Macrognathus meklongensis

1. December 2009

We were able to import for the first time one of the smallest and most beautiful species of spiny eel: Macrognathus meklongensis from Thailand.This charming species becomes hardly 15 cm long and only as thick as a forefinger.

The coloration differs very much depending on mood. The basic colour is a nice golden bonze, the fins become yellow-red when the fish feels good, below the dorsal fin (which has black stripes) are small ocelli (eye-spots).

The species is very peaceful against tankmates, may the belong to the own species or other ones. Very small fish will  be eaten, but the spiny eel is not a predator at all. It mainly feeds on small invertebrates, especially moscito larvae and bloodworm, which are also readily taken when frozen. If you have the opportunity to feed live waterflees, you should not miss it! It is really funny to observe how the spiny eels, bringing their body in a S-shape figure (this looks a bit like a seahorse), pick the flees out of the water column.

Regarding water parameters the spiny eels are totally undemanding. Water temperature should be between 22 and 28°C. It is necessary to furnish the aquarium with many caves and other hiding places during the phase of settling in, but after that phase the spiny eels will be visible very often. It is of great importance to cover the tank completely, for spiny eels are real masters of escape.

For our customers: the animals have code 425164 on our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively supply to the wholesale market.

Lexicon: Macrognathus: from ancient Greek, means “with large jaws”. meklongensis: originating from the Meklong river.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer