Arius caelatus [Status Unaccepted]   Valenciennes,  1840 (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: Myan Than Tun

Size: 30-45 cm.

Color: Body bluish black on top of head and back, white or dark grey below and flanks are metallic blue in color. Adipose fin black, at least the distal part of the fins blackish.

Body robust and elongate. Head profile concave at nape with the supra occipital process rising thereafter. Mouth subterminal. Teeth on palate in two more or less triangular patches. 3 pairs of barbels. The maxillary and outer mandibular barbels of unequal length. Dorsal fin spine coarsely granulated. Pectoral fin spine strong and also coarsely granulated. Dorsal spines (total): 1; Dorsal soft rays (total): 7; Anal soft rays: 16 - 30.
Head width equal to its length without snout. Upper surface of head granulated. Occipital process carinated, its sides nearly parallel, as long as or slightly longer than its base, which is not much broader than its concave end, which is connected with the small, crescent shaped, corrugated basal bone of the dorsal spine. The narrow median fontanel, beginning behind the eye, reaches to the keel of the keel of the occipital process. Dorsal profile sloping downwards in a straight line. Eye with a free orbital margin. Maxillary barbels extend to the middle or to the end of the pectoral fin, mandibulary barbels to half of pectorals, mental ones ½ shorter. Height of dorsal about equal to length of head. Dorsal spine produced into a soft, long filament, its osseous part equals to head, very strong, particularly in its basal half, granulated anteriorly, serrated behind. Adipose fin considerably shorter than dorsal, more than thrice in its distance from dorsal, opposite to anterior half of anal, the height of which is nearly equal to the length of the ventrals, which reach to the origin of the anal and are longer than head without its postorbital part. Pectorals somewhat shorter than head, their spine shorter and less strong than the dorsal one. Caudal deeply forked. Villiform teeth in the jaws in an arcuate band. On the palate in two widely separate, triangular patches, the anterior rounded base of which is considerably longer than their height. About 8 stiff, flattened gillrakers, which are about equal to 1/3 of the eye.

Remarks: Values in above description denote proportions.

Synonym (s)
Arius acquibarbis non Valenciennes, 1864
Arius aroides Gunther, 1864
Arius nenga Day, 1877
Tachysurus caelatus Misra, 1976
Tachysurus nenga Misra, 1976
Arius caelatus Valenciennes, 1840
(Senior synonym)
Arius nenga (non Hamilton, 1822)
(Misapplied name)
Nemapteryx caelata (Valenciennes, 1840)
(Senior synonym)
Tachysurus caelatus (Valenciennes, 1840)
(Senior synonym)
Tachysurus nenga (non Hamilton, 1822)
(Misapplied name)
Arius caelatoides Bleeker, 1846
Arius microgastropterygius Bleeker, 1846
Arius clypeaster Bleeker, 1846
Arius clypeastroides Bleeker, 1846
Arius chondropterygius Bleeker, 1846
Arius melanopterygius Bleeker, 1849
Cephalocassis caelatus Bleeker, 1858
Arius caelatus Bleeker, 1862
Arius caelatus Gunther, 1864
Arius caelatus Day, 1888
Arius caelatus Vinciguerra, 1880

Common Name (s)
• Engraved Catfish (English)
• Galiyi (Kannada)
• Kelithi (Malayalam)
• Keleru (Tamil)
• Shingala
• Kazhu-theydoo (Malayalam)
• Keliru (Tamil)
• Keluru (Tamil)
• Kontia
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial, Dangers
(Marketed fresh or frozen also dried and salted
Traumatogenic )

Habitat:  Demersal, Estuarine
Trophic Level:  Tertiary Consumer
Prey:  Shrimps, crabs and small fishes.


