Max Size: 5cm

Elegant Corydoras (Corydoras elegans)

Elegant Corydoras are a striking and most distinctive fish, and they are also a peaceful and sociable fish that makes an excellent addition to the community aquarium.

These Corys are not to difficult to keep and are suitable for the beginner aquarist; however, the Elegant Corydoras requires clean water that is high in oxygen and an adequate supply of food on the bottom of the tank.

Because of their social nature, keeping these fish in groups of at least six individuals is advisable.

This species is widespread in the aquarium hobby, and unlike the majority of Corydoras, these Corys seem to spend most of their time away from the substrate. They do not seem to disturb the sediment as much, often forming gatherings in midwater.

The Elegant Corys body is marbled with greyish-brown markings on an olive background. Compared with other Corydoras species, the body is not as tall compared to its length, and its eyes are set a bit lower.

A dark, dark-edged, wedge-shaped band extends from the rear part of the head to the caudal peduncle, and its anterior portion passes through several blotches. Below this band along the flanks is a pale stripe which, in turn, has a row of dark spots along its lower edge. Their gill cover is a pale blue, and their fins are grey. A mottled and spotted pattern exists in the head area.

Quick Facts
Scientific NameCorydoras elegans
Other NamesElegant Catfish, CW044
OriginsBrazil, Ecuador, Peru
Aquarium LevelBottom - Middle
DifficultyBeginner - Intermediate
Best kept asGroups 6+
Lifespan5 - 8 years
Water Parameters
Water TypeFreshwater
PH6.0 - 8.0
GH2 - 25
TDS18 - 268
72 - 79℉
22.2 - 26.1℃

Photos of the Elegant Corydoras

Elegant corydoras

Natural Habitat

Elegant Corydoras is reasonably widespread throughout the western Amazon Basin and has been reported in the Itaya, Tamaya, Nanay, Carahuayte, Ucayal Ampiyacu and Rios Yavari in Peru as well as the Napo and Rios Aguarico in Ecuador, and the Rio Solimoes in Brazil. They inhabit forested streams and rivers where the water is soft and slightly acidic with a substrate of leaf litter, mud sand and fallen branches.

Itaya River
Nanay River
Rio Napo

What to feed the Elegant Corydoras

Elegant Corys are foraging omnivores and will accept most high quality sinking dried foods such as pellets or wafers as well as small live and frozen fares such as bloodworm, daphnia and Tubifex.

Feeding your Corys on a varied diet will ensure the fish are in optimum health.

Under no circumstances should your fish be expected to survive on left-overs from other aquarium inhabitants or relied on to clean the aquarium.

How to sex the Elegant Corydoras

It is relatively straightforward to distinguish the males from female Elegant Corydoras. Mature females are larger and appear fuller when viewed from above, and their dorsal fin is usually transparent. In contrast, Adult males often display a more ornate and intense colour pattern and have three reticulated bands on the dorsal fin.

How to breed the Elegant Corydoras

Elegant Corydoras can be bred similarly to many other Corydoras species.

It would be better if you selected two males per female if possible. Once you notice that the females are visibly full of eggs, you should perform a large water change with cooler water and increase oxygenation and flow in the tank. Repeat this daily until the fish spawn.

Eggs are typically deposited on the aquarium glass, but it is recommended that you provide alternatives in the form of fine-leaved plants or spawning mops.

Once spawning is complete, you should remove either the adults or the eggs; if you chose to remove the eggs, you should put these in a separate container. The eggs can usually be rolled lightly up the glass with a finger.

The separate container should contain the same water as the spawning tank and be similarly well-oxygenated. It is also advisable to add a few drops of methylene blue or an alder cone or two, preventing the eggs from developing a fungus.

Incubation usually takes around 3 to 4 days, and once the fry has fully-absorbed their yolk sacs, you can feed them with small live foods such as artemia nauplii, microworm and suchlike.

The fry seems less susceptible to diseases when maintained over a thin layer of sand rather than in a bare-bottomed arrangement.

Other Corydoras of interest

Adolfos Catfish(Corydoras adolfoi)
Agassizs Corydoras(Corydoras agassizii)
Albino Corydoras(Corydoras aeneus)
Banded Corydoras(Scleromystax barbatus)
Bandit Corydoras(Corydoras melini)
Black Venezuela Corydoras(Corydoras schultzei "Black Venezuela")
View all Corydoras
Date Added: 28/01/2021 - Updated: 18/11/2021 19:35:22