Elephant fishes or mormyrids are very interesting and also entertaining fish. They communicate among themselves with electrical signals and have – similar to birds – a relatively well developed cerebellum. Their bizzare body shape makes them additionally interesting. However, they have little to offer in terms of color, mostly coming along in shades of brown and black, broken up by dull white or light gray.
The most colorfully attractive mormyrid, additionally equipped with a “proboscis”, is Campylomormyrus tamandua, at least as a juvenile. The species is widespread in western Africa (drainages of the rivers Volta, Niger, Shari (including Lake Chad) and Congo) and can become stately 40 cm long, but even in the wild it is very rare to see animals larger than 15-20 cm. Very old animals darken and lose almost all markings.
Since a few years we can offer this fish as offspring from Indonesia. Campylomormyrus tamandua are not very compatible with each other, in a group there is constant chasing and fighting. In principle not much happens, because mormyrids do not have teeth, but in the long run the bickering can lead to losses. If you only have a medium sized aquarium, you can therefore only keep a single animal. Against other fish (no mormyrids) C. tamandua is peaceful.
The key to successful group keeping is as large a group as possible (at least 10, better 20 or more specimens), as large an aquarium as possible, plenty of hiding places, and abundant feeding. Bloodworm (frozen or live) are particularly suitable as food. Spawning takes place in crevices, the animals do not practice brood care. The sexes are indistinguishable in juveniles, sexually mature females are fuller and the anal fin shape of males and females is different. But it should be emphasized again: keeping them in pairs is not possible.
For our customers: the animals have code 110111 on our stocklist. Please note that we supply exclusively to wholesalers.
Text & photos: Frank Schäfer