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October 24: Arrival of New Fresh Water Fish.

October 24: Arrival of New Marine Water Fish.


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Cuvierís bichiris abn

Cuvierís bichiris abn

Scientific Name: polypterus senegalus

Price: Upon Request

Origin: Africa

Family: Polypteridae


Other Names: Dinosaur Eel, Dragonfin Polypterus, Senegal Bichi



Technical Info

Temperature: 24 - 28 ℃

pH: 6.2 - 7.8

GH: 5 - 20

Max size: 50 cm

Min Tank size: 400 Ltr

Position in Aqua: Middle swimmer



The Senegal Bichir, Polypterus senegalus, also known as the Gray Bichir and Cuvier's Bichir, is sometimes called the "dinosaur eel" at many local pet chains - a misnomer, as the creature is not an eel. It is a fish, a prototypical species of the Polypterus genus, meaning most of its features are held across the genus.



Predatory fish. Meaty foods such as prawn and white fish will be readily accepted. Also live or frozen foods such as bloodworm and brineshrimp. P. senegalus will sometimes accept good quality cichlid pellets.



This species breeds during the rainy season in nature and changes in the temperature and chemistry of the water are likely to induce spawning behaviour. A large tank is required and should contain soft, slightly acidic water. It is an egg scatterer and therefore areas of dense planting and/or spawning mops should be provided. Courtship involves chasing and nudging of the female by the male. During spawning itself, the male receives the eggs from the female by cupping his anal and caudal fins around her genitals. He then fertilises the eggs before scattering them amongst vegetation. At this point, the adult fish should be removed as they may predate upon the eggs. The eggs hatch in 3-4 days, with the fry becoming free swimming around 3 days later. First foods should be brine shrimp nauplii or microworm. Apparently the fry are not particularly mobile, so care should be exercised to ensure they are well fed.


Compatible with

Not to be trusted with tankmates it can fit in its mouth but is relatively peaceful otherwise. Suitable tankmates include other Polypterus species, Synodontis, Datnoides, Knife Fish, larger Ctenopoma species, medium to large characins and African Butterfly Fish.