Sorubim—Psuedoplatystoma tigrinum—Valenciennes, 1840
If a catfish can be called beautiful, this is the one. Sorubim boast an elegant pattern composed of hieroglyphic black markings on a silver gray background dorsally and stark white ventrally. The common name sorubim is used for several similarly shaped species in the genus. Body markings, typical habitat and maximum size differ. P. tigrinum (shown above) is commonly encountered by anglers in Amazon lowland and Guyana shield highland fisheries.
|Bars and Markings||Colors||Size||Key Characters||Similar Species|
|A beautiful catfish uniquely patterned with heiroglyphic black markings dorsally, blending into black tiger stripes laterally. Fin markings continue from body, evolving into spots toward margins.||Body silver gray on dorsum, changing abruptly to white on ventral sides. Abdomen white.||Adults: specimens up to 1 meter in length have been reported.||Flattened head
|The genus contains eight recognized species, Although all are similarly elongate, many are uniquely marked and have separate ranges.|
|Known Range||Behavior Notes||Habitat||Common Names||IGFA records|
|Countries: Brazil, Peru, Guyana, Ecuador, Bolivia, Suriname, Columbia, Venezuela, Argentina
River Basins: Amazon, Orinoco, Essequibo, Corantijn, and Parana drainages
|Primarily feeding on fishes, P. fasciatum is readily encountered with cut bait on shallow sandbars in river channels. Although mostly an evening and nocturnal feeder, anglers are often surprised by large sorubim attacking artificial lures in open water at any time of day.||Primarily occupies lotic (moving water) environments in blackwater river systems.||English: Barred or tiger Shovelnose
Local: Sorubim, suribim, cachara
Other: Bagre rayado
|35 lbs. 10 oz.|
In addition to being a great angler's target, the barred sorubim is a pleasant adjunct to any fishery. Its habit of attacking artificial lures and then fighting like whiskered tuna, makes it endearing to peacock bass anglers and catfishermen alike. In most high gradient fisheries sorubim can be targeted by anglers at evening time. They tend to congregate and forage at the edges of shallow beaches with nearby drop-offs to deeper water. Small live bait or pieces of cut bait are equally effective when cast onto the beach and allowed to drift naturally to the nearby drop-off. An effective rig consists of a 10/0 to 14/0 circle hook (or smaller J hook) with a wire leader and relatively light sinker (approx. 1 oz.), enough to keep it down while still allowing the current to slowly carry it. The take is usually quite forceful. Once hooked, sorubim will fight in open water with strong runs and surprising stamina.