dinosaur bichir

All Things to Know Before You Buy Dinosaur Bichir (Informations & Facts)

Dinosaur Bichir – The Senegal Bichir, likewise referred to as the Cuvier’s Bichir, Gray Bichir, Dinosaur Bichir or Dragonfin, belongs to the Polypteridae, or Lobe-Finned Pike family.

This surface-breathing fish has an elongated body and resembles the Reedfish, other than that it has pelvic fins, whereas Reedfish do not.

The Dinosaur Bichir must be kept in a densely grown aquarium with rocks, driftwood, as well as a soft substrate.

A community aquarium with larger fish is well matched for this fish as long as the fish tank is huge sufficient and also not jammed.

Congestion with various other fish or other Senegal Bichirs could cause this fish to become territorial, aggressive, and also eat various other fish.

It has the tendency to leave from the fish tank, so make use of a tight-fitting lid.



An elongated snake-like prehistoric-looking fish with numerous small dorsal finlets, a broad head and also large mouth.

Pectoral fins are paddle-like as well as will vary in size as a result of careful breeding. Bichirs appear to “walk” with these huge, muscular fins.

The “longfin” range is normally smaller sized in dimension with bigger fins.

The Dinosaur Bichir can vary from a pale silver-gray to a light golden brownish with even some yellow fin highlights in color.

Coloration will vary because of substrate color, diet plan, temperature level, and also water conditions.



  • Usual name: Senegal Bichir, Cuvier’s Bichir, Dinosaur Bichir
  • Scientific name: Polypterus Senegalus


Typical Grownup Fish Dimension 16.5 inches/ 42 centimeters


  • Location of Beginning: Senegal, Africa
  • Biotope:
    Plants ladden, marshy waters in Central and West Africa. Lake Oguta, Imo State, Nigeria. The Dinosaur Bichir is a native species of this lake.

Tank Setup

*) Regular Container Setup:


A well decorated fish tank with well rooted as well as over hanging plants is valued as Bichirs are generally nighttime and also do not such as bright lighting.

The base of the plants have to be secured by rockwork however, other smart a huge Bichir will eventually root out as well as damage them.

Offer plenty of collapse the form of rockwork as well as bog/wood/driftwood together with tool to medium-fine sand or crushed rock as a substratum.

*) Suggested Minimum Fish Tank Ability

  • 120 gallon/ 480 litre. Select a fish tank with large and long base measurements over a high storage tank of the very same capability.
  • Ideal Storage tank Size is 55+ gallons

*) Atmosphere Specifics


Need to have a roomy tank with exceptional filtering. Likes a sandy substrate with plenty of concealing areas.

A safe cover is a has to as this fish is a known escape. They like acidic water.

  • Temperature: 74– 82 Deg F/ 23– 28 Deg C.
  • Water chemistry: pH 6.2– 8.0.



All Dinosaur Bichirs are relatively serene with other fish that are as well big as well eat.

They will certainly eat others of their very own kind given the chance though, so various other Bichir tankmates ought to be close to the very same size.

Occasionally Bichirs will squabble among themselves over food, however seldom is any type of damage done.



Most Dinosaur Bichir will adjust to your feeding schedule, but they are mostly nocturnal feeders.

Feeding prior to lights out is frequently a great idea, especially if your Bichir appears shy, or really slow to consume.

Feed meaningful online foods such as black worms, blood worms, as well as earthworms together with frozen foods such as salt water shrimp, mysis shrimp, and beef heart.

Dried foods are not constantly approved, yet eventually most Bichirs will accept a top quality pellet, tablet, or stick that is suitable to their size

Feed once daily!



Although lots of Dinosaur Bichirs have been raised to sex-related maturity, little is understood on the breeding.

It is stated that the men Rectal fin is bigger compared to the women. Men start spawning, the women laying a couple of hundred eggs near his hand-like rectal fin.

Young hatch out in concerning four days. A water alter with slightly cooler water could promote the spawning.

