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Keeping Snakehead species in aquariums

Channa species are fascinating fish to keep in aquariums that unfortunately grows too big for most aquariums. There is however a smaller number small species that is more suitable for more normal aquariums. You should never buy Channa species if you don't have a very large aquarium and a large food budget. Always find out how large your Channa species grows before buying it. Adult Channas are territorial and it can sometimes be hard to keep more then one specimen of the larger species in the same aquarium.

Channa species breathe air and that means that they must have access to the water surface to be able to breathe. They will drown if they somehow are prevented from reaching the surface. Very young Channas are able to absorb oxygen out of the water but this ability is lost as they mature. Channa species are great jumpers and it is therefore very important to cover the aquarium well without preventing fresh air to reach the water surface. Channa species accepts most pH levels and is overall very tolerant to different water values. They do however require warm water.

Different Channa species is best kept in slightly different aquarium setups since they have slightly different demands, most species will however thrive in an aquarium with some planted areas and a lot of hiding places. Especially young fish requires hiding places where they can fell secure. Many Channa species spawn in planted areas and plants will therefore helps them feel at home. Make sure that all decoration is properly secured and place all larger rocks directly on the glass to make the decoration snakehead safe. Channa species should never be kept with fishes that are less then 2/3 of the Channa size since smaller fishes might be considered food. A fish isn't safe in an aquarium with channas just because it doesn't fit into the mouth of the Channa since Channas will bite bits out of it until it is devoured if it is small enough for the Channa to consider it to be food.

Channa species can be trained to accept most food and will once they started accepting dead food try to eat everything you put in the aquarium that is small enough to fit in their mouth. Don't be surprise if they taste the heater and other aquarium decoration. This makes them very easy to feed which is lucky since Channa species eats a lot. The fact that these fish eat a lot means that weekly water changes of at least 50% of the water. Channa species do however prefer and are best kept on live food and you might have to feed them live food until you successfully trained them to accept dead food.

Many Channa species can be breed in aquariums or ponds without to much problem. Some Channa species are mouth brooders and all guard their young. Thy fry has to be sorted after size since the fry is very predatory and will eat their smaller siblings if they get the chance. Fry is sometimes very shy and prefers to move in schools.

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