Aquarium Fish Gallery 4

Here you can join species that require huge aquariums, between 1000 and 8000 liters, the bigger the better! All deserve high water maintenance since they all produce lots of waste. Far from being a beginner fish!!! If you would like to keep some of these fishes, please do a huge research before purchasing it. Join responsible fish-keeping :-) !!!


Jaguar Cichlid

Cichlasoma managuense also known as Managua Cichlid.
This Central American cichlid grows to 55 cm. Single specimen needs to be kept in at least 500 liter tank. If kept with other community cichlids of similar size a 1000 liter is a minimum.
In the wild, the Jaguar cichlid is a skilled predator that feeds readily on fish and big invertebrates. Soft rayed fish is preferred, but the Jaguar cichlid is not fuzzy about its food. It will appreciate live food in the aquarium, but training it onto pellets is not difficult. Choose a high quality pellet that has been made to meet the nutritional needs of larger predator fish. If you do not produce your own live food, you should keep in mind that feeder fish from pet stores might introduce disease in the aquarium. Many Jaguar cichlid keepers therefore feed their Jaguar cichlids fish meat instead. Earthworms and krill are two other good choices.
Jaguar cichlid will prefer a pH between 7.0 and 8.7 . The recommended dH range is 10-15. The water temperature must be quite high in the aquarium, 25 - 36' C.
Photo by Dusko Bojic.


Giraffe Catfish

Auchenoglanis occidentalis
Found inhabiting swamps, ponds and ditches. They feed on insect larvae, earth worms, shrimps and small fish and can grow up to 45cm in length.
It is not to be trusted with smaller fish. In captivity to be fed with prepared catfish food and live food.
The distinctive brown-white pattering of this catfish resembles that of a giraffe. The Giraffe Catfish is active during the day when it searches the substrate for edible items. It requires a fine floor covering, bog-wood for retreats and over 2000 liter tank.
Photo by Dusko Bojic.

Six banded distichodus, Distichodus sexfasciatus

Originates from Congo river system, and from Lake Tanganyika. Very small specimens are usually quite peaceful and shoal together, but as they grow they tend to become more quarrelsome and as adults are best kept separately, unless you've got a huge tank.
D. sexfasciatus feeds on worms, insect larvae and plants. It generally leaves Java fern and Anubias alone, but will eat most other plants.
This characin will grow to 80 cm so beware!!! Minimum of 1500 liter tank is needed to house it.
Photo by Dusko Bojic.

Red Tailed Catfish

Phractocephalus Hemioliopterus
Juvenile Red Tails are often offered for sale as small as 1 to 2", and at this size they can be housed in as little as a 20 gallon aquarium. However, this set-up will not last long, as these fish grow very fast given proper feeding. You will soon be needing to upgrade to progressively larger and larger aquariums, ending up with something along the lines of 1500 to 2000 gallons. As you pick your jaw up off the floor, start rubbing your eyes and checking that you read that last line correctly, yes, I did say 1500 to 2000 gallons. This is not a fish for the faint of heart. Their natural habitat is the river basins of the Amazon and Orinoco Rivers, where these rivers are at their deepest and widest. As your Red Tail grows, the amount of decoration in your tank should decrease to give them as much manoeuvrability as possible. These are big fish and they do not turn in a small space. A hiding space should be provided; usually this is accomplished by using large ceramic drainpipe. Red Tails spend a lot of time lurking in their hidey-hole with only their barbels showing. Large rocks and pieces of driftwood are the usual decorations in a Red Tail tank, with many people also adding large fake plants to simulate a river bottom. These need to be very, very well secured. With their sheer bulk, these fish can dislodge almost anything given the chance.
Filtration is very important in a Red Tailed Catfish tank, even more so that with large cichlids. These catfish will regurgitate anything that they cannot digest and they can pollute their tank very quickly. This can lead to disaster, as Red Tails cannot tolerate dirty water. Regurgitation will also include the stomach acids, which will severely affect your water quality. Water changes are required on a regular basis, a minimum of once a week. Care should also be taken in adding anything to the tank that might fit in your fish's mouth, as they could be "sampled" to see if they are edible. As things that are not digestible will be vomited up again, eating odd items will not cause your catfish any major health problems, but these circumstances should be avoided wherever possible.
Red Tailed Catfish diet in the wild consists of fish, large crustaceans and, surprisingly, fruit. Very small juveniles should be fed twice a day and it is a good idea not to let them get used to live food at an early age. This will prevent problems with refusing other types of food later in life. Bloodworms, earthworms and good quality pellets or tablets designed for carnivorous catfish are a good staple diet when they are young. As larger juveniles, Red Tailed Catfish can be fed once a day with similar types of food. As they grow, their diet can be altered to include small shrimp and crabs, with the occasional treat of shellfish and beef heart. As adults, feeding should be done once or twice a week, with a period of fasting in between meals. At adult size, most Red Tails will ignore foods such as bloodworms and pellets as they are simply not large enough to satisfy their predatory appetites. At this stage, large portions of shrimp, crabs and beef heart are the best source of protein for these monsters. Feeders can be used for adult fish, but they will need to be of a larger size that those offered to large, predatory cichlids. More...
This is a part from the article, beautifully written by Tracey , published at
Photos by Dusko Bojic


