 1855)    fringed, probably referring to fimbriae present on maxillary and mental barbels (may also refer to many diverticula on swim bladder)

Ossancora punctata (Kner 1855)    spotted, presumably referring to dark dots conspicuously evident on head and body of syntypes                             

Oxydoras Kner 1855    oxy, sharp or pointed, allusion not explained, perhaps referring to “conically elongated” (translation) snouts of O. kneri (misidentified as O. niger) and O. (=Hemidoras) stenopeltis                                  

Oxydoras kneri Bleeker 1862    in honor of Austrian ichthyologist Rudolph Kner (1810-1869), who described this catfish under the name Doras (Oxydoras) niger in 1855                       

Oxydoras niger (Valenciennes 1821)    black, presumably referring to dark-brown or black coloration                                  

Oxydoras sifontesi Fernández-Yépez 1968    in memory of Venezuelan meteorologist-hydrologist Ernesto Sifontes (1881-1959), who devoted much of his life to studying the Río Orinoco, where this catfish occurs                            

Platydoras Bleeker 1862    platy, broad or flat, presumably referring to depressed head; Doras, type genus of family                     

Platydoras armatulus (Valenciennes 1840)    diminutive of armatus, armed, a Latin transliteration of armadillo, Spanish for “little armored one,” apparently its local name in Brazil, probably referring to bony shields along middle of body, covered with backwards-pointing spines                        

Platydoras brachylecis Piorski, Garavello, Arce H. & Sabaj Pérez 2008    brachy, short; lekis, plate or dish, referring to relatively shallow midlateral scutes                            

Platydoras costatus (Linnaeus 1758)    ribbed, possibly referring to rib-like appearance of longitudinal bony plates                               

Platydoras hancockii (Valenciennes 1840)    in honor of British naturalist (and father of modern taxidermy) John Hancock (1808-1890), who described but misidentified this catfish as Doras (now Platydoras) costatus in 1829

Pterodoras Bleeker 1862    pterus, fin, referring to forked caudal fin; Doras, type genus of family                   

Pterodoras granulosus (Valenciennes 1821)    granulated, presumably referring to 23-28 shallow lateral plates (or scutes) along length of body, which may give the scaleless skin a granulated appearance                            

Pterodoras rivasi (Fernández-Yépez 1950)    in honor of Luis A. Rivas L. (no other information available), who collected fishes with Fernández-Yépez and assisted with the description of this species                             

Rhinodoras Bleeker 1862    rhinos, snout, referring to pointed snout of R. dorbignyi; Doras, type genus of family                       

Rhinodoras armbrusteri Sabaj Pérez 2008    in honor of Jonathan William Armbruster, for his “sterling” contributions to the collection and study of neotropical fishes, and for “deftly” leading the expedition to Guyana that led to the discovery of this species                       

Rhinodoras boehlkei Glodek, Whitmire & Orcés V. 1976    in honor of ichthyologist James E. Böhlke (1930-1982), Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, for his work on South American freshwater fishes                    

Rhinodoras dorbignyi (Kner 1855)    in honor of naturalist Alcide d’Orbigny (1802-1857), who collected in South America for the Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle (Paris) from 1827-1833                   

Rhinodoras gallagheri Sabaj Pérez, Taphorn & Castillo G. 2008    in honor of Francis Richard Gallagher, mailroom supervisor, Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia (1967-2003), for dedicated service to the global community of taxonomists and systematists via the shipping and receiving of countless loans of biological specimens

Rhinodoras thomersoni Taphorn & Lilyestrom 1984    in honor of Jamie E. Thomerson (1935-2015), Southern Illinois University, who introduced the senior author to the study of fishes and led his first trip to South America (he also led expedition that collected type)                          

Rhynchodoras Klausewitz & Rössel 1961    rhynchos, referring to its turned-down, proboscis-like snout; Doras, type genus of family                          

Rhynchodoras castilloi Birindelli, Sabaj Pérez & Taphorn 2007    in honor of Venezuelan biologist Otto E. Castillo G., who collected much of the type material, for his lifelong dedication to the study and stewardship of his country’s rich diversity of freshwater fishes                            

Rhynchodoras woodsi Glodek 1976    in honor of Loren P. Woods, Field Museum of Natural History (Chicago), for numerous contributions to ichthyology                       

Rhynchodoras xingui Klausewitz & Rössel 1961    named for the Rio Xingu, Brazil, type locality                                

Tenellus Birindelli 2014    diminutive of tener, delicate, referring to delicate appearance of all included species                       

Tenellus leporhinus (Eigenmann 1912)    lepo-, hare or rabbit; rhinus, snout, referring to “peculiar leporine snout”                     

Tenellus ternetzi (Eigenmann 1925)    in honor of ichthyologist and naturalist Carl Ternetz (1870-1928), who collected type                    

Tenellus trimaculatus (Boulenger 1898)    tri-, three; maculatus, spotted, referring to black spot on dorsal fin and at base of each caudal-fin lobe                         

Trachydoras Eigenmann 1925    trachys, rough, referring to granular opercle, preopercle and coracoid-process; Doras, type genus of family                               

Trachydoras brevis (Kner 1853)    short, referring to its short (length) but high (height) body

Trachydoras gepharti Sabaj & Arce H. 2017    in honor of George W. Gephart, Jr., President & CEO of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University from 2010 to 2017, for his “bold, deft and heartfelt leadership of a Glorious Enterprise into its third century” [“Glorious Enterprise” alludes to the title of a 2012 book about the Academy, which is America’s oldest natural history museum]

Trachydoras microstomus (Eigenmann 1912)    micro-, small; stomus, mouth, its width “equal to half the distance between gill-openings”

