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Osteoglossum bicirrhosum
Silver Arowana

 Age of Aquariums > Freshwater Fish > Silver Arowana - Osteoglossum bicirrhosum

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Osteoglossum_bicirrhosum_2.jpg (14kb)
Photo Credit: Zeco Carvalho

I have a 35 cm Silver that is absolutely stunning. Watching their serpentine movements can be hypnotic. The tank bred Silvers do seem to have a genetic propensity for drop-eye. To avoid it, don't overfeed on fatty food, and watch the water quality carefully. They say you should feed floating food so the fish doesn't make a habit of looking down to hunt for food. I've also been told that putting something like a ping pong ball to float along the surface will help correct drop-eye because it encourages the fish to look up. Not sure if this is true. Including shrimp or krill in the diet will enhance the pink tones of the fish, and I've trained mine to eat these from my hand. Watch your fingers!

Contributed by Chris Meeske

I have owned Arowanas for about 12 years now and learned alot about them by "hands on" experience since I live in a small town where information on them is scarce. I have had good luck with them and have noted some information:

1. They definitely are jumpers so a lid is a must! ( I even had to put a book on top as they can even knock the lid off!)

2. They seem to prefer to always have light. Lack of it makes them nervous and jumpy. If you turn the tank light off, leave a room light on or even the light from a tv and this usually solves the problem.

3. It seems the more you feed them, the better and faster they grow. (I usually provide about 6 goldfish a day for any over 1 year old) but this can be expensive. They can survive with 1/3 that amount.

4. A large tank is a must!

5. A clean aquarium is a must - Don`t go cheap on filters. A nice one may cost a little more, but as a rule are easier to clean and will ensure a healthy fish.

6. I have had great success with a pH of 6.5 and a temperature of about 25C. Soft water is also recommended, about 6dH.

Bear all these things in mind and you will have a beautiful, interesting, and unusual pet for years to come. I have owned plain, silver, green, and black Arowanas and have loved and enjoyed them all! Good Luck and have fun!

Contributed by David McLaughlin

Well concerning drop is actually due to the fish looking downwards for food during juvenile age. In the wild this particular fish hunts on the surface of the water for insects or other fishes. If you notice that your fish is developing drop your fish in uncovered tanks or tanks that are open at the top only such as tanks built for Koi fish, from here your fish will hunt for food on the surface as in the natural environment and will finally recover back. This will work when the fish is still young. I have not tried out with older or adult fish.

Contributed by KC Kew

I used to keep snakes and lizards, then came an arowana, it was love at first sight. I fed him all kinds of stuff: fish, worms, frogs, grasshoppers almost everything I could find and he grew like he wanted to be a whaleshark. Then he got a virus infection, introduced by fish caught in the wild, and died! I wept! I dedicated my belly to him and tattooed LOCO (his name) from my chestbone to my bellybutton. He's with me for life. Now I have a new one, it grows like hell but I keep all my live food in quarantine for at least a week. Enjoy your arowana but BEWARE!

Contributed by F. Stemfoort

I have owned many Silvers and all of them have gotten much larger than 60 cm. They are the most graceful fish I have ever owned. I have fed shrimp (fresh), krill, nightcrawlers, and very rarely goldfish and other live foods (but only after they have been quarantined). Like everyone else I believe that these fish should be kept in as large of a tank as possible. Best of luck on keeping these silver beauties.

Contributed by (no name given)

Although the Silver Arowana lacks the colour of some tropical fish species, their size, grace and near constant movement puts them in a class of their own. I have had my Silver for 4 months now and it is now currently 25 cm long. In my homeland, Australia, all the Arowana species are illegal imports, which means that they are very expensive fish to buy. I bought my Silver when it was about 15 cm long and it cost me $350. (Big difference compared to $10 or $20 for a 10-20 cm fish mentioned in the other comments!). I feed my Silver once a day and each feed consists of 3 red worms and about 4 sinking catfish pellets. I carry out a 25% water change each week. My Arowana is definitely an eye catcher as every friend that has visited the house and seen the tank has commented on what and unusual and interesting fish they are. Even though the Arowana is an expensive fish, in my opinion, it was worth every dollar I paid for it and I would recommend the Silver Arowana to anyone who has a large tank who wants a large, impressive and long lived fish.

Contributed by David Quan

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