Corydoras come from South America and they live in freshwater. They are known as cory catfish, cory cats or just cories. Their name Corydoras comes from Greek and it consists of kory (helmet) and doras (skin).
Corydoras is a small aquarium fish. You can find many kinds of Corydoras, but they mostly differ only in their colour. Their size and their caring for is the same for all the Corydoras. When I saw a cory for the first time I thought that it was ugly. But after a while, I started to love it. Yes, it might look like alien life on earth, but that is the problem with us new guys in the aquarium business. Everything is new and strange. But the truth is, that Cories are very nice. There are many variants of cories, so you can find more or less beautiful Corydoras. We have Corydoras pandas and they are really irresistible. They really look like an aquarium panda bears.
Corydoras like slow-moving and almost still (but seldom stagnant) water, which is very clean and oxygen rich. They live on the bottom of the tank and in the wild eat bottom-dwelling insects, insect larvae, various worms, as well as some vegetable matter. In an aquarium corydoras should be fed with flake foods (which sink), sinking pellets, and supplements of live and frozen foods. You should give extra food to the tank, so other fish allow some to sink to the bottom, where the cories are. They like sitting in brightly lit areas of the tank, but they need shelter to hide in too. A shelter can be a cave or some plants.
The best place for Corydoras is a tropical freshwater community aquarium, because they get along very well with other species and are not at all aggressive. Corys are shy so it is recommended to keep them in groups. Corydoras love to be with each other, and play games, chasing each other around the tank, foraging for food with their tails in the air, and sitting in one place with each other in groups. They normally live very long. Once a Corydoras aeneus lived for 27 years in captivity, and 20 years is not too uncommon.
If you want to breed Corydoras, you should give them a good diet and water conditions, water changes of a lower temperature, and they will spawn. The ideal condition for breeding is two males to one female, or one pair. If you want to save all the eggs and fry, you can use a razor blade or credit card to gently cut the eggs off the glass (if on a plant, just pick up the plant or its leaf). Once my Corydoras bred, but I didn’t do anything, so other fish just ate the eggs. Little Corydoras should be raised in flat containers. After they are fertilized and the eggs hatch in the raising container, they are away from hungry mouths. Corydoras newborns should be given sinking microscopic foods. Micro worms also work. Water changes are necessary in small containers with lots of fish. When they are larger, Pandas love black worms, and the fry will grow fast once they can eat worms. But you should cut up the worms at first, or the fry will try to eat a big worm that simply will not fit in the Cory’s little body.
List of species
Here is the list of various corydoras species (links will open in new windows):
Corydoras adolfoi (Adolfo’s cory)
Corydoras aeneus (Bronze cory)
Corydoras agassizii (Agassizii’s cory)
Corydoras ambiacus (Spotted cory)
Corydoras arcuatus (Skunk cory)
Corydoras atropersonatus (Fairy cory)
Corydoras axelrodi (Pink corydoras)
Corydoras bilineatus (San juan cory)
Corydoras bondi (Bond’s catfish)
Corydoras concolor (Concolor cory)
Corydoras davidsandsi (Sand‘s Corydoras)