African Lungfish

Lungfish have changed very little in appearance since they first evolve over 400 million years ago. They range in size from 60 to 200 cm. The African lungfish has two lungs which enables them to breath when the water has dried up. There are four African lungfish species. The Protopterus annectens, however is the most common in aquariums. Lungfish are carnivores and are best kept in their own tank. They are considered to be fearless and they will attack almost anything that moves, including the hands of humans. Lungfish are rarely imported and they may be considered illegal in some states. The Lungfish can survive in almost any type of water conditions, as well as an area that has a low supply of oxygen.
Although there is a very dry climate in Africa, the African lungfish is able to survive drought by "hibernation". The African lungfish digs itself into a mud hole and curls up in a chamber that is lined with mucus and breaths out of the mouth. During this time the mud hardens and the lungfish remains there until the next rainfall. However, sometimes this can be deadly for the lungfish, because the urine can poison its body. When it is time for spawning, males are said to have breathing in the form of threadlike appendages. The females lay their eggs in dug-out holes, while the male guard the eggs with all his might.
Their main diet consists of frogs and small fish.
Photos by Dusko Bojic

Silver arowana under threat !!!

The killing of mouthbrooding Silver arowana to remove their offspring and export them for the global aquarium trade may be placing the species under threat according to a new study. The Silver arowana, Osteoglossum bicirrhosum, is a paternal mouthbrooding osteoglossid fish that reaches a length of over 1m/39" and is one of South America's most popular food fish species. It is also of commercial importance to the aquarium industry and in 2001 the export of one million juvenile Silver arowana contributed around $560,000 to the rural poor of Peru, according to official records. However, the actual number of arowana exported could be as much as 20% higher.
According to a new study by Marie-Annick Moreau and Oliver Coomes of McGill University, which has just been published in the journal Oryx, the export of Silver arowanas in Peru has been on the rise for several years and the killing of reproductive males could threaten the sustainability of the fishery. Moreau and Coomes claim that the species' life-history characteristics, including the small number of offspring it produces, make it unsuited to the heavy exploitation it is facing from both the aquarium trade and the food fish industry. "Two osteoglossid species with similar biological traits are already listed on CITES to protect wild populations from collection for the aquarium and food fish trades", the authors wrote. "No similar international trade restrictions are in place for the Silver arowana, and little information is available on the status of wild populations in Peru or elsewhere in South America. Arapaima gigas is categorised as Data Deficient on the IUCN Redlist, but O. bicirrhosum has yet to be evaluated."
More research needed
The authors emphasise that determining whether the aquarium trade poses a threat to the species is challenging: "Research to determine whether stocks are declining, as seems likely given the current levels of offtake, would need to be conducted over several years and in different fishing areas, and would need to determine whether exploitation for the aquarium trade is the primary cause of any decline or whether other factors (eg. direct fishing for food, bycatch capture by other fisheries and habitat degradation/destruction) also act singly or jointly to reduce fishing yields."Moreau and Coombes suggest that guidance in the sustainable use of the Silver arowana fishery is needed, rather than an outright ban on the sale of the species, as there is an absence of supporting data on the conservation status of the species. "To ban the trade outright would deny an important source of income to the rural poor, destabilise an export economy that is estimated to directly employ up to 14,000 people in Peru and that provides important foreign earnings to Amazonian countries, and would probably shift exploitation to other vulnerable Amazonian aquarium fish species, such as river stingrays."

Silver arowana
Common name: Silver arowana, Arahuana, Aruana, Arrowana, Arawana
Scientific name: Osteoglossum bicirrhosum (Cuvier, 1829)
Size: Adults can reach up to 1m/39" in large aquariums.
Diet: A surface dwelling predator that feeds on fish, insects, spiders, birds and bats.

Reproduction: A paternal mouthbrooder. The fish spawns during the dry season when water levels are low. The male holds a small clutch of large eggs in a brood pouch in his mouth and broods the larval fish for a further three weeks. At a size of 3-4cm the fish are released to allow them to feed but return to the male's mouth if danger threatens. The fish leave the mouth at an age of 4-6 weeks when they measure around 10cm/4" in length. The species reaches sexual maturity after two years.
Availability: Many Silver arowana are wild caught and are imported mainly from Brazil and Peru. However, the species is also produced in captivity.
Article by Matt Clarke
Photo by Dusko Bojic.

