Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

Español  Contact

Species: Brachyplatystoma filamentosum, Kumakuma catfish, the Kumakuma

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

17-21 gill rakers
A base = D2 base

Brachyplatystoma filamentosum (Lichtenstein, 1819)


Body elongate, rounded; snout and head depressed; head with a bony shield; front and rear nostrils well separated; eye small (~1/5 snout length), on upper side of head; rear nostril without a flap along its front edge; mouth well under snout; large patches of teeth on sides of roof of mouth; 3 pairs of barbels, top barbels very long, reaching past end of tail; 17-21 gill rakers; 1st dorsal fin large, with short base, 1st spine short, 2nd spine long and pungent; large skin flap 2nd dorsal fin present; anal fin behind dorsal fin base, base short, equal to 2nd dorsal base; pectoral fin very low on side, with large, lockable spine; tail fin deeply forked, upper lobe with a very long filament in juveniles and sub adults, which shortens and may be lost in adults; lateral line complete; scaleless

Head and upper back dark grayish; fins whitish.

Reaches 360 cm.

Juveniles and subadults in river mouths.

Depth range: 1-30 m.

The Gulf of Paria (Venezuela) to northern Brazil.

High Resolution Map Download

Species Data Create Report Export as Word File Export as Excel File
  • Brackish
  • Freshwater
  • Non Marine
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Estuary
  • Mud
  • Freshwater
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Sea snakes/mammals/turtles/birds
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Benthic
  • No pelagic larva
  • No pelagic phase
Global Endemism
  • All species.
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • All species..
  • Continent
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Continent only
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
IUCN Red List
  • Not evaluated / Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 360
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 30