Trachydoras nattereri (Steindachner 1881)    patronym not identified but probably in honor of Johann Natterer (1787-1843), who explored South America and collected specimens for 18 years                              

Trachydoras paraguayensis (Eigenmann & Ward 1907)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Corumba, Paraguay, type locality (also occurs in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil)    

Trachydoras steindachneri (Perugia 1897)    patronym not identified but clearly in honor of Austrian ichthyologist Franz Steindachner (1834-1919), who described several doradid taxa

Subfamily incertae sedis

Acanthodoras Bleeker 1862    acanthus, spine or thorn, probably referring to upper and hind parts of body covered by bony plates

Acanthodoras cataphractus (Linnaeus 1758)    clad in armor, referring to any or all of the following: heavily ossified nuchal shield; bony spine-like posterior cleithral (humeral) process; sturdy and well-serrated pectoral-fin spines; deep, bony thorn-bearing plates along sides of body from tympanal region to caudal-fin base (Mark H. Sabaj Pérez, pers. comm.)

Acanthodoras depressus (Steindachner 1881)    referring to strongly depressed head, almost completely flat across the top

Acanthodoras spinosissimus (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1888)    very spiny, presumably referring to “short sharp” spines on humeral process, “a series of which near the lower margin, is enlarged”

Agamyxis Cope 1878    aga-, much or very; myxa, slime, allusion not explained; according to Mark H. Sabaj Pérez (pers. comm.), Agamyxis closely resembles and sometimes occurs with Acanthodoras, which, when disturbed, exude a white milky mucous from the axillary region of their pectoral spines; perhaps John Hauxwell, who collected holotype of A. pectinifrons (type species of Agamyxis) shared such an observation with Cope

Agamyxis albomaculatus (Peters 1877)    albus, white; maculatus, spotted, referring to white spots on body, abdomen and caudal fin

Agamyxis pectinifrons (Cope 1870)    pectinatus, comb-toothed; frons, brow, referring to preorbital bone, or “comb,” the first bone in the infraorbital series (also known as the lacrimal), which is strongly toothed, forming a serrated crest anterior to the orbit (Mark H. Sabaj Pérez, pers. comm.)

Franciscodoras Eigenmann 1925    Francisco, referring to São Francisco River basin, Brazil, where F. marmoratus is endemic; Doras, type genus of family

Franciscodoras marmoratus (Lütken 1874)    marbled, referring to its coloration

Family AUCHENIPTERIDAE Driftwood Catfishes
25 genera/subgenera · 126 species 


Ageneiosus Lacepède 1803    a-, not; geneiosus, chinned or bearded, presumably referring to apparent lack of barbels (short maxillary barbels are almost indistinguishable)

Ageneiosus akamai Ribeiro, Rapp Py-Daniel & Walsh 2017    in honor of Alberto Akama, Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi (Belém, Brazil), for his many contributions to the systematics of neotropical catfishes

Ageneiosus apiaka Ribeiro, Rapp Py-Daniel & Walsh 2017    in honor of the Apiakás, an Amerindian ethnic group from the Teles Pires River, upper Tapajós River basin (Pará, Brazil), type locality

Ageneiosus dentatus Kner 1857    toothed, referring to its “remarkably long and pointed” teeth (translation)

Ageneiosus inermis (Linnaeus 1766)    “pinnis inermibus,” i.e., unarmed fins, an apparent misnomer since this catfish possesses dorsal- and pectoral-fin spines

Ageneiosus intrusus Ribeiro, Rapp Py-Daniel & Walsh 2017    intruded, referring to how premaxilla projects beyond the dentary, a distinctive character of this species

Ageneiosus lineatus Ribeiro, Rapp Py-Daniel & Walsh 2017    lined, referring to longitudinal dark stripes along side of body, a distinctive character of this species

Ageneiosus magoi Castillo & Brull G. 1989    in honor of Francisco Mago-Leccia (1931-2004), for his contributions to the study and knowledge of Venezuelan fishes, and his valuable work forming a new generation of ichthyologists

Ageneiosus militaris Valenciennes 1835    solider or war-like, presumably referring to long dorsal spine, serrated on both sides

Ageneiosus pardalis Lütken 1874    like a leopard, referring to reticulated or spotted pattern on head and back

Ageneiosus polystictus Steindachner 1915    poly, many; stictus, spot, referring to very small, brownish-purple spots and dots on body and anal fin

Ageneiosus ucayalensis Castelnau 1855    ensis, suffix denoting place: lake near near Río Ucayali, Peru, type locality (but occurs throughout Amazon and Orinoco River basins)

Ageneiosus uranophthalmus Ribeiro & Rapp Py-Daniel 2010    uranos, sky or heaven; ophthalmos, eye, referring to dorsally oriented eyes

Ageneiosus vittatus Steindachner 1908    banded, referring to prominent dorsal and midlateral stripes on body

Asterophysus Kner 1858    aster, star; physus, bladder, referring to digitiform diverticula surrounding swim bladder, which give it a star-like appearance

Asterophysus batrachus Kner 1858    frog, referring to its wide, frog-like mouth

Auchenipterichthys Bleeker 1862    referring to previous placement of A. thoracatus in Auchenipterus; ichthys, fish

Auchenipterichthys coracoideus (Eigenmann & Allen 1942)    eus, adjectival suffix: referring to it granular caracoid process

Auchenipterichthys longimanus (Günther 1864)    longus, long; manus, hand, referring to long pectoral spine, which is 2/7 of TL

Auchenipterichthys punctatus (Valenciennes 1840)    spotted, referring to brown or blackish spots on body and fins

