Elephantnose Fish

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Gnathonemus petersii - (Günther, 1862)
Elephantnose Fish

Fascinating fish, but not easily kept in the aquarium. JJPhoto.dk

[edit] Overview

A curious fish, but one that often fails to thrive in home aquariums. It has an electric organ at the base of its tail and discharges mild shock waves when searching for live prey and communicating with other Elephantnoses.

Best reserved for experienced aquarists.

Family: Mormyridae

Other common name(s):

  • Elephantfish, Elephantnose
  • Baby Whale

Native range:

Habitat: Soft bottoms of rivers and streams.

Maximum length: 35 cm (14 in)

Minimum aquarium size: 209 L (55 gal)

Water: Freshwater 22 °C (295 K, 72 °F) - 28 °C (301 K, 82 °F)

General swimming level: Bottom to midwater.

[edit] Feeding

Mostly feeds at night, grazing in soft substrates with its long proboscis hunting for live worms, insects, and crustaceans.

[edit] Aquarium Compatibility

Can be scrappy toward its own kind, but some keepers recommend assembling schools of three to five or more in a large aquarium devoted to this group.

[edit] Breeding/Propagation

Not reported in captivity. Some family members are known to make spawning migrations in tune with seasonal flooding in the wild.

Reference: 101 Best Tropical Fishes
Image credit: JJ
Text credit: KW
Facts about Elephantnose FishRDF feed
Common name Elephantnose Fish  +, Elephantfish, Elephantnose  +, and Baby Whale  +
Family Mormyridae  +
Genus Gnathonemus  +
Image credit JJ  +
Maximum length 14 in  +
Minimum aquarium size 55 gal  +
Native range Africa  +, Congo River  +, and Niger River  +
Reference 101 Best Tropical Fishes  +
Specific name petersii  +
Swimming level Bottom to midwater.  +
Text credit KW  +
Water max temp 301 K (28 °C, 82 °F)  +
Water min temp 295 K (22 °C, 72 °F)  +
Water type Freshwater  +