Red-bellied Pacu

Colossoma macropomum
The Red-bellied Pacu is a tall, laterally compressed fish that looks very similar to, and is often confused with its cousin, the Red-bellied piranha. The lower jaw of the Piranha is a little bit more out, than the Pacu's, and the Pacu is a vegetarian, whereas the piranha is carnivorous. Like the Piranha, the Red-bellied Pacu is a gray or silvery fish with red on its belly. The Pacu's lower body fins are also red. Pacu will also grow substantially larger than the Piranha. This fish belongs to the only genus of fish with true molars (teeth). The Red-bellied Pacu is also known as the Black Pacu, the Giant Pacu, and the Tambaqui.
Males have a more intense red color to the belly than females.
Pacus diet is formed out of fruits, grains, fish, zoo-plankton, insects, snails, and decaying plants (algae/weeds).
The Red-bellied Pacu is usually solitary. This species lives in waterways running through heavily forested areas subject to annual flooding. The adults may remain in the flooded forests during first 5 months of flooding. The Red-bellied Pacu uses its molars to crack open Brazil nuts, a favored food item.
Male Red-bellied Pacus become sexually mature at around age 3 and females around age 4. Female Pacus lay smooth, spherical eggs that are then fertilized by the male. The eggs are not guarded prior to hatching. Young and juvenile Pacus live in black waters of flood plains until they become sexually mature. Pacus quickly grow to a very large size. They can reach up to 110cm in length. Pacus are not to be kept in home aquariums!!! (see pictures for further explanation)

Photos by Dusko Bojic.


Giant Puffer Fish

Tetraodon Mbu.
A carnivorous freshwater puffer fish that originate from the middle and lower sections of the Congo river in Africa, as well as parts of Lake Tanganyika. It is not sensible, however, to keep these fish with other puffer fish or semi-aggressive fish.
The "puffing" behavior usually occurs when the fish is in danger or stressed, it is therefore not advisable to encourage the fish to 'puff up' on purpose.
It is also dangerous for the fish to 'puff up' with air and so it should only be caught in a volume of water rather than netted. When handling the fish (also not recommended unless absolutely necessary), latex gloves should be worn by the handler since the spines on the fishes skin contain the neurotoxin Tetraodotoxin.
Unlike many other freshwater puffer fish, the Tetraodon Mbu does not benefit from being kept in brackish conditions. It should be kept in a large tank with a clean supply of freshwater with a pH range between 7.0 and 8.0 and a temperature of 24 to 26 degrees C. The water hardness in the tank should be 10 to 12dH.
They are very sensitive to levels of ammonia nitrite and nitrates, so depending on the eating habits and size of aquarium it is highly recommended to regularly conduct 30% water changes every 7 days. One should also remove uneaten pieces of food left in the aquarium.
Remember, whilst the juvenile Mbu may look cute in the aquarium store, they usually grow to 75cm.
It is important to feed a mixture of food to the Mbu not only to ensure they receive plenty of vitamins and minerals, but also eat food sources that contain bones so as to maintain the puffer's beak (teeth). In the wild, Mbu regularly feed on freshwater shellfish such as mussels, and so the beak continues to grow throughout its life to compensate for the abrasive effect of eating shellfish. Thus, if the puffer is fed on a diet of only soft foods, the beak will eventually give the puffer an overbite and prevent it from eating any food.

Photo by Dusko Bojic

Red-bellied Piranha

Pygocentrus nattereri
This fresh-water carnivore have the reputation of being one of the most ferocious freshwater fish in the world. Their short jaws certainly are very powerful and lined with razor sharp teeth, well able to take a chunk of flesh out of much larger fish. As their name suggests they have a reddish tinge to the belly. They grow to a maximum of 33 cm and a weight of 3.5 kg.
These fish form big shoals. They predominantly eat other fish but myth suggests they will attack any creature, whatever the size, if it is injured or struggling in the water.
These fish have a very good sense of hearing, using a special line of sensors down the sides of the their bodies, called the lateral line system. This enables them to find struggling prey in murky water.
Piranha originate from Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela.
Photos by Dusko Bojic.

Tiger catfish

Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum
As the name suggests, these catfish have bold stripey and blotchy markings along their sides, in shades of bronze and brown. Like other catfish they have a series of sensitive whiskers or barbels that surround the mouth and allow catfish to search out their prey after dark, or in very cloudy water. The eyes are small, also indicating that this is a species that relies less on sight and more on other senses. These fish can grow to 130 cm.
Tiger catfish live in river channels and areas of flooded forest in the Amazon and Orinoco river basins, where they patrol the bottom looking for food. They are most active after dark, spending their days well hidden under stones or logs.
Tiger catfish spawn in January. The eggs are fertilised as they are shed into the water. A single female can produce millions of eggs: over 150,000 eggs per kilo of her body weight. Juvenile fish spend more time in flooded forests where, in amongst the branches and roots, they are safer from predators.
This fresh-water carnivore originates from Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Peru and Venezuela.
Photos by Dusko Bojic.

Giant Gourami

Osphronemus goramy
Gouramis live in shallow weed-choked pools, where oxygen is sometimes in short supply. Being able to breathe mouthfuls of air is very useful in these conditions. They feed on the weed itself and almost anything that lives amongst it like fish, frogs, etc.
The males are usually aggressive towards each other. They may engage in violent fights as seen in Siamese Fighting Fish, or highly ritualised aggression, with the so-called 'kiss' of a Kissing Gourami.
When Gourami's are ready to breed, they build a nest of plants at the surface of the water suspended with bubbles. The eggs are guided in, then after about two weeks the fry leave the nest.
Giant Gourami originate from Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand. They reach the size of about 70cm.
Photos by Dusko Bojic.