Auchenipterichthys thoracatus (Kner 1858)    armored (as in breastplate), referring to exposed coracoid process that forms a plate on sides of abdomen

Auchenipterus Valenciennes 1840    auchen, nape; pterus, fin, presumably referring to elevated nape, which gives the appearance that dorsal fin originates at the neck region

Auchenipterus ambyiacus Fowler 1915    acus, adjectival suffix: Ambyiacu (also spelled Ampiyacu) River, Ecuador, type locality (also occurs in Guyana, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Peru and Venezuela)

Auchenipterus brachyurus (Cope 1878)    brachys, short; oura, tail, referring to shorter “caudal region” compared to A. nuchalis

Auchenipterus brevior Eigenmann 1912    shorter, referring to shorter mandibular barbels compared to A. demerarae

Auchenipterus britskii Ferraris & Vari 1999    in honor of Heraldo A. Britski (Universidade de São Paulo), for his contribution to our knowledge of auchenipterid fishes and the freshwater fishes of South America

Auchenipterus demerarae Eigenmann 1912    of the Demerara River, presumably the type locality in Wismar, Guyana

Auchenipterus dentatus Valenciennes 1840    toothed, referring to velvety teeth on both jaws

Auchenipterus fordicei Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1888    in honor of Morton W. Fordice, “a student of American fishes”

Auchenipterus menezesi Ferraris & Vari 1999    in honor of Rui Simões de Menezes (Universidade Federal do Ceara, Brazil), for his studies of the life history of freshwater fishes of northeastern Brazil, including this species

Auchenipterus nigripinnis (Boulenger 1895)    nigri-, black; pinnis, fin, referring to “deep black” pectoral and ventral fins

Auchenipterus nuchalis (Spix & Agassiz 1829)    nuchal, referring to elevated nape

Auchenipterus osteomystax (Miranda Ribeiro 1918)    osteo-, bone; mystax, moustache, referring to ossified maxillary barbels of mature males

Entomocorus Eigenmann 1917    entome, notch; korys, helmet, presumably referring to “hard, reticulated, or pitted” top of head

Entomocorus benjamini Eigenmann 1917    in honor of Marcus Benjamin (1857-1932), editor of the publications of the United States National Museum

Entomocorus gameroi Mago-Leccia 1984    in honor of Alonso Gamero, Dean of the Faculty of Science, Universidad Central de Venezuela, who guided Mago-Leccia’s introduction to ichthyology

Entomocorus melaphareus Akama & Ferraris 2003    melanos, black; aphareus, pelvic fin of a tuna, referring to dark pelvic fin

Entomocorus radiosus Reis & Borges 2006    rayed, referring to its many (19-22, rarely 18) anal-fin rays

Epapterus Cope 1878    etymology not explained, possibly epa– from epaites, beggar, or epedanos, weak or infirm; pterus, fin, presumably referring to rudimentary “soft portion” of dorsal fin

Epapterus blohmi Vari, Jewett, Taphorn & Gilbert 1984    in honor of Sr. Tomas Blohm (Caracas, Venezuela), who generously made his ranch available to the authors, which greatly facilitated their research

Epapterus dispilurus Cope 1878    di-, two; spilos, spot; oura, tail, referring to black spot on middle of each caudal-fin lobe

Liosomadoras Fowler 1940    leios, smooth and soma, body, referring to naked or unarmed sides and tail; Doras, type genus of family

Liosomadoras morrowi Fowler 1940    in honor of William C. Morrow, who led Peruvian expedition that collected type

Liosomadoras oncinus (Jardine 1841)    inus, adjectival suffix: onca, jaguar, referring to “body yellowish brown, variously spotted with black, and not unlike the markings of a jaguar”

Pseudauchenipterus Bleeker 1862    pseudo-, false, i.e., although this genus may resemble  Auchenipterus, such an appearance is false

Pseudauchenipterus affinis (Steindachner 1877)    related, referring to presumed close relationship with the similar P. jequitinhonhae

Pseudauchenipterus flavescens (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1888)    golden yellow, referring to yellow ground color on head, yellow opercle and triangular spot behind eye, yellow sides and ventral surface, and plain yellow fins

Pseudauchenipterus jequitinhonhae (Steindachner 1877)    of the Rio Jequitinhonha, southeastern Brazil, type locality

Pseudauchenipterus nodosus (Bloch 1794)    knotty or swollen, referring to large swelling at base of dorsal fin

Pseudepapterus Steindachner 1915    pseudo-, false; referring to similarity of P. hasemani to Epapterus dispilurus, particularly the reduced dorsal fin

Pseudepapterus cucuhyensis Böhlke 1951    ensis, suffix denoting place: Cucuhy (or Cucuí), a Brazilian district at the border with Colombia, type locality

Pseudepapterus gracilis Ferraris & Vari 2000    slender or thin, referring to more elongate body compared to congeners

Pseudepapterus hasemani (Steindachner 1915)    in honor of John D. Haseman (d. 1969), field collector for the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, who collected type

Pseudotatia Mees 1974    pseudo-, false, referring to “same general body-shape” as Tatia, but with higher ray counts in all but the caudal fin

Pseudotatia parva Mees 1974    small, 32.5-46.0 mm SL

Spinipterus Akama & Ferrraris 2011    spina, spine; pterus, fin, referring to four rows of serrations along pectoral- and dorsal-fin spines

Spinipterus acsi Akama & Ferraris 2011    named for ACSI, acronym of the All Catfishes Species Inventory, supported by the Planetary Biodiversity Inventory Program of the National Science Foundation

