Family: PIMELODIDAE, Longwhiskered Catfishes
A short base
Body elongate, rounded, snout and head rounded to depressed; head with a bony shield that may be visible under thin skin; front and rear nostrils separated by a space > nostril diameter; rear nostril without a flap along its front edge; mouth at front or under snout; 3 pairs of barbells, 1 on top jaw, 2 on lower; dorsal fin with short base, 1st spine short, 2nd spine long and pungent; skin flap 2nd dorsal fin present; anal fin with short base; pectoral fin very low on side, with large, lockable spine; lateral line complete, not forked at end; no scales.
Primarily freshwater; central and S America; about 29 genera and ~110 species; 4 species in 3 genera in freshwater but entering brackish water in the southern part of the Greater Caribbean.
PREPARED BY D ROSS ROBERTSON, AFTER FERRARIS (2002)