Eclipse Catfish Care Guide: Look, Size, Diet & All | Updated 2023

By: Martin McAdam
Updated: March 5, 2023

Here, we will discuss Eclipse Catfish Care. The Eclipse Catfish is a difficult-to-find freshwater fish native to Southwestern India. These fish are not often kept in home aquariums, but those interested in supporting this species of fish as a pet should know that they require special care.

They are nocturnal creatures that will be most active at night. During the day, they like to hide in dark, shady areas. It provides plenty of hiding places in their aquarium, such as caves, plants, and driftwood.

They are bottom-dwellers, so they should be kept in an aquarium with a sandy substrate. They prefer slow-moving water, so a canister filter with a low flow rate is ideal.

Species Summary

Scientific Name:Horabagrus Brachysoma
Other Name:Sun catfish, Gunther's catfish, yellow catfish
Care Level:Easy
Temperament:Predatory with smaller fish
Color Form:Yellowish-brown
Lifespan:Up to 10 years
Size:12-18 inches
Water Temperature:72°-78°F
Minimum Tank Size:50-75 gallons
Tank Setup:Freshwater with caves, wood, and rocks
Compatibility:Fish of the same size or larger
Water hardness:5-25dGH
pH Level:6.0-7.5

Eclipse Catfish Appearance

The appearance of Eclipse Catfish is one of the reasons why they are a popular choice for aquariums. They have a unique look that will stand out in any tank.

These fish are yellowish-brown in color, with dark spots on their body. They have long black fins. Their bodies are elongated and flattened, which gives them a unique look. Their heads and eyes are large.

Eclipse Catfish Appearance

Their long fins make them good swimmers, often seen swimming in the middle or top levels of the tank. However, they spend most of their time near the bottom of the tank, where they hide among the plants and rocks.

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Eclipse Catfish Size And Growth Rate

When it comes to the size of Eclipse Catfish, they grow to be between 12 (30.5cm) and 18 inches(45 cm) long. It is still pretty big for aquarium fish. They are a slow-growing species, so reaching their full size may take several years.

Eclipse Catfish Size and Growth

The Eclipse Catfish is recognizable because it is more extensive. In pictures, the Eclipse Catfish looks much smaller because it is often compared to other fish species.

Eclipse Catfish Lifespan

Eclipse Catfish's lifespan is around ten years. If you want your fish to live a long and healthy life, provide them with a clean and well-maintained aquarium. Ten years is a milestone for a fish and is a sign that the fish was adequately cared for.

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Eclipse Catfish Breeding

Breeding eclipse catfish is not tricky, but getting them to spawn in captivity can be challenging. The best way to encourage spawning is to create a large planted tank with plenty of hiding places. The tank should have a sandy substrate and some driftwood or other décor for the fish to hide under.

The water temperature should be around 78 degrees Fahrenheit with a pH of 6.5-7.0. The tank should be well-filtered, and the water should be changed regularly.

eclipse catfish breeding

You can feed your fish live foods such as bloodworms or brine shrimp to induce spawning. You can add some floating plants to the tank to help reduce the light level.

Once the fish have spawned, the parents should be removed from the tank. The eggs will hatch in 3 to 5 days, and the fry will be free swimming a week after that. The fry can be fed live foods or finely ground flake food.

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Eclipse Catfish Behavior And Temperament

The behavior and temperament of an eclipse catfish can be best described as peaceful and shy. This fish is not known to be aggressive towards other tank mates. However, they can be territorial with other members of their species.

Keeping only one eclipse catfish per tank is best unless you plan on breeding them. This fish is a nocturnal creature, meaning it will be most active at night. During the day, they often hide among the plants or shadows.

Eclipse catfish are not known to be good jumpers, so a well-covered tank is recommended.

Eclipse Catfish Care

The care of Eclipse Catfish is not tricky, but there are a few things to remember.

First, they should be kept in a tank that is at least 50 gallons in size. This will give them plenty of room to swim and hide. The tank should also have a sandy substrate, as they like to burrow in the sand. The more space they have, the less stressed they'll be, and the more likely they'll thrive.

The tank should also have plenty of hiding places, such as caves, rocks, and wood. This will help reduce stress and make them feel more comfortable in their environment.

