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October 24: Arrival of New Fresh Water Fish.

October 24: Arrival of New Marine Water Fish.


Included colors

African Butterfly Fish

African Butterfly Fish

Scientific Name: Pantodon buchholzi

Price: Upon Request

Origin: Africa

Family: Pantodontidae


Other Names: Freshwater butterflyfish, African butterflyfish, Butterflyfish, Butterfly Fish



Technical Info

Temperature: 24 - 28 ℃

pH: 6.5 - 7

GH: 3 - 12

Max size: 10 cm

Min Tank size: 60 Ltr

Position in Aqua: Top swimmer



The African Butterfly Fish got their name from their appearance when viewed from the surface. Their large pectoral fins give them a butterfly like appearance. An African Butterfly Fish has a flat head and back that is a light brown or greenish color with a silver sheen and has dark markings on the fins and underside. The large pectoral fins of the African Butterfly Fish are widespread and it uses them to glide over short distances. The wide lizard-like mouth is upturned at the top of the body, and true to form it eats all manner of surface insects. This fish will normally be found at the surface hoover for prey. It has a unique ability to breath surface air and its swim bladder not only regulates buoyancy but also helps with gas exchange while breathing surface air.



Since they are carnivores, the African Butterfly Fish will eat all types of protein foods. They especially like live insects. Feed flies, mosquito larvae, small spiders, worms, small fish, brine shrimp, small prawns, and large flake food. We have had good success feeding them small crickets. They are surface eaters, so anything that falls to the bottom will not be consumed by the African Butterfly Fish.



Inducing healthy African Butterfly Fish to spawn is not difficult. The usual trigger is a cool water change. The opaque white eggs, which immediately rise to the water surface, are laid in floating plants. They turn dark after 24 hours and will start to sink. The large eggs take about seven days to hatch. There is no parental care for the fry, and the parents are likely to eat them. If the goal is to raise African Butterfly Fish fry, the best method is to remove the parents from the tank when eggs are present.


Compatible with

The African Butterfly Fish is generally quite peaceable, but its trailing finnage offers irresistible temptation to fin-nipping species. Furthermore, it will eat any fish it can fit in its mouth and is often aggressive towards other surface dwelling species. Recommended tankmates include other African species such as Congo tetras, elephant nose fish, Synodontis catfish, African knife fish, Ctenopoma species, and small to medium-sized West African cichlids. It can also be combined successfully with Corydoras, and many Loricariids and peaceful South American cichlids. African Butterfly Fish can be somewhat aggressive towards conspecifics, but in a roomy tank with plenty of surface vegetation a small group can usually be kept without too many problems.



The fish can be sexed by looking at the back edge of the anal fin. This is straight in females and convex in males.