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Is My Cory Catfish Male or Female? (How to Tell)

Is My Cory Catfish Male or Female? (How to Tell)

This post is written to the author's best knowledge and is not intended to be used in place of veterinary advice. In addtion, this post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Sometimes it isn’t simple to tell the difference between various types of male and female fish. There are fish types that look very similar and only have slight differences that you won’t catch at first.

If you’ve recently bought some cory catfish, then you could be having the same issue. How can you tell if your cory catfish is male or female?

Read on to learn about the differences between male and female cory catfish. You’ll learn about ways to identify the sex of these fish visually as well as behavioral differences.

After you’ve learned how to better identify the sex of these fish, you’ll have a way easier time telling them apart. Learning how to do this can be tough for beginners, but you will be able to figure it out once you know what to look for.

Physical Differences

Pair of Slate Corydoras

The first thing that you should know is that there are several different types of cory catfish out there. Most of them make it very hard to tell the difference between males and females.

A male cory catfish and a female cory catfish will usually look pretty similar. In some types of fish, there will be obvious differences, but most are so similar that it’ll be tough to tell.

Often, female cory catfish will have slightly more plump bodies than males. In certain types of cory catfish, the females will be longer than the males, too.

It’s a bit easier to tell males apart from females when viewing the fish from above. You’ll find that females are much wider than males when viewed from above.

You might notice that the male will have a larger dorsal fin as well. The anal fin of a male cory catfish should be more pointed than that of a female.

Other than that, there aren’t a lot of physical differences. Don’t feel bad if you’re having a hard time telling a male and a female apart.

The best thing to do is to look at the two fish from above to see if you can spot the physical differences. Hopefully, you’ll be able to determine which is which without it being a big deal.

Behavioral Differences

There aren’t a lot of behavioral differences that you need to know about. Males and females are both generally peaceful fish that like to hang out at the bottom of the fish tank.

Both males and females will swim in similar ways, too. There are some differences in behavior that will come to light when two fish are mating.

A female cory catfish will use its head to push the male’s body near its vent. This will form a sort of “T” shape.

You could use the mating behavior of the fish to tell the difference between them. Females will exhibit this behavior while males will not.

However, it’s going to be a lot easier to just wait and see the physical differences. The physical differences aren’t obvious at first, but females will be rounder than males.

It also gets more obvious when female cory catfish are getting ready to lay eggs. You should be able to figure things out based on that.

Is it Better to Own One Than Another?

Group of Cory Catfish

It isn’t going to be a good idea for you to buy just one cory catfish. These are fish that do much better when you keep them in a small group.

Since they’re sort of small fish, they’re going to feel a lot safer in your fish tank if they’re kept in a group. Keeping one alone or even just a pair of fish wouldn’t be the best situation.

Keeping males and females together will be fine. Both fish have calm temperaments and they won’t cause trouble in a fish tank.

To have an ideal experience, it’s recommended to keep six or more cory catfish in the same tank. This will ensure that the fish feel as safe as they can in your aquarium.

Since cory catfish are so peaceful, it’s going to be easy to keep them in community tanks. They don’t bother other fish, and you’ll just need to pick tank mates for the cory catfish that won’t harm them.

Pick tank mates that are compatible with cory catfish and you’ll have a very good time caring for these fish. They will be nice additions to a community aquarium.

How Long Will Cory Catfish Live?

Corydoras Feeding

Cory catfish can be considered to be a great choice for most freshwater aquariums. These fish aren’t overly hard to care for, but you do need to keep an eye on the water parameters.

When you care for these fish properly, they’ll be able to live for quite some time. On average, a cory catfish will be able to live between five and ten years.

Both males and females have the same average lifespan. If you make mistakes when caring for the fish, then that can shorten its lifespan.

For example, cory catfish that get stressed might not live for five years. If the fish are kept in groups that are too small, then they might get lonely and have a shorter lifespan than usual.

It’s important to do your best to care for these fish. Buy a small group of male and female cory catfish for your tank and things will work out nicely.

Final Thoughts

Telling the difference between male and female fish won’t always be easy. Cory catfish look very similar at first glance, and this might make you think that they’re the exact same.

There are differences, but the differences are subtle enough that most beginners will have trouble telling males and females apart. It’s easier if you look at the fish from above.

Female cory catfish are supposed to be a fair bit wider than males. They have rounder bodies, and that’s the best thing to pay attention to.

It’s also normal for female cory catfish to grow longer and larger than the males. As the fish grow older, it’ll likely be easier to tell them apart.

Now that you know how to go about identifying the sex of cory catfish, it’ll be easier to keep things straight. If you have friends or family members who own cory catfish and are struggling to identify the sex, then you can share what you learned today.