• West Bengal, Digha Coast (Lat: 21.61) (Long: 87.53) INDIA
• Maharashtra, Bassein INDIA
• Maharashtra, Murud INDIA
• Maharashtra, Mumbai INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Chennai Coast INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Gulf of Mannar INDIA
• Orissa, Chilika INDIA
• Maharashtra, Amba Estuary INDIA
• Maharashtra, Kila Bander INDIA
• Gujarat, Off Kandla INDIA (Record: 1986-1987)
• Gujarat INDIA
• West Bengal (Lat: 21.45) (Long: 87.9) INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • Rama Rao, KV (1995) Pisces Wetland ecosystem series 1: Fauna of Chilika lake ZSI, Calcutta 483-506 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Singh, DF and Yazdani, GM (1993) Ichthyofauna of Konkan region of Maharashtra (India) Records of the Zoological Survey of India. Occasional paper no 145 ZSI, Calcutta 46 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Dhanze, JR and Jayaram, KC (1990) Comparative morphology of the Osteocranium in three species of the genus with a note on its utility in taxonomy (Ariidae: Siluriformes) Occasional paper no 123 Records of the Zoological Survey of India ZSI 17168 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • Khan, RA (2003) Fish faunal resources of Sunderban estuarine system with special reference to the biology of some commercially important species Records of the Zoological Survey of India ZSI, Kolkata 1-149 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • Jayaram, KC (1982) Aid to the identification of the siluroid fishes of India, Burma, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh: Ariidae and Plotosidae Occasional paper no 37 Records of the Zoological Survey of India ZSI 14977 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • Talwar, PK and Kacker, RK (1984) Commercial sea fishes of India ZSI, Calcutta 997 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Ocean Biogeographic Information System Available at -
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  • Goswami, BCB (1992) Marine fauna of Digha coast of West Bengal, India Journal of Marine Biological Association of India The Marine Biological Association of India, Cochin 34 115-137 Available at - NIO, RC Kochi
  • Tun, MT (2001) Marine fishes of Myanmar (pelagic and demersal) U Than Tun, Director-General, Department of Fisheries, Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries, Myanmar 276 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
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  • Weber, M; Beaufort, LF (1965) The fishes of the Indo-Australian Archipelago E.J. Brill, Leiden, Holland 2 404 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Marine Biological Station, Chennai, Tamil Nadu (2003) Checklist of marine fauna of Tamil Nadu Department of Environment, Government of Tamil Nadu Available at -
  • Dr. Ramesh, R; Dr. Nammalwar, P and Dr. Gowri, VS (2008) Database on coastal information of Tamil Nadu Report Submitted to Environmental Information System (ENVIS) Centre, Department of Environment, Government of Tamil Nadu Institute for Ocean Management, Anna University, Chennai, Tamil Nadu. Available at -
  • Satapathy, D and Panda, S (2009) Fish atlas of Chilika Chilika Development Authority, Bhubaneswar 74 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Gajbhiye, SN; Mehta, P; Mustafa, S and Nair, VR (1995) A case study on the impact of industrial effluents disposal on the fisheries of Amba river estuary, Maharastra Journal of the Indian Fisheries Association Indian Fisheries Association 25 25-38 Available at -
  • Fischer, W and Bianchi, G (Eds.) (1984) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean; (Fishing area 51). FAO, Rome 1 Available at -
  • Fischer, W and Whitehead, PJP (1974) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Eastern Indian Ocean - Fishing Area 57 and Western Central Pacific - Fishing Area 71 FAO, Rome 1 Available at -
  • Nair, VR; Govindan, K; Ramaiah, N and Gajbhiye, SN (1993) Fishery potential of the Gulf of Kachchh Journal of the Indian Fisheries Association Indian Fisheries Association 23 91-103 Available at -
  • Kizhakudan, SJ; Nair, KVS and Zala, MS Demersal Finfish Resources of Gujarat Sustainable fisheries development: Focus on Gujarat 57-66 Available at -
  • Pillai, PKM and Augustine, SK (2000) A code list of common marine living resources of the Indian seas CMFRI Special Publication No.12 CMFRI 1-115 Available at -
  • Das, P; De, SP; Bhowmik, RM; Pandit, IK; Sengupta, R; Nandi, AC; Thakurta, SC and Saha, S (2007) Piscine diversity of West Bengal Fishing chimes 27(5) 15-28 Available at - NIO, Goa

Page last updated on:2012-01-06

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