Catfish is a typical species of stagnant or slow-flowing waters characterized by a soft and muddy seabed. It is also able to adapt to extreme conditions, in warm and low-oxygen water. For these reasons, as well as for the sapidity of its meat, it is bred in extensive fish farming ponds.
Originally from North America, catfish was introduced in Italy in the early 1900s. Once widespread and common throughout the river Po basin, it has subsequently undergone some downsizing during the 90s, due to a viral disease that caused a significant reduction of this species, both in natural environment and breeding. Currently, catfish is expanding in the waters of the region and is locally highly valued among fishermen. Lastly, its presence contributes to the containment of invasive and harmful species of which it nourishes.