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Species: Bagre filamentosus, Filament Sea Catfish

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head shield granulated
nape rises to D
A base short, 19-22 (rarely 23)



Bagre filamentosus (Swainson, 1839)

Filament Sea Catfish

Head arched, little depressed; snout rounded as viewed from above; bony head shield with granulated surface, especially on elongate occipital process at rear of skull and sphenotic bone at midside of the shield), obscured by skin, its rear process narrow, tapering to rear, meeting a crescent shaped plate at base of dorsal fin spine; nape profile angles up to dorsal fin; 2 pairs of close-set nostrils; no fleshy furrow extends across snout and connects rear nostrils; 2 pairs of barbels (on chin and top jaws), top pair with long flat filaments; teeth on roof of mouth in four patches that form a narrow tranverse arc; gill opening wide, membranes not adhering to breast; dorsal fin VII, spines of dorsal and pectoral fin with long flat filaments; second dorsal adipose fin well developed; ; pectoral 11-13; tail fin deeply forked; anal fin base short, 19-22 (rarely 23) rays; tail fin deeply forked; a complete lateral line, with branches to top and bottom base of tail fin, no scales.

Brown to bluey grey above, lighter below; a dark blotch at front of anal fin.

Reaches 57 cm.

Predominantly marine, common around river mouths, and in high-salinity mangrove lagoons.

Depth range: 1-50 m.

The Caribbean to Brazil.

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  • Brackish
  • Hypersaline
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
  • Estuary
  • Mangrove
  • Mud
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • No Data
  • No Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Mobile benthic worms
  • Sea-stars/cucumbers/urchins
Egg Type
  • Brooded
  • No data
  • No pelagic larva
  • No pelagic phase
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
IUCN Red List
  • Not evaluated / Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 57
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 50