Unfortunately, Planet Catfish is not an entire spherical mass floating in space inhabited soley by scaley piscines, or a campy b-movie. But planetcatfish.com is a pretty nifty, very useful website devoted entirely to all species of catfish. And that's more useful than you'd think. As Mark Twain said, and their splash page (no pun intended) quotes, "the catfish is a plenty good enough fish for anyone".

The "cat-elog" is probably the most used feature of the site. It documents every species of catfish known to man, fully searchable, and cross-references by scientific and common name. Each page offers information on the maximum size of the fish, preferred temperature and pH, native habitat, spawning habits (if known), diet, and any other information possible. Most importantly, each page has a large collection of photos of that species, submitted by fishermen and aquarium hobbyists who've worked with the animal in question. The cat-elog can also be browsed by genus and family.

It is an exceptional resource for looking up plecostomus species, in particular, since many of them are only accurately identified by an "L-number" instead of an agreed-on common name. While there are three or four species that are commonly called the zebra pleco, most of them are fairly common and retail for about $30-50. If you ask a store for a "zebra pleco" you're likely to get one of those. But the "true" zebra pleco, a rare species no longer exported due to conservation issues and difficult to breed in captivity, retails for easily $200-300 apiece and are a catfish hobbyist's dream. The only way to make sure everyone is talking about the same "zebra" is by its number--L046.

There is also a "catfish of the month" feature, with an in-depth profile of a new species every month, a "book reviews" section, forum, links, resources, and more. Planet catfish is an excellent resource if you just want to know a little more about your common pleco or cory, or are looking for something new, rare, wild, and wonderful.

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