Most people are fairly familiar with the freshwater 'Sharks' of Asia, like the Rainbow 'Shark' (Epalzeorhyncho frenatum
) and the Red-tailed 'Shark' (Epalzeorhynchos bicolor
) but not many people are aware that the group is well-represented among African aquatic faunas as well.
This is Labeo cyclorhynchus
, the Variegated 'Shark' (or Harlequin 'Shark') a Cyprinid from the Middle and Lower Congo River and Ogowe River regions of Africa. Unlike some of its relatives, this fish stays at a reasonably manageable size of about 16cm (about 6 inches) and, while it will lose some of its color as it matures, it should still remain a very pretty fish.
Currently this one is about 4 inches long and is housed with a couple of African Pike Characins (Phago
), one of which can be seen hovering hungrily in the background.