This is a very large species that should be purchased only by aquarists who can provide it with appropriate accommodation. The strong thorny spines on its body plates and powerful fin spines also mean that it must be handled with care. However, although the Black Doradid is extremely large, it is not aggressive toward other fish of a similar size.
No piece about the characoids would be complete without mentioning some of the larger, more specialized fishes. Of these, the piranhas have a worldwide reputation. They belong to the family Serrasalmidae, which includes not only the carnivorous piranhas but also some large, peaceful herbivores.
Distichodus species are well known as plant eaters, but this should not deter you from trying to keep them at one time or another. All seem happy in water conditions of about 10-20 dH, neutral to slightly acid, and a temperature of 23-2 7°C (73-81°F) is suitable.
Doradids are usually called talking catfishes due to the noise they can make, but they are not the only catfishes to employ noise as a form of communication. Doradids achieve this in two main ways. One method is to stridulate the pectoral fin joint by partially locking it while moving the fin spine. This movement need not be great to make a lot of noise.