Tetranematichthys Bleeker 1858    tetra, four and nema, thread, referring to four very small barbels on adults; ichthys, fish

Tetranematichthys barthemi Peixoto & Wosiacki 2010    in honor of Ronaldo Borges Barthem, Museu Paraense Emílio Goeldi (Belém, Brazil), for his contribution to ichthyology, in particular to fisheries ecology in the Amazon

Tetranematichthys quadrifilis (Kner 1858)    quadri-, fourfold; filis, thread, referring to four very small barbels on adults

Tetranematichthys wallacei Vari & Ferraris 2006    in honor of English naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace (1823-1913), who collected and first illustrated this species in his expedition to the Rio Negro and Rio Uaupés region (1850-1852)

Tocantinsia Mees 1974    ia, belonging to: known only from the Tocantins River basin, Brazil

Tocantinsia piresi (Miranda Ribeiro 1920)    in honor of Miranda Ribeiro’s good friend Antenor Pires, taxidermist on expedition that collected type

Trachelyichthys Mees 1974    trachely, referring to close similarity to and relationship with Trachelyopterus; ichthys; fish

Trachelyichthys decaradiatus Mees 1974    deci-, ten; radiatus, rayed, referring to 10 rays in ventral fin

Trachelyichthys exilis Greenfield & Glodek 1977    slim or slender, referring to slender (or shallower) posterior cleithral process compared to T. decaradiatus

Trachelyopterichthys Bleeker 1862    Trachelyopterus, referring to previous placement of T. taeniatus in that genus; ichthys, fish

Trachelyopterichthys anduzei Ferraris & Fernandez 1987    in honor of physician Pablo Anduze, former governor of the Territorio Federal Amazonas, for his continued interest in the natural history of Venezuela’s Amazon region

Trachelypterichthys taeniatus (Kner 1858)    banded, referring to dark-brown longitudinal stripes on sides

Trachelyopterus Valenciennes 1840    trachelos, neck; pterus, fin, presumably referring to elevated nape of T. coriaceus, which gives the appearance that dorsal fin originates at the neck region

Trachelyopterus albicrux (Berg 1901)    albus, white; crux, cross, referring to white cross-like marking when viewed from above

Trachelyopterus amblops (Meek & Hildebrand 1913)    amblys, blunt; ops, face or appearance, referring to short, “bluntish” head

Trachelyopterus ceratophysus (Kner 1858)    ceratos, horn; physus, bladder, referring to two horn-shaped diverticula at terminal end of swim bladder

Trachelyopterus coriaceus Valenciennes 1840    leathery, i.e., cuirass-like, presumably referring to bony cephalic shield

Trachelyopterus cratensis (Miranda Ribeiro 1937)    ensis, suffix denoting place: Crato, Ceará, Brazil, where type locality (Rio Granjeiro) is situated

Trachelyopterus fisheri (Eigenmann 1916)    in honor of automotive and real estate entrepreneur Carl G. Fisher (1874-1939) of Indianapolis, Indiana (USA), “who helped to make possible a second expedition to the type locality [Columbia] of this species” (he may be related to Homer G. Fisher, Eigenmann’s student and co-author of several fishes species collected during the Columbia expedition)

Trachelyopterus galeatus (Linnaeus 1766)    helmeted, presumably referring to skin-covered cephalic shield

Trachelyopterus glaber (Steindachner 1877)    bald or smooth, referring to smooth head, covered in skin

Trachelyopterus immaculatus (Valenciennes 1840)    im-, not; maculosus, spotted, referring to lack of spots compared to the spotted Auchenipterichthys punctatus, its presumed congener at the time

Trachelyopterus insignis (Steindachner 1878)    marked, distinctive or conspicuous, presumably referring to color pattern: one specimen with numerous dark purple spots and marblings on upper half of body, a second specimen with spots all over body and fins

Trachelyopterus isacanthus (Cope 1878)    iso-, equal; acanthus, thorn or spine, referring to dorsal and pectoral spines being the same length

Trachelyopterus lacustris (Lütken 1874)    lacustrine (belonging to a lake), described from Lagoa Santa (and from Rio das Velhas), Minas Gerais, Brazil

Trachelyopterus leopardinus (Borodin 1927)    leopard-like, presumably referring to its “striking ornamental coloration”: black irregular longitudinal stripes all over head, body and fins, and belly “prettily sprinkled” with gray dots

Trachelyopterus lucenai Bertoletti, Pezzi da Silva & Pereira 1995    in honor of Carlos Alberto Santos de Lucena, curator of fishes, Museu de Ciências e Tecnologia de Pontificia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul (where second and third authors were students)

Trachelyopterus peloichthys (Schultz 1944)    pelos, mud, “living in very muddy bottoms with much vegetable debris”; ichthys, fish

Trachelyopterus robustus (Günther 1864)    strong, possibly referring to “strongly serrated” pectoral spine

Trachelyopterus striatulus (Steindachner 1877)    diminutive of stria, furrow, presumably referring to elongate fontanelle

Trachelyopterus teaguei (Devincenzi 1942)    in honor of British industrialist and diplomat Gerald Warren Teague (1885-1974), Director of Midland Uruguay Railway Company, who, as a passionate amateur naturalist, worked as a volunteer associate of the Museo de Historia Natural in Montevideo, amassing a magnificent collection of fishes and local information about them

Trachycorystes Bleeker 1858    tautonymous with Auchenipterus trachycorystes, trachys, rough; corystes, helmeted, referring to rugose cranial shield

Trachycorystes menezesi Britski & Akama 2011    in honor of Naércio A. Menezes, Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, who participated in 1976 expedition that collected type, for his “major” contributions to the knowledge of neotropical fishes