Eclipse Catfish are sensitive to changes in water conditions, so it is essential to perform regular water changes and monitor the water quality closely. These fish are also susceptible to diseases such as Ich and parasites, so they should be treated promptly if any problems arise.

If the conditions in their natural habitat don't change, they will soon be endangered.

Watch for signs of disease and illness, such as bulging or cloudy eyes, white spots, inflammation, open sores, and lethargy.

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Eclipse Catfish Tank Size

The tank size for an Eclipse Catfish should be at least 50 gallons. However, the larger the tank, the better. This will give them room to swim and hide in caves, rocks, and wood. Eclipse Catfish are nocturnal creatures, so they provide dim lighting; they don't do well with bright light.

You will want to mimic their natural habitat as much as possible. In addition to rivers, these fish live in swamps and pools and are used to sandy and muddy bottoms.

Eclipse Catfish Water Parameters

Water Parameters for Eclipse Catfish are as follows:

  • pH level: 6.0 – 7.5
  • Water hardness: 5 – 15 dGH
  • Temperature: 72°F - 78°F

They are freshwater fish, so they should be kept in water with a pH of 6.0 – 7.5. The water hardness should be 5 – 15 dGH, and the temperature should be 72°F - 78°F.

Check levels frequently, particularly for ammonia, nitrate, and nitrite, since these levels rise with a large amount of waste that Eclipse Catfish produce. You may consider adding cleaner fish or snails to help with the garbage. You should perform a 25% water change every other week.

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Eclipse Catfish Filtration

Filtration is necessary for an Eclipse Catfish tank because of the large amount of waste they produce. A canister filter or a hang-on-back filter will work well. Be sure to choose a filter rated for at least twice the size of your tank.

Keeping the water clean and filtered is essential because Eclipse Catfish are sensitive to changes in water conditions.

Some ordinary filters for Eclipse Catfish are:

  • Canister Filter
  • Aquaclear 50/70 Hang-on-Back Filter
  • Fluval FX4 High-Performance Canister Filter


Heating is necessary for an Eclipse Catfish tank because they come from tropical waters. The water temperature should be between 75°F and 82°F (24°C and 28°C). An aquarium heater will be necessary to maintain this temperature.

Some commonly used heaters are :

  • Aqueon Submersible Aquarium Heater
  • Fluval Eheim Jager Aquarium Thermostat Heater
  • Hydor ETH In-Line External Aquarium Heater

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Lighting is unnecessary for an Eclipse Catfish tank because they are nocturnal fish. However, to grow plants in the tank, you must provide light.


Plants are not necessary for an Eclipse Catfish tank, but they can help to create a more natural environment. If you add plants, choose ones tolerant of low light and carbon dioxide levels.

Some good plant choices for an Eclipse Catfish tank include Java fern, Anubias, and Cryptocoryne.

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Cleaning The Tank

You should perform a partial water change of 25% every other week. You will also need to vacuum the gravel and clean the filter media. Rinse the filter media in old tank water to prevent disrupting the beneficial bacteria colony.

To clean the tank, you will need the following:

  • A sponge: A sponge can be used to wipe down the inside of the tank.
  • A toothbrush: A toothbrush can be used to clean the filter.
  • Freshwater: You will need fresh water to rinse off the sponge and toothbrush.

The steps for cleaning the tank are as follows:

  • Remove the fish from the tank and put them in a temporary home.
  • Remove all of the decorations from the tank.
  • Use the sponge to wipe down the inside of the tank.
  • Rinse the sponge and toothbrush with fresh water.
  • Use the toothbrush to clean the filter.
  • Rinse the sponge and toothbrush with fresh water.
  • Add the decorations back to the tank.
  • Add the fish back to the tank.

It is essential to clean the tank regularly to prevent the build-up of algae and bacteria. Algae and bacteria can be harmful to fish, and they can also cause the water to become cloudy.

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Cleaning The Filter

It is essential to clean your filter regularly. A dirty filter can cause problems for your fish.

To clean your filter, you will need the following:

  • A clean bucket: This is used to hold the old water.
  • A garden hose: This is used to rinse the filter media.
  • Filter media: This is used to replace the old media.

To start, you will need to remove the filter from your tank. Then, use the clean bucket to hold the old water.

Next, use the garden hose to rinse the filter media.

