Maximum size : 3.5 cm

Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras - Corydoras hastatus : Complete Fish Profile & Care Guide

Table of contents


The Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras (Corydoras hastatus) is a small and unique species of fish that is well-suited for nano or planted aquarium setups. These Corydoras make excellent additions to community tanks, particularly when kept with smaller and peaceful tankmates such as Tetras, micro Rasboras, very small Danios, and Shrimp. It is important to avoid housing them with larger or overly aggressive tankmates, as their small size may make them vulnerable to intimidation or predation.

Being schooling fish, the Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras should be kept in groups of six or more individuals to ensure their well-being. Creating a clean and well-aerated environment with dense vegetation is recommended, as it provides ample hiding places for the fish. A reasonable water current, achieved through the use of a power filter or canister filter, is appreciated by these Corydoras.

Unlike most other Corydoras species, the Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras exhibits a preference for midwater areas rather than the bottom of the aquarium. They can often be observed spending most of their time on the leaves of plants within densely planted areas. This unique behaviour adds visual interest to the aquarium and showcases its distinct characteristics.

In terms of appearance, the Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras features an elongated body compared to other Corydoras species. Their bodies are translucent white to olive in colour, with a narrow dark stripe running along their sides from behind the gill cover to the base of the caudal fin. Additionally, they have a whitish belly and two white spots located at the base of the caudal fin, encircling a prominent black blotch.

Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras Photos

Sexual Dimorphism

Distinguishing between male and female Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras is a relatively straightforward task. Typically, the females of this species exhibit a larger overall size compared to the males. When observed from above, the females appear wider in body width, providing a discernible visual difference between the sexes. This physical characteristic serves as a reliable means of identifying the gender of Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras in an aquarium setting.

Quick Facts

Scientific NameCorydoras hastatus
Year Described1888
Other NamesDwarf Corydoras, Dwarf Catfish, Micro Catfish
OriginsArgentina , Bolivia , Brazil
Max Size3.5 cm
Aquarium LevelMiddle
DifficultyBeginner - Intermediate
Best kept asGroups 6+
Diet & FeedingOmnivore
ReproductionEgg Depositor
LifespanUp to 5 Years

Water Parameters

Water TypeFreshwater
pH 6.0 - 8.0
GH 5 - 20
TDS 36 - 215
Ideal Temperature
68 - 82
20 - 27

Natural Habitat

The Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras is a species endemic to the Amazon and Paraguay River Basins in South America. These Corydoras can be found in various inland water habitats, including marginal channels, floodplain lakes, backwaters, smaller tributaries, and swamps. The water in these habitats is typically shallow and may vary in clarity from clear to murky. The substrates consist of clay or muddy materials.

The specific characteristics of the vegetation in their habitats can vary. In some areas, the vegetation may be sparse, while in others, there may be dense growth of grasses, aquatic plants, or floating plants. These different types of vegetation provide diverse ecological niches for the Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras, contributing to the overall biodiversity of their natural habitats.


To initiate the breeding of Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras, it is advisable to set up a dedicated breeding tank equipped with aged water, a sponge filter, and suitable aquatic plants. Prior to breeding, it is recommended to condition the fish with a diet consisting of worms and tubifex. During this conditioning period, females will exhibit a noticeable increase in body size, indicating their readiness to spawn. It is possible to condition a group of Corys simultaneously, as they may spawn together. However, it is preferable to have a ratio of two males per female for optimal results.

The introduction of slightly cooler water into the breeding tank can trigger spawning in well-conditioned fish. During the actual spawning process, the fish typically show reduced interest in food. However, they will resume feeding immediately after spawning has concluded.

Tail Spot Pygmy Corys typically attach their eggs to dense vegetation, although they may also utilize the sides of the aquarium if sufficient plant coverage is unavailable. Females hold a single egg between their pelvic fins, and the male fertilizes it for approximately 30 seconds. The female then swims to a suitable location and secures the adhesive egg. This spawning behaviour is repeated every three minutes for several hours, with occasional breaks lasting between 10 to 15 minutes. This spawning activity may extend over three to four days, during which a single female may lay anywhere from 30 to 60 eggs.

Neither parent provides any form of care or protection for the eggs. The eggs will hatch within three to nine days, with the exact duration depending on the prevailing water temperature. Upon hatching, the fry will exhibit a translucent appearance, although some individuals may display spotting. Suitable food options for the newly hatched fry include freshly hatched brine shrimp or microworms, ensuring their nutritional needs are met.

Diet & feeding

Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras are highly adaptable and readily accept a variety of high-quality dried foods in a home aquarium. Specially formulated granules, flakes, and sinking pellets designed to meet the nutritional requirements of fish are suitable options for maintaining the health and well-being of these Corydoras. These modern food products provide a balanced diet that fulfils the dietary needs of the fish.

To further enhance the overall health of the Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras, it is beneficial to supplement their diet with additional foodstuffs. Live, frozen, and freeze-dried meals such as bloodworm, daphnia, and tubifex can be offered once or twice a week as a supplemental source of nutrition. However, it is essential to note that bloodworms should be provided sparingly, as they are challenging for fish to digest and may potentially lead to blockages if overfed. Therefore, it is advisable to treat bloodworms as an occasional treat rather than a staple diet.

In their natural habitat, Tail Spot Pygmy Corydoras exhibit omnivorous feeding behaviour, consuming some vegetable matter along with their animal-based diet. Most modern fish foods take this into consideration and incorporate plant-based ingredients. Nevertheless, supplementing their diet with blanched vegetables like spinach, broccoli, and zucchini can offer additional variety and nutritional benefits. Care should be taken to avoid overfeeding, and any uneaten food should be promptly removed the following day to maintain optimal water quality and prevent potential health issues.

Other Corydoras of interest