Get rid of any kind of eggs to a rearing container as well as feed with infant salt water shrimp moving on to the bigger food as they expand. The young have exterior gills.



Senegalus, like other members of the species Polypterus, are usually a non-aggressive bottom-dwelling killer.

They could show agression towards other Bichirs over territory, as well as will take advantage of anything that will suit a Senegalus’ mouth but are otherwise a docile enhancement to a storage tank with similar-sized fish.

Lighting is not necessary for this fish, they favor a poorly lit atmosphere with plenty of dark hiding locations.

Polypterus Senegalus is the most active of all Polypterus.

Sound Production


P.Senegalus as well as P.retropinnis were examined as well as located to earn two unique sounds. A thumping noise as well as a moan.
The auto mechanics are uncertain right now.



Happened throughout close encounters by conspecifics one or both would raise their dorsal fins as well as give off thumps the audio energy was greatest between 100-200z with a maximum rate of 3 thumps each second and also decreasing as one conspecific removaled away from the various other.

Moans can be heard even without technical equipment as conspecifics swam quickly away from eachother or were stunned.

Additionally reported makings the same audios( however not studied) are P. endlicheri, P.palmas polli, and P. ornatipinnis.

Dinosaur Bichir Facts ?


1. Did you know Dinosaur Bichir could be traced back some 96 million years but are believed to be also older.

2. Dinosaur Bichir have 2 plate-like frameworks on the bottom of their reduced jaw; these are referred to as ‘gular plates’ and also are thicker bony frameworks which help the Bichir in crushing food.

3. The Bowfin (Family Amiidae) also has this framework in the form of a solitary large gular plate, also utilized for compressing food.

5 Did you recognize until the last couple of years all Dinosaur Bichir were wild caught?

6. While the sex of Bichirs could be identified at 7-9 inches, Some varieties could not be sexually fully grown till 6 years old.

7. While the ranges of Lepisosteidae varieties( Gars) could look the same they do not have the middle dentine layer existing in Polypterids as well as Amiidae.

8. Did you know a lot of Bichirs originate from a band across Africa along adhering to the equator from 10 levels north to 10 levels southern of it?

9. Did you recognize ladies are generaly larger compared to males?

10. Importation or possesion is forbidden in Hawaii.

11. Inning accordance with the USGSa few specimens of Polypterus delhezi have actually been caught in SE Florida.

12. Usage dorsally placed spiracle to exhale (not inhale like skates and also rays)( Ichthyology Springtime 1999 T. Turner Lecture 12).

13. A nation in Africa( Ivory Coast) had a Polypterus endlicheri on a stamp in 1986.

14. Polypterus Senegalus, the longnose gar (Lepisosteus osseus) and also the bowfin (Amia calva) had gulonolactone oxidase task in the kidney as well as therefore can manufacture ascorbic acid (VITAMIN C) (Journal of Fish BiologyVolume 57 Concern 3 Page 733 – September 2000).

Polypterid Fossil Record


The polypterid fossil record was for a long period of time reduced to some limited, disarticulated bones, generally scales, found in different African down payments covering a larger area than the real geographical circulation.

With the exploration, on one hand, of polypterid scales, vertebrae, dermal bones of the cranium and also dorsal spiny rays in South The U.S.A.

On the other hand, of scales as well as numerous dorsal spiny rays in Niger as well as Sudan, as well as two expressed fossils in Morocco, the story of the polypteriformes has actually revealed a few of its secrets.

The exploration of isopedine between dentine and bony basic plate in the ranges of living as well as fossil polypterid types is taken into consideration a synapomorphy of the team.

It had been a crucial aid in differentiating polypterid scales from other ganoid scales( Fish as well as Fisheries Volume 2.

Getting Dinosaur Bichirs


There are basicly three methods to purchase Dinosaur Bichirs

  1. Linger wishing your favorite shop obtains some in.
  2. Ask if they can purchase them from their suppliers most excellent shops can be really accomodating this way.
  3. Online there are variety of suppliers.The drawback to this and the above is someones selecting.
    your fish or you.

