Saddled Bichir

Discussion in 'Oddball Fish' started by pepetj, Apr 16, 2010.

  1. pepetj

    pepetjWell Known MemberMember

    I rescued two juveniles (around 6 1/2 to 6 3/4" SL) Polypterus endlicheri endlicheri. Most probably wild caught, from Niger.

    They are quite skinny since they were badly cared for (the guy at LFS was feeding them once a week so go figure).

    I placed them in a 5.5gal I had "full" of Red Cherry Shrimp since I need to induce them into eating. I saw a few pics of them as healthy adults and they look great.

    This pics I took in the LFS.

    Santo Domingo

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    Last edited: Apr 16, 2010
  2. sirdarksol

    sirdarksolFishlore LegendMember

    Cool fish. Hopefully they pull through.
    I just looked them up, they get absolutely huge! They'll definitely be interesting additions to your collection. :)
  3. Tony G.

    Tony G.Fishlore VIPMember

    mighty cool! hope you can bring them back to health!
  4. OP

    pepetjWell Known MemberMember

    They could grow up to 32" -maybe more- in captivity. I'll design a custom built shallow yet long tank for them. They aren't active fish. They don't require much swimming space. A 6 footer that is 24" wide with 8 to 12" height of water column should do it.

    I have room in my internal patio at my office for them. I intend to keep my other oddball fish, the West African Lung fish at my new place since all in the family love him/her.

    Santo Domingo
  5. sirdarksol

    sirdarksolFishlore LegendMember

    Sounds like a good setup for such a fish. I'll eventually have an aquarium with the space for a large fish (and not stock it with fish so small that they'll be known only as "lunch").
  6. haji4

    haji4Valued MemberMember

    They are nice fish. I really enjoy the bichirs. Mine is so funny and he like to stand up to all of the other fish. I want to find mine a friend.
  7. platy ben

    platy benWell Known MemberMember

    Hmm, I've seen that fish become a lot more common in my LFS, but they label it as a dragon reed fish or something, is it the same fish?
    Great looking fish!
  8. OP

    pepetjWell Known MemberMember

    To avoid common mislabeling, I would ask for the latin name. If it start with Polypterus you have yourself a bichir. This same fellows are sometimes named as Dinosaur Bichir, Dragon Bichir but I believe those labels are used for other Polypterus species as well.

    There are between 12 to 16 species of Polypterus to date.

    These two specimens I got were mislabaled as P lapradei but after checking with my new friend and Bichir expert, Mr Hao, a 14 years old boy from China, I know I have Polypterus endlicheri endlicheri, likely wild caught, from Niger River.

    Note that most of the Bichirs are nocturnal. They will likely just stay put during daytime. Great if you want a somewhat quiet tank.

    I love mine. I wish I could get some more.

    Santo Domingo
  9. bolivianbaby

    bolivianbabyFishlore LegendMember

    He's beautiful Pepe!

  10. OP

    pepetjWell Known MemberMember

    One of them went on hunger strike for a couple of days. Tonight I fed just after lights off time began, I tossed a piece of Tilapia filet and both went for it! Each Bichir grabbed an end and went crazy. They detached one Anubias barteri, a bit of substrate storm, they even broke the Java moss they used to hide underneath.

    This creatures are great to watch feeding. I'm doing every other day 50% water change since I have them in a mature but quite small tank.

    I'm working on the design of a custom built 5footer for them (60"L x 24"W x 16"H).

    Santo Domingo
  11. btate617

    btate617Well Known MemberMember

    Nice pick up Pepe.

    Good luck with them.