Retropinnis Bichir


The Retropinnis Bichir is also known as the West African or Speckled Bichir and originates from the Congo basin, Africa. As with other members of the primitive Polypteridae family, the Retropinnis Bichir has the unique ability to survive out of water. With a lung-like paired swim bladder and gills to help breathing, the Retropinnis Bichir can spend short periods of time on land, but must soon return to its water environment for adequate respiration. This species is snakelike in shape with a tapered, blunt head and is a yellowish brown in color with many dark patches that extend from the dorsal fin into the body of the fish.

The Retropinnis Bichir does best in a large "oddball" aquarium with other large, passive fish. When provided with plenty of open swimming areas, rocks and crevices, the Retropinnis Bichir is not usually aggressive toward tank mates. This species is semi-aggressive in the fact that they will swallow any fish or invertebrate that they can fit into their mouth, but they are very passive towards other large fish. Be sure to provide an aquarium of more than 100 gallons if incorporating another Bichir with the Retropinnis. Prone to jumping, a tight, well-sealed aquarium lid is required.

Eggs are deposited on clumps of vegetation; however, breeding in the hobbyist's aquarium setting is not common.

A carnivorous fish, the Retropinnis Bichir requires live food in its diet as well as chopped meats and beef heart.

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