Care Level: Moderate
Live Plant Safe: Yes
General Description: The Salt & Pepper Pygmy Corydoras or Cory for short, is endemic to tributaries and pools of the upper Orinoco River basin in Venezuela and Colombia. The genus Corydoras translates to “helmet skin” which is true of these tough, little armored catfish. Corydoras also have spines at the edge of their pectoral fins to deter predators from eating them. These tiny catfish have are an overall tan-beige color that can shimmer a slight green under certain lighting conditions, with a black stripe at their midsection that runs the length of their body. Pygmy corys make for a great scavenging fish for the nano or planted aquarium, reaching an adult size of just under 1.5″. Like all Corydoras, Pygmy corys are very social. Being kept in groups of 6 or more individuals is a necessity for this species because it encourages confidence among individuals. Their shoaling behavior is also quite striking to observe. There are little differences between male and female, however females can appear a little more robust if viewed from the top.
Diet Requirements: Pygmy corys are omnivores. A diet made up of various high quality vegetable based and protein based flake foods, sinking micro pellet foods or wafers and bug bites are ideal, in addition to offering frozen foods such as bloodworms, brine shrimp and daphnia. Variety is the spice of life in order to maintain color, immune function and longevity of your fish. The biggest challenge in feeding Pygmy corys is that their mouths are extremely small, so food material needs to be selected accordingly.
Care Requirements: An established minimum 10 gallon aquarium is ideal for a small group of Pygmy corys, but they are versatile and can be added to somewhat larger aquariums. Unlike some of the other species in Corydoras, Pygmy corys should not be added into a biologically immature aquarium as they are sensitive to nitrite and ammonia. The aquarium should be aquascaped with twisted roots or driftwood for coverage and places to hide, in addition to generous vegetation (artificial or live, but live is preferred). Pygmy corys thrive exceptionally in live planted aquariums, and prefer dimmer lighting. Corydoras require a sandy to fine substrate; too coarse of a substrate could cause injury to their barbels. Corydoras are opportunistic scavengers, making them very beneficial to have to forage for extra food of all kinds that has fallen to the substrate. inter- and intra- specific aggression is almost entirely obsolete when it comes to Pygmy corys. Given their extremely small size and temperament, Pygmy corys are not typically suitable for traditional community aquariums that have overly rambunctious or competitive species that will intimidate them. Other common nano fishes are a good place to start when considering compatible tank mates. It may be best to keep Pygmy corys as the only bottom-dwelling, benthic fish species. Recommended water conditions, 72-78° F, KH 2-15, pH 6.0-7.5.
Purchase Size: Medium: 1/2” to 3/4”
Note: Your item may not look identical to the image provided due to variation within species. Purchase sizes are approximate.