Max Size: 6.5cm

Rusty Corydoras (Corydoras rabauti)

The Rusty Corydoras is a small, attractive, peaceful Catfish ideal for the typical well-established, soft water community aquarium. These Corys are not too difficult to keep and are suitable for the beginner aquarist; however, these Corys require clean water high in oxygen and a sufficient supply of food on the bottom of the tank.

These Corys are very sociable and should be kept in a group of 6 or more individuals. Keeping these fish in more significant numbers will deliver an attractive display and make your fish feel more comfortable, bringing them out regularly.

Ideal tankmates for Rusty Corys could include small, peaceable tankmates such as small to medium-sized Cyprinids, Characins, Dwarf Gouramis and Dwarf Cichlids. However, it would be best to avoid housing these fish with much larger, more aggressive species as they will feel intimidated and may refuse to eat.

It would be best if you used a soft sandy substrate in the aquarium and provided your Catfish with some cover using driftwood or bogwood alongside some areas of dense planting, as this will give your fish security. You must regularly maintain your aquarium; this includes cleaning the substrate and frequent partial water changes as this will keep your fish in the best condition.

The Rusty Corydoras has a rusty orange body colouration that continues into the fin rays and a large black diagonal stripe on the top of its body that starts from the top of its head, extending down to the lower part of the caudal peduncle.

Quick Facts
Scientific NameCorydoras rabauti
Year Described1941
Other NamesRusty Cory, Rabaut's Cory, Rabaut's Catfish
Aquarium LevelBottom
DifficultyBeginner - Intermediate
Best kept asGroups 5+
Lifespan3 - 5 years
Water Parameters
Water TypeFreshwater
PH6.0 - 8.0
GH2 - 15
TDS18 - 215
73 - 79℉
22.8 - 26.1℃


Rusty Corydoras
Rusty Corydoras

Natural Habitat

The Rusty Corydoras is endemic to Brazil's Solimões River and the Negro River Basin in South America; it seems likely that these Corys may also occur in Peru and possibly Colombia. However, the full scope of its distribution is rather unclear. These fish inhabit oxbows, floodplain lakes and riverine habitats.


Rusty Corydoras are not particularly fussy in the home aquarium. They will accept sinking dried foods and small live, frozen and freeze-dried foods such as bloodworm, Tubifex, and mosquito larvae.

Providing your Corys with a varied diet will ensure your fish are in acceptable condition. However, under no circumstances should your Corys be expected to prevail on leftover food from other aquarium inhabitants or expected to 'clean' the aquarium.

Sexual Dimorphism

It can be fairly challenging to differentiate between a male and female Rusty Corydoras. However, females are typically larger and wider-bodied when viewed from above, especially when gravid. In contrast, males are slightly smaller and slimmer than females.


To successfully breed Rusty Corys, it would be best if you set up a separate breeding tank. This tank can be undecorated, but a soft substrate is a must, as your Corydoras will prefer to feed by rummaging in the substrate for food.

The water should be mature, soft and acidic, and the tank will need a low level of light, broad-leaved plants and gentle aeration. As the female gets close to spawning, you will notice that she will start to clean the surface of leaves or the aquarium glass on which she will lay her eggs.

Significant water changes with rainwater or cooler water and conditioning them with live foods can mimic their natural spawning behaviour and may encourage spawning.

The female may lay anything up to 100 eggs during a single spawning.

After that, the adults will take no further part in rearing their offspring and may consume the eggs if given a chance, so it would be best to return them to their usual tank.

It usually takes around two to four days for the eggs to hatch, depending on the water temperature and conditions and an additional two to three days for the yolk sacs to be consumed by the fry and for them to become free-swimming. Once they are free swimming, you can provide the fry with infusoria-type foods such as rotifers.

Once the fry is adequate in size, you can then introduce them into the community aquarium, where they will join the existing shoal. However, before moving the juvenile fish into the community tank, ensure you have balanced the water temperatures to lower the risk of triggering diseases.

In a heavily planted aquarium, these Corys can often spawn in the community tank, with some of the fittest fry surviving to adulthood.

Other Corydoras of interest

Adolfos Catfish(Corydoras adolfoi)
Agassizs Corydoras(Corydoras agassizii)
Albino Corydoras(Corydoras aeneus)
Armatus Corydoras(Corydoras armatus)
Axelrods Corydoras(Corydoras axelrodi)
Banded Corydoras(Scleromystax barbatus)
View all Corydoras
Date Added: 24/07/2022 15:43:06 - Updated: 24/07/2022 15:56:03