Fish, Tanks and Ponds

Fish, Tanks and Ponds
A comprehensive guide to fish

Corydoras arcuatus

Skunk cory

Skunk corydoras, Corydoras arcuatusSkunk corydoras, Corydoras arcuatus
Photos by Andy Rapson


Corydoras: Greek, kory = helmet + greek, doras = skin

General Notes:

Most skunk corys are bred in captivity rather than being wild caught as such they are quite used to life in a fish tank and settle in very quickly. Wild caught specimens are initially very shy and slightly timid so its important to ensure that they get enough food. Once settled they make great community fish when housed with other small peaceful fish. Avoid using sharp substrate with any Corydoras, sand or rounded substrate is essential in order to prevent the fish's barbels from becoming damaged and possibly infected.  Corydoras arcuatus like most other Corydoras is better when kept in small mixed sex groups of five or six individuals. When purchasing and Corydoras check their eyes. All Corydoras have sharp pointed spines in their pectoral fins and when lots of individuals are packed in a bag for shipping it is very easy for eyes to get damaged especially on a rough journey. Fish with damaged eyes may suffer secondary infections and so it is best to avoid the potential problem with a simple check in the first place.


Feeding skunk corys presents no problems, they will accept a wide range of commercial prepared food including flake food, Catfish pellets, and both frozen a live food.


As with most Corydoras the females are larger and plumper than the males when adult. While the males are more brightly coloured.


A difficult Corydoras to breed, feeding lots of live food or frozen food and making lots of water changes using cooler water will bring the fish in to breeding condition. Neither parent will pay any attention to the eggs post spawning.

Wild status

Corydoras arcuatus is widespread in the Upper Amazon and its tributaries and so isn't under any immediate threat.

Information at a glance

pH: 6 - 8
dGH: 4 - 25
Temperature: 22 - 26°C (72 - 79°F)
Diet: Omnivore
Size: 5.5cm (2.2in)
Min tank size: 60 litres
Difficulty level: Easy
Aquarium type: Community
Swimming level: Bottom

Distribution and habitat

distribution map for Skunk corydoras, Corydoras arcuatus

Origin: S America, Upper Amazon

Habitat: Rivers and streams.


Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Siluriformes
Family: Callichthyidae
Sub-family: Corydoradinae
Genus: Corydoras
Species: C. arcuatus, Elwin, 1938

Common name:
Skunk cory

Synonyms: none