This claimed allows state you discovered a shop with a number of Bichirs of the very same varieties just what do you look for.

  1. Clear eyes.
  2. All fins existing,( pectoral, pelvic, anal.and dorsal finlets).
  3. No noticable fungal or parasitical troubles.
  4. Seek one thats much more energetic compared to the others.
  5. Make sure it mouth is fine and nostrils (2) exist.
  6. Color or pattern.

And ask a couple questions how much time have they been in the store?

This can be very important. Most Bichirs are wild-collected, lots of by indigenous plant poisons, others thru capturing and commonly starved before shipping in crowded, suspicious conditions.

Some won’t make it sorry to say, most that are not going to will certainly die within a week or two.

The best method to guarantee your fish will certainly is to wait that 2 weeks either location it on hold or see to it existed that 2 week period.

Other concerns are they consuming? and also exactly what are they being fed?

Aclimating new fish


Depending on how you acquired your brand-new Senegal Bichir aclimating can be done two various ways.

If purchased localy you can just float the bag to match the tempurature you likewise need to readjust the fish to the brand-new water chemistry.

This could be done after the temp is matched open the bag and slowly include the brand-new tanks water to the bag over the next hour or 2.

This will allow the fish to adapt to its new water chems slowly, avoiding whats known as PH shock and is one of one of the most usual causes of fatality to freshly acquired fish.

If purchased online as well as lenghty shipping is involved theres a second way to aclimate your brand-new fish.

It is called dripping. Dripping is generally done with an airline tubing.

Firstly you clear the fish from the bag into a tiny bucket than take precautions to prevent fish from jumping out as well as provide aeration as needed.

You siphon water from your tank into the container with the airline tube.

As soon as a stable circulation is accomplished you then knot the tubing close to the outlet to ensure that the water flow is restricted as well as decreased to a trickle.

This could be permitted to run anywhere from 30 minuites to 3 hrs, while in the container this is the time think about.

Prophylactic treatment


Exactly what is it?

Basically its a preventative step, Its objective is to avoid any kind of disease or parasitc transmission between newly aquired fish as well as well established tankmates.


Should it be taken into consideration?

well when it comes to Bichirs considering that many species are still wild captured they may nurture parasitic microorganisms it is for this reason a prophylactic treatments may be thought about.

What’s involved?

Salt Bath

  1. Initially, give them a prophylactic salt bath right in the transfer container.
  2. Separately liquify 5 tbsps of table salt (NaCl) each gallon of water.
  3. Add 1/3 the service to the transfer bucket,
  4. wait 10 minutes as well as add another 1/3 delay 10 mins add the other 1/3.
  5. Watch on the new fish and also get rid of any kind of at the initial signs of distress.
  6. Leave them covered in the bucket for a further 15 to 30 minutes.

Many public aquaiums commonly use a saltwater dip for all their brand-new freshwater arrivals, at pure salinity (35 parts each thousand), for ten minutes.

A significant tip is that common salt (NaCl) does not affect the pH barrier, yet “Marine” salt as well as supposed “Fish tank” salt do.

A change in pH, as opposed to the salt itself, make up a lot of the stress in a salt dip, If your fish do reveal severe stress you would certainly eliminate it, Net them out and also transfer them to the Q Storage tank.

With any luck they should have left behind most of or all their exterior bloodsuckers.( this will not get rid of encysted parasites).

After that, offer the new kid on the blocks 24 to 48 hours to settle.

Give them time to recoup from anxieties, get some shade, and also get their respiration price back to typical, while you analyze them.

Additional Info


Constantly see to it the aquarium is firmly covered without open holes or ways of getaway.

Bichirs are untidy eaters, so offer excellent filtering and also constant partial water adjustments to maintain excellent water high quality.

Despite the fact that they are lower residents, they need to be able to surface area when they feel like it.

This is since they take a breath oxygen from the air also.

Always make certain that your Dinosaur Bichir has sufficient area to rise for a fresh breath of air.

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