Trachycorystes trachycorystes (Valenciennes 1840)    trachys, rough; corystes, helmeted, referring to rugose cranial shield

Tympanopleura Eigenmann 1912    tympano-, tympanum; pleuro, side, referring to prominent pseudotympanum consisting of an area on side of body devoid of epaxial musculature where gas bladder contacts internal coelomic wall

Tympanopleura atronasus (Eigenmann & Eigenmann 1888)    atrum, black; nasus, nose, referring to intense black pigmentation on tip of snout in live and freshly preserved specimens

Tympanopleura brevis (Steindachner 1881)    short, allusion not explained, possibly referring to relatively short head compared to Ageneiosus brevifilis (=inermis), its presumed congener at the time

Tympanopleura cryptica Walsh, Ribeiro & Rapp Py-Daniel 2015    hidden or concealed, referring to close morphological and pigmentation similarities with congeners and to its previously unrecognized taxonomic distinctiveness

Tympanopleura longipinna Walsh, Ribeiro & Rapp Py-Daniel 2015    longus, long; pinna, fin, referring to its long, multi-rayed anal fin relative to congeners   

Tympanopleura piperata Eigenmann 1912    peppered, sides “everywhere lightly peppered with chromatophores”

Tympanopleura rondoni (Miranda Ribeiro 1914)    in honor of Cândido Rondon (1865-1958), Brazilian army engineer and explorer, whose Rondon Commission to install telegraph poles from Mato Grosso to Amazonas included expedition that collected type


Centromochlus Kner 1858    kentron, thorn or spine; mochlus, lever or crowbar, presumably referring to strongly serrated dorsal-fin spine

Subgenus Centromochlus

Centromochlus existimatus Mees 1974    considered, allusion not explained, perhaps reflecting Mees’ statement: “I have considered the possibility that the differences between C. heckelii and C. existimatus are not specific but sexual, a possibility that appears to be strengthened by the fact that the two have so often been collected together (as evidenced by mixed samples in collection)”

Centromochlus heckelii (De Filippi 1853)    in honor of Johann Jakob Heckel (1790-1857), curator of fishes, Naturhistorisches Museum in Vienna

Centromochlus megalops Kner 1858    mega-, large; ops, eye, referring to its exceptionally large eyes

Subgenus Balroglanis Grant 2015    named after the Balrogs, tall and horned characters in Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings” Middle Earth legendarium, referring to larger size of this subgenus compared to Duringlanis and the “horns” of their nuchal shield; glanis, sheatfish (Silurus glanis), now used as a general term for catfish

Centromochlus bockmanni (Sarmento-Soares & Buckup 2005)    in honor of ichthyologist Flávio Alicino Bockman, Universidade de São Paulo, who collected specimens that led authors to recognize this species as undescribed

Centromochlus britski Sarmento-Soares & Birindelli 2015    in honor of Heraldo Antonio Britski, who collected type, for “significant contributions and pioneer studies” on the systematics of auchenipterid catfishes

Centromochlus concolor (Mees 1974)    colored uniformly, the “plainest of all species, dark grey above, white below”

Centromochlus macracanthus Soares-Porto 2000    macro-, long; acanthus, thorn or spine, referring to elongate dorsal-fin spine, 28-35% of SL (although “etymology” section indicates pectoral-fin spine, presumably in error since dorsal spine is a diagnostic character of the species)

Centromochlus punctatus (Mees 1974)    spotted, referring to dense dark-gray mottling and spotting on a pale (unpigmented) body

Centromochlus reticulatus (Mees 1974)    net-like or netted, referring to “network of white (unpigmented) lines” on a light pinkish-brown body

Centromochlus schultzi Rössel 1962    in honor of ethnographer and fish collector Harald Schultz (1909-1966), who collected type

Centromochlus simplex (Mees 1974)    single, a “well-differentiated species so that, although only a single specimen was available, [Mees] felt no hesitation in describing it as new”

Subgenus Duringlanis Grant 2015    named after Durin the Deathless, eldest of the Seven Fathers of the Dwarves in Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings” legendarium, referring to small size of species in this subgenus; glanis, sheatfish (Silurus glanis), now used as a general term for catfish

Centromochlus altae Fowler 1945    in honor of Alta Dunn (wife of herpetologist Emmett Reid Dunn, see Tatia dunni), who first brought this species to Fowler’s attention

Centromochlus perugiae Steindachner 1882    in honor of Italian ichthyologist Albert Perugia, thanking him for donations of rare fishes from the Adriatic Sea to the Imperial and Royal Zoological Collection in Vienna

Centromochlus romani (Mees 1988)    in honor of Benigno Román (also known as Benigno Román Gonzalez), herpetologist, ichthyologist and Jesuit monk, who collected type

Subgenus Ferrarissoaresia Grant 2015    –ia, belonging to: combination of Carl Ferraris, Jr. and Luisa Maria Sarmento-Soares, for their contributions to the morphology and taxonomy of Centromochlinae from which Grant’s paper heavily depends, “notwithstanding the fact that [Grant] disagrees on some of [their] conclusions at supraspecies level”

Centromochlus meridionalis Sarmento-Soares, Cabeceira, Carvalho, Zuanon & Akama 2013    southern, referring to distribution in the southern Brazilian Amazon, a region referred to as “Meridional Amazon”

Incertae sedis

Centromochlus ferrarisi Birindelli, Sarmento-Soares & Lima 2015    in honor of Carl Ferraris, for “numerous contributions to the systematics of Siluriformes, especially Auchenipteridae, including the first hypothesis recognizing Centromochlinae as sister to all other Auchenipteridae”