Finally, replace the old media with new media.

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Eclipse Catfish Possible Common Diseases

There are some possible common diseases are as follows:

  • Ich: This parasite can cause white spots on the fish.
  • Columnaris: This bacterial infection can cause ulcers in the fish.
  • Fin rot: This bacterial infection can eat away at the fins.

You can help to prevent these diseases by keeping your tank clean and maintaining good water quality.

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Eclipse Catfish Prevention Of Diseases

These diseases can be prevented by taking some steps, which are mentioned below:

  • Quarantine new fish: When you add fresh fish to your tank, it is essential to quarantine them for at least two weeks. This will help to ensure that they are not carrying any diseases.
  • Clean the tank regularly: A clean tank is less likely to have problems with algae and bacteria.
  • Maintain good water quality: Good water quality will help prevent harmful bacteria growth.

Eclipse Catfish Treatment And Medications Of Diseases

The treatment and medications for these diseases are given below.

  • Ich: This can be treated with a drug at your local pet store.
  • Columnaris: This can be treated with medication available at your local pet store.
  • Fin rot: This can be treated with medication available at your local pet store.

If you notice any signs of disease, contact your vet or a qualified aquarium professional. They will be able to prescribe the proper medication for your fish.

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Signs Of A Happy & Healthy Eclipse Catfish

The signs of a happy and healthy Eclipse Catfish are:

  • The fish is swimming around actively.
  • The fish has a good appetite.
  • The fish has shiny scales.
  • There are no visible signs of disease.

If you notice these signs, your Eclipse Catfish is probably happy and healthy.

Eclipse Catfish Food and Diet

When we talk about the food and diet of an eclipse catfish, there are a few things that we need to consider. The first is that this fish is a bottom feeder. This means that they will prefer to eat food closer to the substrate.

The second thing to consider is that this fish is not a very active swimmer. This means they cannot compete for food against other fish in the tank.

The diet of an eclipse catfish should consist of the following:

  • Bottom-dwelling invertebrates: These can be found in the aquarium trade or collected from the wild.
  • Live or frozen bloodworms are an excellent source of protein for your fish.
  • Live or frozen brine shrimp: These are a good source of protein for your fish.
  • Algae wafers: These are a good source of fiber for your fish.

You can also supplement the diet of your eclipse catfish with vegetables such as cucumber, zucchini, and broccoli. These vegetables should be blanched or steamed before being added to the tank.

Good sources of protein include:

  • Earthworms
  • Insects
  • Invertebrates
  • Mussels
  • Shrimp
  • Small fish (yes, if you put them in an aquarium with smaller fish, Eclipse Catfish will eat them.)
  • Dried pellets
  • Plant matter

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Eclipse Catfish Tank Mates

Tankmates for an eclipse catfish should be peaceful fish that are not too active. Good choices include:

Like other catfish, Eclipse Catfish are somewhat aggressive with others of their species. The males may fight, but their skirmishes shouldn't draw blood and won't kill each other.

Eclipse Catfish Tank Mates

The temperament of your fish will play a significant role in determining who makes good tank mates. If you have a peaceful fish, then you will want to choose tank mates that are also peaceful. If you have an aggressive fish, you might consider choosing more active tank mates who can hold their own in a fight.

Some Important Tips

Here are some tips for keeping eclipse catfish:

  • Please provide them with plenty of hiding places.
  • Feed them live foods or finely ground flake food.
  • Do regular water changes to keep the tank clean.
  • Keep only one eclipse catfish per tank unless you plan to breed them.

Advantages Of Having Eclipse Catfish In Your Tank

The main advantages of having them in your tank are:

  • They are peaceful fish that won't bother other tank mates.
  • They are fascinating to watch and can be active at night.
  • They are not difficult to care for and do well in most aquarium setups.

Disadvantages Of Having Eclipse Catfish In Your Tank

The main disadvantages of having them in your tank are:

  • They are shy fish and may not be seen much during the day.
  • They are not good jumpers and need a well-covered tank.
  • They can be challenging to breed in captivity.

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I want to conclude that eclipse catfish are a great addition to any aquarium. They are peaceful fish that are interesting to watch and not difficult to care for. I recommend eclipse catfish if you want a new fish to add to your tank. Thanks for reading!

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