Actinopteri (ray-finned fishes) > Osteoglossiformes
(Bony tongues) > Notopteridae
(Featherbacks or knifefishes) > Notopterinae
Etymology: Chitala: Bangladesh local name.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Freshwater; demersal; potamodromous (Ref. 51243). Tropical
Asia: mainstream of the Mekong in Thailand, Laos and Cambodia and the lower course of some tributaries.
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 120 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 30857)
Distinguishable by the presence of numerous small black spots (in the anterior half of the body), merging posteriorly into irregular oblique bands extending on the anal and caudal fins (Ref. 27732). Differs from all other species except C. lopis in having a large round black spot at base of pectoral fin. In C. blanci pectoral basal spot present in juveniles as small as 6 cm and retained throughout life (Ref. 7431).
Obligate air-breathing (Ref. 126274); Apparently restricted to areas with fast flowing waters, deep pools or rapids (Ref. 27732). Prefer habitats associated with rocky substrates (Ref. 37770). Occur in the mainstream of the Mekong River. Avoids tributaries and swamps (Ref. 7431). Reported to undertake short, local migrations (Ref. 37770). Active during twilight and night. Feed on fishes, crustaceans and insects. Also take smaller vertebrates (Ref. 58784). Spawning sites are found in inundated forests (Ref. 33813). Mature adults breed during the rainy season. Occasionally seen in the aquarium trade. (Ref. 12693). Has been bred for several years in Thailand (Ref. 7431).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Female guards the fry (to be verified).
Roberts, T.R., 1992. Systematic revision of the old world freshwater fish family Notopteridae. Ichthyol. Explor. Freshwat. 2(4):361-383. (Ref. 7431)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 125652)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: commercial; aquaculture: commercial; aquarium: commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingNutrientsMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82804
= 0.5166 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01122 (0.00514 - 0.02450), b=3.04 (2.87 - 3.21), in cm total length, based on all LWR estimates for this body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 3.7 ±0.56 se; based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Low, minimum population doubling time 4.5 - 14 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Fishing Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Very high vulnerability (88 of 100).