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Rope Fish

Erpetoichthys calabaricus

Stock Level: 0

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Details -

Natural Range: West Africa, ours are from Nigeria

Source: Harvested from Nature

Estimated Size at Shipping: 6"-10"

Max Size: 15". According to the USF&W article on this species, the maximum recorded length in captivity is just under 15". This article points out that the commonly stated size of 36" in the literature stems from an article written in 1984, and is an error.

Overview: These are unique in the truest sense of the word. Ropefish are the only species in their genus. Closely related to the Bichirs of the Polypterus genus, baby ropefish also have external gills. The gills disappear as the fish grow. Ropefish have modified their swimbladder into an effective "lung" and rely on atmospheric air to the point that they will reportedly drown if denied access to the water's surface to breathe.

Setup Considerations: These fish are secretive by nature and are built to exist in tight spaces. They need lots of caves and crevices, nooks and crannies in which they can live and explore. Dense plants will also help them feel at home.

Specific Care Requirements: While these are very hardy fish, they are also fairly docile. They have poor eyesight and rely on their acute sense of smell to locate food. This makes them fairly slow to locate their food, and they will be outcompeted if kept by species which are food aggressive. While they can be housed with other species, they tankmates should be picked with care based on temperament and eating habits.

Diet: Peaceful Carnivore: These are not picky eaters. They will readily consume most standard aquarium fare from the bottom of the aquarium We tend to stick with pellets, wafers, Vibra Bites, frozen and live foods, avoiding flakes and other foods which fall apart too quickly and make a mess. While generally peaceful, ropefish will hunt and eat small fish at night, so best to keep them with appropriately sized tank mates.

Ratings & Reviews:

Location: Wyoming, United States

Shipping: Please review checkout for final shipping options based on items selected, quantity, and groupings. Heat or cold packs will be included as needed at no extra cost.

  • UPS Next Day Medium: Fits 5 for $45.99
  • UPS Next Day Large: Fits 7 for $49.99
  • UPS Next Day Giant: Fits 18 for $69.99
  • UPS Next Day Small: Fits 1 for $39.99

Find details about our shipping process in our FAQ. For example, we ship most orders on the following Monday or Wednesday.