Centromochlus orca Sarmento-Soares, Lazzarotto, Rapp Py-Daniel & Leitão 2017    referring to its coloration (black ground color sharply delimited from a white underside by a conspicuous wavy border), resembling that of the orca whale, Orcinus orca   

Gelanoglanis Böhlke 1980    gelanes, laughing or cheerful, referring to cheery appearance created by its “long and somewhat sinuous mouth,” with a “dorsally-directed fleshy flange from lower jaw on either side”; glanis, sheatfish (Silurus glanis), now used as a general term for catfish

Gelanoglanis nanonocticolus Soares-Porto, Walsh, Nico & Netto 1999    nanus, small; noticolus, night-lover, referring to diminutive adult size (~22 mm SL) and apparent nocturnal habits

Gelanoglanis pan Calegari, Reis & Vari 2014    Pan, Greek god of fertility and male sexuality, referring to large gonopodium of males

Gelanoglanis stroudi Böhlke 1980    in honor of philanthropist W. B. Dixon Stroud (d. 2005), for his support of the author’s field studies and collecting in the Colombian llanos

Gelanoglanis travieso Rengifo, Lujan, Taphorn & Petry 2008    Spanish word for mischievous, lively and animated, reflecting its cheery appearance (see genus) and nocturnal habits

Gelanoglanis varii Calegari & Reis 2017    in honor of the authors’ “dear friend,” the late Richard P. Vari (1949-2016), Smithsonian Institution, for his “for his great devotion, fascination and contributions to the study of the Auchenipteridae and other Neotropical fishes and for his unlimited willingness to help young ichthyologists to develop their careers”

Glanidium Lütken 1874    diminutive of glanis, sheatfish (Silurus glanis), used as a general term for catfish, referring to small size (“statura parva”) of G. albescens (described at 4.75 unciae, or 11.7 cm)

Glanidium albescens Lütken 1874    whitish, referring to dark-white (“fusco-albescens”), or mottled, coloration

Glanidium botocudo Sarmento-Soares & Martins-Pinheiro 2013    generic name given to native indigenous people wearing artifacts (botoques) on ears and lips; these Indians were the original inhabitants of large extensions of the Floresta Atlântica, including lands along the rio Mucuri valley and far west, to the rio Doce (Minas Gerais, Brazil), where this catfish occurs

Glanidium catharinensis Miranda Ribeiro 1962    ensis, suffix denoting place: Santa Catarina, Brazil, where it is endemic

Glanidium cesarpintoi Ihering 1928    in honor of colleague Cesar Pinto, helminthologist, for assistance and hospitality during Ihering’s studies in São Paulo, Brazil

Glanidium leopardum (Hoedeman 1961)    referring to leopard-like “bars and flecks” on body

Glanidium melanopterum Miranda Ribeiro 1918    melano-, black; pterus, fin, referring to “inky black” (translation) terminal halves of ventral, anal and caudal fins

Glanidium ribeiroi Haseman 1911    in honor of Brazilian ichthyologist-herpetologist Alípio de Miranda Ribeiro (1874-1939), Secretary of the National Museum in Rio de Janeiro

Tatia Miranda Ribeiro 1911    –ia, belonging to: Charles Tate Regan (1878-1943), Natural History Museum (London), for his many contributions to the knowledge of the South American freshwater fishes

Tatia aulopygia (Kner 1858)    aulos, tube or pipe; pyge, rump or buttocks, referring to genital papilla over anterior anal-fin rays of males

Tatia boemia Koch & Reis 1996    bohemian, i.e., “one who lives unconventionally, chiefly at night,” referring to its nocturnal habits

Tatia brunnea Mees 1974    brown, referring to “dark earth brown” color in life, brown spots on pectoral, dorsal and adipose fins, mostly brown dorsal fin, and large irregular blackish brown spots on tail

Tatia carolae Vari & Ferraris 2013    in honor of Carol Youmans, Management Support Specialist, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, for “invaluable” assistance to both authors over the years, particularly the senior author

Tatia caxiuanensis Sarmento-Soares & Martins-Pinheiro 2008    ensis, suffix denoting place: Floresta Nacional de Caxiuanã, a preservation area, Pará, Brazil, type locality

Tatia dunni (Fowler 1945)    in honor of Emmett Reid Dunn (1894-1956), “in appreciation of his studies on Colombian herpetology”

Tatia galaxias Mees 1974    milky way, perhaps referring to “evenly spaced small white dots” on a dark brown body, which could be said to resemble stars in the Milky Way

Tatia gyrina (Eigenmann & Allen 1942)    latinization of gyrinos, tadpole, presumably referring to its tadpole-like shape

Tatia intermedia (Steindachner 1877)    intermediate, with eyes larger than T. aulopygia but smaller than Centromochlus heckelii, its presumed congener at the time

Tatia jaracatia Pavanelli & Bifi 2009    named for the rio Jaracatiá, lower rio Iguaçu basin, Paraná, Brazil type locality (jaracatiá is an indigenous name for a fructiferous tree common in the region)

Tatia marthae Vari & Ferraris 2013    in honor of Martha Joynt, Management Support Specialist, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, for “significant” assistance to both authors over the years, particularly the senior author

Tatia meesi Sarmento-Soares & Martins-Pinheiro 2008    in honor of Dutch ichthyologist-ornithologist Gerloff F. Mees (1926-2013), for significant contributions to our knowledge of the genus Tatia, especially the species of the Guyana shield

Tatia melanoleuca Vari & Calegari 2014    melano-, black; leukos, white, referring to black-and-white color pattern

