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Microphis smithi, Dumeril, 1870

Origin:Afrika, Zaire/Niger. Here the fish occur in the vicinity of the riverbanks in densely grown areas

Etymology: Named in honour of Smith.

Synonyms:None

First European import:1954

Description:See pictures

Care: Keep the fish in species tanks of 100 cm minimum. The tank should be densely planted(see picture) and have some free swimming space available in the front. A sandy soil, some sunlight and a little current are benficial to the fish. Waterconditions, hard, slightly alkaline water, preferably with salt added(about 1 gram/liter).

Temperature:22-26 degrees

Feeding:Only small live food is accepted. The fish are difficult to feed, since they inspect the food thoroughly, and are slow eaters. In combination with other fish they usually die of starvation. Daphnia, , Bosmina, Cyclops and Artemia are suitable food.

Size:Up to 25 cm

pH: 7.0-7.5

Breeding: The fish have not yet been bred in aquaria. If they breed, the female will place the eggs on the males body, who will protect them, and care for them.
Update: In Artis aquarium in Amsterdam I photographed a fish on 23/2/2002 carrying eggs. See the image section since it is a rather large picture!

Sexual dimorphism: Females with rounded belly.

Prices: Unknown.

Additional: Difficult fish to keep!

Picture references: Picture 1: E. Naus

References:Baensch, H. A., Riehl, R.(1982): Aquarien Atlas I. Mergus Verlag, Melle, Germany.(click on the link to buy this book)

 

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