IUCN threat status:

Critically Endangered (CR)


Read full entry

Giant pangasius

Not to be confused with Mekong giant catfish.

The giant pangasius, Paroon Shark[1] or Chao Phraya giant catfish (Pangasius sanitwongsei) is a species of freshwater fish in the shark catfish family (Pangasiidae) of order Siluriformes, found in the Chao Phraya and Mekong basins in Indochina. Its populations have declined drastically, mainly due to overfishing, and it is now considered Critically Endangered.[1]

Physical characteristics[edit]

Giant pangasius in Prague Sea aquarium

The giant pangasius is pigmented with dusky melanophores. It has a wide, flat, whiskerless head. It has a silver, curved underside and a dark brown back. Its dorsal, pectoral and pelvic fins are dark gray and the first soft ray is extended into a filament. Full-grown adults can reach 300 centimetres (9.8 ft) SL in length and weigh up to 300 kg (660 lb).[2]


The giant pangasius is a benthopelagic and migratory species. Juveniles and adults feed on crustaceans and fishes. These fish typically spawn just prior to the monsoon season.[2]

Relationship to humans[edit]

Fishing of this species used to be accompanied by religious ceremonies and rites. It is often mentioned in textbooks, news media, and popular press. This fish is a popular food fish and marketed fresh.[2]

These fish sometimes appear in the aquarium fish hobby. Most specimens do not reach their full size without an extremely large aquarium or pond. There is even a "balloon" form of this fish where the fish has an unusually short and stocky body.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Jenkins, A., Kullander, F.F. & Tan, H.H. (2007). Pangasius sanitwongsei. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 2009-11-24.
  2. ^ a b c Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2012). "Pangasius sanitwongsei" in FishBase. February 2012 version.


Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Source: Wikipedia

Belongs to 1 community


EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.

To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!