Tatia musaica Royero 1992    referring to its mosaic color pattern

Tatia neivai (Ihering 1930)    in honor of Arthur Neiva (1880-1943), founder, Instituto Biológico, São Paulo

Tatia nigra Sarmento-Soares & Martins-Pinheiro 2008    black, referring to its dark color pattern in large adults

Tatia strigata Soares-Porto 1995    striped, referring to numerous streaks on lateral portion of body

Family CRANOGLANIDIDAE Armorhead Catfishes

Cranoglanis Peters 1881    crano-, helmet, referring to bony plates on top of head; glanis, sheatfish (Silurus glanis), now used as a general term for catfish

Cranoglanis bouderius (Richardson 1846)    latinization of boidarion, Greek for little cow, referring to Chinese names New yu (“buffalo fish”) and Nou yu (“cow fish”)

Cranoglanis caolangensis Nguyen 2005    ensis, suffix denoting place: combination of Cao Bang and Lang Son, two towns in Viêt Nam where it was collected in 1999 and 2001, respectively

Cranoglanis henrici (Vaillant 1893)     in honor of Prince Henri d’Orléans (1867-1901), who helped collect type

Cranoglanis multiradiata (Koller 1926)    multi-, many; radiata, rayed, referring to its long, “multi-radial (actinomorphic)” anal fin (translation)

Cranoglanis songhongensis Nguyen 2005    ensis, suffix denoting place: Song Hong (Red River), Hanoi, Viêt Nam, type locality

Family ICTALURIDAE North American Catfishes
9 genera/subgenera · 52 species/subspecies                   

Ameiurus Rafinesque 1820     a-, without; meiosis, to reduce; urus, tailed, literally “not curtailed,” referring to absence of deep notch in caudal fin compared to forked tail of Ictalurus

Ameiurus brunneus Jordan 1877    brown, referring to brownish color of young and juveniles

Ameiurus catus (Linnaeus 1758)    low Latin for cat

Ameiurus melas (Rafinesque 1820)     black, referring to color (which varies to yellowish and brown)

Ameiurus natalis (Lesueur 1819)    Christmas, allusion unclear, perhaps referring to red and greenish (olive) tint on fins (colors associated with Christmas since at least the Middle Ages) in the specimen(s) Lesueur examined; most sources indicate that the name means “having large nates, or buttocks” referring to either a swollen and elevated caudal peduncle, a large adipose fin, or the swollen head and nape muscles of breeding males. We reject this explanation for three reasons: 1) Lesueur did not mention any of these features; 2) in Latin, “natis” means nates or buttocks whereas “natalis” means “day of birth” and is often applied to Christmas (several taxa endemic to Christmas Island, including two fishes, are named natalis); 3) Lesueur’s vernacular name for the fish, overlooked by previous scholars, is “Pimelode Noël” (basically, Christmas Catfish), which clearly indicates that Lesueur did not have nates or buttocks in mind when he coined the name.

Ameiurus nebulosus (Lesueur 1819)    cloudy, referring to cloudy (i.e., mottled) yellow-brown color

Ameiurus platycephalus (Girard 1859)    platys, flat; cephalus, head, referring to “very much depressed” head

Ameiurus serracanthus (Yerger & Relyea 1968)    serra, saw; akanthos, thorn, referring to strongly serrated pectoral spine

Ictalurus Rafinesque 1820    ichthys, fish; aelurus, cat, i.e., “catfish”

Ictalurus australis (Meek 1904)    southern, referring to specimens from southern Veracruz, México, that Meek had assigned to this species

Ictalurus balsanus (Jordan & Snyder 1899)    anus, belonging to: Río Balsas basin, México, where it is endemic

Ictalurus dugesii (Bean 1880)    in honor of Alfedo Dugès (1826-1910), French-born physician-naturalist in Guanajuato, México, who collected type

Ictalurus furcatus (Lesueur 1840)    forked, referring to forked tail

Ictalurus lupus (Girard 1858)    wolf, allusion not explained nor evident, perhaps an oblique reference to similarity to Pimelodus vulpes Girard 1858, a synonym of I. punctatus (vulpes=fox)

Ictalurus meridionalis (Günther 1864)    southern, being a southern (described from Guatemala) representative of the northern (central USA, eastern México) I. furcatus

Ictalurus mexicanus (Meek 1904)    Mexican, referring to country where it is endemic

Ictalurus ochoterenai (de Buen 1946)    in honor of Isaac Ochoterena (1885-1950), Director, Instituto de Biologia, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, who provided facilities for de Buen’s work

Ictalurus pricei (Rutter 1896)    in honor of ornithologist William Wightman Price (1871-1922), who collected type

Ictalurus punctatus (Rafinesque 1818)    spotted, referring to small, dark spots on body

Noturus Rafinesque 1818    noton, back; oura, tail, i.e., tail over the back, referring to connected caudal and adipose fins

Subgenus Noturus                               

Noturus flavus Rafinesque 1818    yellow, referring to the Kentucky (USA) specimens Rafinesque examined, “entirely of rufous yellow”

Subgenus Rabida Jordan & Evermann 1896    rabidus, mad, reflecting “Mad-Tom” vernacular used by African-Americans in 19th-century Virginia for N. insignis; meaning of vernacular may refer to one’s anger after getting poked by one of their toxic spines or (as reported by Ono et al., 1983, Vanishing Fishes of North America, but without attribution), or to their seemingly insane swimming behavior (presumably when startled?)

