Among the most beautiful anabantoids or labyrinth fish from Africa is Ctenopoma acutirostre, the Leopard bushfish. It can become 15-20 cm long. Its natural habitat is the Congo. It is collected there for the ornamental fish trade in the Stanley Pool region. Here the fish live under the swimming meadows of the water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes). At dawn they start hunting. Like a dead fish they slowly thrive through the water column. The special leopard pattern suggests a rotting carrion. Small fish are attracted by the obvious easy food and find themselves eaten as soon as they try to taste it.
Luckily enough it is not necessary to feed live fish. C. acutirostre can easily be adopted to frozen food (bloodworm etc.). They also can be kept in community tanks given the fact that possible tankmates are at least as half as long the Leopard bushfish. So they cannot be swallowed anymore and become not attacked. Leopard bushfish are totally peaceful as well against conspecifics as against other fish. But one has to choose calm species as tankmates, for the Leopard bushfish does not like hectic atmosphere at all!
For our customers: the depicted wild collected fish have code 115003 opn our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively supply the wholesale trade.
Text & photos: Frank Schäfer