Clown knifefish - Chitala chitala
Scientific name: Chitala chitala
Common name: Clown knifefish
Usual size in fish tanks: 90 - 100 cm (35.43 - 39.37 inch)
Recommended pH range for the species: 5.5 - 7
Recommended water hardness (dGH): 4 - 12°N (71.43 - 214.29ppm)
0°C 32°F30°C 86°F
Recommended temperature: 24 - 28 °C (75.2 - 82.4°F)
The way how these fish reproduce: Spawning
Where the species comes from: South Asia
Temperament to its own species: aggressive/territorial
Temperament toward other fish species: aggressive to smaller
Usual place in the tank: Middle levels
Chitala chitala fish comes from countries in Asia such as Laos, Vietnam, Thailand and Cambodia.
The Clown Knife Fish has a lifespan of up to 15 years.
It should be noted that due to their large adult size i.e. these fish can grow up to 120 cm in length, they should only be housed if you have a very large aquarium, they are best suited to public aquariums unless you are very experienced and have the facilities to house these fish in the correct conditions. The Clown Knife Fish does well if kept singly; they tend to not get along very well with their own kind. You can keep them with large catfish because they will not bother one another. Clown Knife Fish have bigger mouths than you might realize so be careful not to keep fish that are small enough to fit in their mouth. These very aggressive predators are also nocturnal.
They prefer dim lighting and well oxygenated water, there should be some water flow provided. As expected they are high waste producers which can cause problems if the correct housekeeping is not adhered to, keeping them in large aquariums will involve large water changes on a weekly basis, at least 50% of the water volume should be replaced with each change and the best affordable filtration system should be used.
The Clown Knife Fish is a carnivore that can be fed a variety of meaty foods such as worms, crustaceans and insects. They can be trained to accept a variety of store bought foods that contain other much needed nutrients. A common practice is to feed fish of this scale feeder fish but this should be discouraged as not only is it ill looked on by other fish keepers but it also increases the risk of contaminating the aquarium with diseases or infections carried by the fish offered for a meal.
Sexing Clown knifefish is virtually impossible to do without harming the fish.
It is known that in the wild the female deposits the eggs rather than scattering them on flat surfaces, once the eggs are laid it is the male that assumes all the parental duties. The male Clown Knife Fish stands guard over the eggs and the young. The eggs take approximately 1 week to hatch and the fry can be fed newly hatched brine shrimp.
Bought by aqua-fish.net from jjphoto.dk.