Noturus albater Taylor 1969    albus, white; ater, black, referring to contrasting light areas on caudal fin and dark saddles on sides

Noturus baileyi Taylor 1969    in honor of ichthyologist Reeve M. Bailey (1911-2011), under whom Taylor’s study was conducted

Noturus crypticus Burr, Eisenhour & Grady 2005    hidden or secret, referring to nocturnal habits and for having kept its identity a secret from researchers for so long

Noturus elegans Taylor 1969    handsome, referring to its “neat or handsome color pattern”

Noturus eleutherus Jordan 1877    free, referring to “free adipose fin,” i.e., incomplete fusion of adipose and caudal fins

Noturus fasciatus Burr, Eisenhour & Grady 2005    banded, referring to striking saddled markings

Noturus flavater Taylor 1969    flavus, yellow; ater, black, referring to its coloration

Noturus flavipinnis Taylor 1969     flavus, yellow; pinna, fin, referring to yellowish dorsal fin

Noturus furiosus Jordan & Meek 1889    mad, “the poison of its axillary gland is more virulent than that of” its congeners

Noturus gladiator Thomas & Burr 2004    swordsman, referring to large and serrated pectoral spines

Noturus hildebrandi hildebrandi (Bailey & Taylor 1950)    in honor of Samuel F. Hildebrand (1883-1949), “whose contributions to the ichthyology of the southeastern United States will long remain indispensable tools to his successors”

Noturus hildebrandi lautus Taylor 1969    washed or clean and neat, referring to its “trim, neat, and pleasing color pattern”

Noturus maydeni Egge 2006    in honor of ichthyologist Richard L. Mayden, Saint Louis University, for his work on species concepts and systematics and biology of central highlands (USA) fishes, and for publishing most of what is known about the life history of this cryptic madtom

Noturus miurus Jordan 1877    curtailed, referring to stout appearance of some specimens

Noturus munitus Suttkus & Taylor 1965    armed or protected, referring to large spines and serrae

Noturus placidus Taylor 1969    mild, quiet or gentle, referring to its “relatively poorly armed pectoral spine” compared to congeners

Noturus stanauli Etnier & Jenkins 1980    derived from the Cherokee words oostaunali (a shoal area in a river) and tsulistanauli (catfish), referring to occurrence over shoals with gravel substrate

Noturus stigmosus Taylor 1969    marked or branded, referring to two light spots in front of dorsal fin and brownish chromatophores on front part of abdomen

Noturus taylori Douglas 1972    in honor of William Ralph Taylor (1912-2004), U.S. National Museum, for his contributions to our knowledge of catfishes

Noturus trautmani Taylor 1969    in honor of Milton B. Trautman (1899-1991), Ohio State University, who collected type and studied the fishes of Big Darby Creek, Ohio, USA, where this madtom is (or was) endemic (likely extinct, not seen since 1957)

Subgenus Schilbeodes Bleeker 1858    oides, having the form of: Schilbe (Schilbeidae), a genus of catfishes that lack an adipose fin (Bleeker mistakenly believed N. gyrinus lacked an adipose fin)

Noturus exilis Nelson 1876    slim, referring to its slender body

Noturus funebris Gilbert & Swain 1891    funereal, referring to its uniform black coloration

Noturus gilberti Jordan & Evermann 1889    in honor of friend and colleague Charles H. Gilbert (1859-1928), ichthyologist and fisheries biologist

Noturus gyrinus (Mitchill 1817)    latinization of gyrinos, tadpole, referring to tadpole-like shape

Noturus insignis (Richardson 1836)    remarkable or extraordinary, allusion not evident since Richardson did not provide a description; Taylor, in his 1969 revision of the genus, said the “probable intention [of the name] was to emphasize the [yellowish] color and the long adipose fin, features which were at one time considered unique”

Noturus lachneri Taylor 1969    in honor of Ernest A. Lachner (1916-1996), curator of fishes at the U.S. National Museum, for his “outstanding work and interest” in North American ichthyology

Noturus leptacanthus Jordan 1877    lepto-, slender; acanthus, spine, referring to “small and slender dorsal and pectoral spines which are devoid of internal serratures”

Noturus nocturnus Jordan & Gilbert 1886    nocturnal, referring to its uniform dark-brown coloration, without bars or markings

Noturus phaeus Taylor 1969    “of the hue or color of twilight,” according to Taylor, referring to its dusky, brown or grayish-brown coloration

Prietella Carranza 1954   iella, diminutive connoting endearment: in honor of Carlos Prieto (no other information available), sponsor of expedition during which type was collected

Prietella lundbergi Walsh & Gilbert 1995    in honor of John G. Lundberg, Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, for contributions to the systematics and paleontology of New World catfishes

Prietella phreatophila Carranza 1954    phreas, well; philos, an affinity for (i.e., living in a well), referring to type locality, a 2.5-m-deep well in Muzquiz, Coahuila, México

Pylodictis Rafinesque 1819    pelos, mud; ichthys, fish, with the “d” likely inserted for euphony, reflecting several local vernaculars (e.g., mudcat, mudfish, mudsucker); Rafinesque wrote that the fish “lives on muddy bottoms, and buries itself in the mud in the winter”

Pylodictis olivaris (Rafinesque 1818)    olive, referring to its coloration

Satan Hubbs & Bailey 1947    after the Prince of Darkness, referring to its underground habitat

Satan eurystomus Hubbs & Bailey 1947     eury, wide; stoma, mouth, referring to wider mouth compared to sympatric Trogloglanis pattersoni

Trogloglanis Eigenmann 1919    troglo-, hole or cave, referring to underground habitat; glanis, sheatfish (Silurus glanis), now used as a general term for catfish

Trogloglanis pattersoni Eigenmann 1919    in honor of J. T. Patterson, University of Texas, who sent type to Eigenmann