Cory Catfish Make Great Freshwater Tank Friends

Posted by Christy Caplan
Cory Catfish

Have you ever heard of Cory Catfish? They keep the bottom of your fish tank clean! They're a wonderful addition to your freshwater aquarium. Experts at Aquarium Care Basics provide a Care Sheet on this species that's so helpful! These fish are essential for freshwater tanks. Caring for them is easy as they're super sturdy fish. They should be kept with small to medium-sized fish or they'll get lonely.

The Spruce Pets reinforces the need for other scavengers too as they make a bit of a mess!

"Corys tend to make a bit of a mess as they poke through the substrate and send algae and other muck into the water. Bottom line, while they can be considered part of your tank's "clean-up crew," they'll need a little help from snails, shrimp, and other scavengers."

They're super low maintenance so you should try adding them if you're just starting to fill your fish tank.

What should you look for when you're buying Cory Catfish?

You want to look for fish that are healthy, active, alert and moving.

Experts at Aquarium Care Basics advise you to really watch the fish before buying them.

"Make sure the Cory has both its eyes, and look to see that its fins and tail are not damaged. Also, make sure the Cory has complete barbels on each side of its mouth. Barbels look like little whiskers."

You need to watch the dynamics of the tank. Some Cory Catfish can be shy and timid. They are active and curious bottom dwellers, methodically scavenging the tank bottom looking for some food to eat. They can be very active during the day, but they can also spend time peacefully resting motionless in the same spot.  

"Cory Catfish can do well in covered tanks of nearly any size and dimensions. Many beginner hobbyists keep Corydoras Catfish in small tanks like 10 gallon aquariums. Cory Cats can thrive in larger tanks too."

Some facts about these Cory Catfish you need to know:

  • Cory Catfish size can range from about 1 inch to about 2.5 inches in length.
  • A Cory Catfish is a bottom dweller, so it's a good idea to keep at least 2 inches of aquarium gravel or substrate on the tank bottom. Cory Catfish also seem to really enjoy a tank with lots of live plants.
  • Cory Cats do not do well in tanks with poor water conditions.
  • Cory Catfish diet includes basic food types including fish flakes, pellets and bottom feeder tablets.
A few Cory Catfish to consider include is the Bronze Cory Catfish, Julii Cory Catfish, and the Bandit Cory Catfish. They're very social so you need more than one.
Here are some statistics from The Spruce Pets about three Cory Catfish.

Bronze Cory Catfish

  • Scientific Name: Corydoras aeneus
  • Also Known As Green Corydoras
  • Adult Size: 2.5 inches (6 cm)
  • Lifespan: 5 years​
  • Tankmates: Peaceful schooling fish

Julii Cory Catfish

  • Scientific Name: Corydoras julii
  • Adult Size: 2.5 inches (6 cm)
  • Lifespan: 5+ years
  • Tankmates: Peaceful bottom-dwelling schooling fish

Bandit Cory Catfish

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It’s like he was posing for me!

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  • Scientific Name: Corydoras metae
  • Adult Size: 2 inches (5 cm)
  • Lifespan: 5 years
  • Tankmates: Peaceful schooling species

These beautiful fish mainly hang out at the bottom of the tank! Always consider Cory Catfish if you're adding freshwater fish to a tank as this is the ideal dynamic for your fish tank. Things to consider will be tank size, water parameters, the water temperature, community tank, and whether or not you have peaceful fish. They're known as armored catfish!

It's great to have different species but you want to make sure they are peaceful fish so the Cory Catfish don't get picked on. These are small fish and they're known as community fish. Look at a variety of aquarium plants as this has an impact on water changes. Flake foods will work for their diet but there should be a variety. A ten-gallon tank will work but perhaps consider one that's larger.

Tetras and Swordtails will be a good fit for the tank. There are many species of corydoras. Look at the Albino Cory, Panda Cory, Pygmy Cory, and Peppered Cory!

Please leave us a comment below and let us know what you think of your fish tank?

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Cory Catfish Make Great Freshwater Tank Friends