So you’ve heard of the fascinating and truly unique lizard fish. Many people have a strong affection for these colourful, beautiful fish and would love to see them in their aquariums. But they are quite shy and will not be a first choice for most new aquarists. Here is some information on keeping these fish and the best way to introduce them to your fish tank.
All forms of Lizards and Cichlids are classed as representatives of the Metatheria. They all belong to the same genus but are not closely related and are therefore not the same species. In fact all Metatheria are native to the Old World and have evolved separately over time. The three main representatives of this genus are the Common Name Carpio, the scientific name Labeo Bicolor and the North American Names Carpio varieir. Being the most dominant predator of the deep oceans, even in the deep waters, which are much less than 100 meters deep, is not easy: although there are small predators of prey such as wriggling fish and crabs, there are very few fish in the deep that are not prey for Lizards and Cichlids. This makes lizard fish a great addition to any aquarium.
Two of the most popular and best known varieties are the Cyprinus Carpio and the Pseudonaja Labeo. The Carp is from the oceans of the North Atlantic, while the label has an estimated range from South America to the Pacific Ocean. The two species share a similar diet, feeding on crabs, fish and invertebrates, but differ in appearance. The Carp is generally smaller with a bright red gill cover and a somewhat rounded shape; the Pseudonaja has gray colored, streamlined fins with black dots on the sides. Both species are good jumpers and escape better from predators in the wild than in captivity.
Other common ornithischia include the peacock bass, small tuberous-bellied sunfish, the common sunfish, the long-eared guppy and the watermelon coney. All belong to the synodontidae family which has some six different species. Each specie has a slightly different color pattern. Although all belong to the same or similar family, the different species have very different needs and lifestyle.
Many of these fish grow very large, some reaching 25 inches or more, with impressive tails. They can live both in fresh and salt water; although in the freshwater they tend to live in cleaner environments but in the saltwater they are usually found in rocky areas near the shoreline. They do not need much room for swimming thus they can spend most of their time at the bottom of the aquarium.
When buying a pet, you should consider the size of the animal and its age. A fully grown adult requires at least one meter of length and one meter of width, while a baby requires half that of an adult. The average weight of a lizard fish is around forty-five grams, while they can reach even hundreds of grams in the case of the teleost fish. In addition, they have thick scales, colored pigments on their heads, bodies and tail but there are no other distinguishing characteristics.
The colors of these creatures can vary due to their kind of habitat and diet. Some of them have green, gray or brown colored bodies, while others have red, orange, yellow or white colorations. Their coloration helps them blend into the environment and prevent any kind of predators to hunt them. During the evening, they tend to move away from the lights, but come out of hiding during dawn to hunt fish or mosquitoes. While hunting, they use their camouflage features to hide behind bushes, leaves or logs. Their speed and strength are enhanced when they are molting, which takes place during the wintertime or springtime.
Apart from the unique features of the lizard fish, it should be noted that they grow in different sizes, from just a few centimeters to a meter. Some reach up to ten centimeters in length, while others remain even smaller. They feed on small fish, worms and crustaceans. They also eat vegetation, roots and algae in their natural habitat, although they are carnivores by nature and eat meat only in captivity. These creatures were named as synodontidae family members because of their unique characteristics, which help them separate from other animals.