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· *M&F* Couple
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Common name- Electric Catfish
Scientific Name- Malapterurus electricus
Native geographical area- The rivers and lakes of tropical western Africa
Native habitat- Rocks or caves in dark rivers and lakes. Typical African near-equatorial sluggish jungle stream habitat.
Maximum Size- Approximately 2' (24 inches, 60 cm) in captivity
Minimum Aquarium Size- 60 gallons
Natural & captive Diet- Live foods such as worms or other fish. Also accepts meaty foods such as beefheart, crustaceans and sinking foods.
Tank zone- bottom
Temperament & compatibility- Aggressive and highly predatory, should be kept alone.
Hardness range- Soft to medium
pH range- 7.0 - 8.0
Optimal ph- 7.0
Temperature range- 75*f - 80*f
Salinity range- None. Freshwater only.
Photoperiod- Equatorial 12/12, but needs dark hiding places during day.
Seasonal changes critical? Unknown; hasn't spawned
Notable sensitivities- As a scaleless fish, they are sensitive to medications. Keep the temperature stable as with other fish.
Hardiness & Lifespan- Hardy, 10+ years
Physical description- Lacking a dorsal fin and scales, they are grayish brown in color with a few black spots on the body . Also has three sets of barbels around the mouth and a white band on the caudal peduncle.



Activity peak- nocturnal
Habits- Likes to dig and burrow. Will uproot plants or any other decor if possible. Spends most of the day hiding. If fed live foods, they will sometimes shock their prey
Spawning notes- Although it is difficult to sex them, females seem to be a bit plumper than males. Has not yet been successfully bred in captivity.
Other notes- The Electric Catfish has been known to serve as a meal for some. Why so they call it an Electric Catfish? Because it has an electric organ in which a specimen can emit up to 350 volts. The head is negative and the tail is positive. Yes, YOU CAN feel the shock, although most harm is done to other fish by either stunning them or killing them. If they feel threatened, they will use their shocking ability to protect themselves. Be extremely careful when you have your hand in the tank and avoid the fish as much as possible. If you do not handle them properly, this could result in injury. Caution should always come first when handling this fish. Some specimens may become friendly with their keeper and take food from their hand.
 
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