The Beauty of Ancient Fish - Arowana

Its body looked sturdy, a fierce face with a challenging "mustache". Even so the movement is very graceful with a charming glitter. Its body can be covered in bright gold, red, or even silver, it is also possible to be covered in a tinge of yellow, green, and even black, besides that there is also a blue base color. Amid the elegance, grace and beauty, at the same time also saved a large power. That is a glimpse of this one fish, Arowana.

The beautiful Arowana is a primitive fish. Various literature states that these fish fossils are found in various places on the surface of the earth. It is suspected that these fossils are between 10 - 60 million years old. Thus it may be said that arowana has evolved for more than 10 million years on this earth. Therefore, it is not surprising that they later become fish that are resistant and long-lived.

Arowana is scientifically classified in Osteoglasidae or "bony-tongue" fish family, because the bottom part of the mouth is a bone that as teeth, Arowana has various nicknames, such as: Dragon Fish, Siluk, Kayangan, Peyang, Tangkelese, Aruwana, each place has a different nickname for this fish.

As an ancient fish, Arwana has a beautiful and unique shape and appearance. Its body is elongated, slim and "stream line", while the swimming movement is very graceful. In nature Arowana has a variety of colors from green, silver, to red. Two murmurs appeared sticking out of his lower lip. This murmurs functions as a vibration sensor to determine the position of the prey on the surface of the water. The akuaris use the presence and appearance of the murur in the assessment criteria for the beauty of the Arowana.

Arowana is a large and sometimes aggressive fish, not everyone is interested to maintaining it. Besides that, the price, for certain types, makes people think twice before buy it. With its large size, we need to provide larger aquarium than the standard aquarium. Generally, arowana has a high growth rate, especially when given high protein foods. In aquariums, arowana can grow to about 60 cm, while in nature can reach 90 cm more, even in certain types can reach 300 cm (Arowana from South America).

Arowana is the top swimmer fish, the shape of the mouth is very clear indicating this. In nature they usually swim near the surface, and hunt for insects as they prey. Therefore arowana feeding is not a difficult thing as long as we know that they are "surface feeders". In general arowana is not a voter in terms of food, they can receive all types of food for carnivorous fish, but often they become very fond of just one type of food, and refuse other types.

Arowana is a jumping fish, in nature they can catch insects perched on twigs at 1-2 meters above the water surface. Therefore it is necessary to pay attention to closing the aquarium properly if you want to keep it in the aquarium. Arowana can be said to be resistant to various diseases. However, they are sensitive to changes in water quality, especially in increasing levels of ammonia, nitrite and nitrate.

Various types of Arowana.

Arowana can be found in various places in the world with different shapes and colors. At least known as Arowana from Asia, Australia, America and Africa. Arowana Asia seems to be a type that has many variations with a beautiful appearance. The following is a description of the types of arowana:

Red Arowana

Red Arowana is a type of arowana that comes from Kapuas River and Lake Sentarum, Province of West Kalimantan. Both of these places are known as natural habitats of Super Red Arowana (Chile and Blood Red).

The full red color has already appear on the young fish fins, on the lips and also the groan. Towards adulthood, the next red color will appear on various other parts of the body, especially the cheeks (gill cover) and the edges of the scales, so the whole fish will showing a red impression.

Basically, red Arowana is grouped into 4 varieties, namely Red Blood (Blood Red), Red Chili (Chile Red), Red Orange (Orange Red), and Red Gold (Golden Red). These four varieties are generally given the nickname of First Grade Red. Even so, in its development super red refers to Red Chili and Red Blood. While the last two varieties are more often regarded as lower grade super reds.

The geographical habitat influence the creation of different variations on the morphology of this fish, such as a wider body, spoon-shaped head, a more intense red color, and a thicker base color.

The name Red Chili and Red Blood is given based on the appearance of the color intensity that appears. Red Chili shows the appearance of color just like the color of chili, while blood red shows the appearance of a blood color. Red Arowana Chili has a wider body shape, while Red Arowana Blood is longer and slimmer. The width of the Red Chili body is relatively fixed until near the base of the tail, while the Red Blood appears to narrow gradually. Other than that, Red Chili tends to have a spoon-shaped head, with thicker scales. Red Chili is also characterized by red and wide eye colors, with diamond shaped tails.

Because of the width of the Red Chili's eye, sometimes the edges of the eye seem to touch the top of the head and the lower jaw. The Red Blood is whiter and smaller, and has a fan-shaped tail. The characteristics of the physical morphology mentioned above have been seen when Arowana is still small, so that it can be used as an initial identifier to distinguish the two when they still young. Besides that, young red chili tend to have a green base color with thick metallic luster, while red blood has a weaker luster and tends to be similar to young Red Tail Golden (RTG). The body of the young Red Blood also looked more rounded than the young Red Chili.

The color development between Red Chili and Red Blood is also known differently. Red Chili growth is slower than the Red Blood growth. The difference in achieving this full red color can be between 1 to 2 years. Even though the achievement of the full red color is different, but the color development stage is relatively the same. Usually both will go through an orange transition. Some events indicate that hese red arowana have a color that remains pale for up to 8 years, then changes to full red within 1 month.

It is not easy, indeed, in estimating the red arowana. Big Patience and hard effort are needed to determine the true potential of a red arowana. However, with experience and patience, this can be done.
Red Orange Varieties (Orange is one of the most common varieties. As adults, their scales show an orange color. Compared to Chilli Red and Blood Red, the fins and tails of this variety are not as bright as the two.

Red Gold (Golden red) is a 1 color variety commonly found in addition to red orange (Orange Red). This variety is the lowest grade variety.

After adulthood, the body color is only yellowish gold. The color of the lips and fins is not as red as Super Red, but it is pink.

Cross Back Golden Arowana (CBG)

Cross back varieties are part of the varieties of golden arowana. This variety is found in various places in Malaysia, such as Perak, Trengganu, Bukit Merah Lake and Johor. Therefore, they are often given nicknames according to their place of origin, such as: Golden Pahang, Bukit Merah Blue, Malaysian Gold etc. Referred to as a cross back, because this variety will have a full gold color until it passes through its back, when the fish is grown.

This variety is relatively rare, so the prices is relatively more expensive than other varieties. It may even be said to be the highest priced variety.

Depending on the basic color of scales, CBG can be classified into Purple-Based (purple base color), Blue-Based (blue base color), Gold Based (gold base color), and Silver-Based (silver base color). Arwana Gold with a gold base color is known to reach full color at a younger age than other varieties.

Red Tail Golden Arowana (RTG)

It is a variety of golden arowana and is often referred to as the Indonesian Golden Arowana (Indonesian Golden Arwana). This variety is found in Pekan Baru, Sumatra. Unlike Cross Back Golden (CBG), the color "gold" in this variety will not develop until it passes through the back. The gold color will generally only reach the line to the four scales (the line of scales is calculated from the bottom, the stomach), or better can reach the fifth row.

Like cross back varieties, the basic color of RTG scales can be blue, green, or gold. Likewise with the color of the lips, tail and fins, these two varieties have very similar performance. Young RTG has a more dull color than young cross back varieties.

RTG can be said to be more resilient than its brother, CBG, can grow bigger, and also more aggressive. Its abundance in nature is relatively more than that of CBG, though it remains a CITES-protected variety.

Green Arowana

Green Arowana is another type of arowana commonly found in Thailand, Malaysia, Myanmar, Komboja, and also in several places in Indonesia. Variations in appearance and color can be found in each region. However, in general it can be said that generally greenish gray with dark stripes on the tail. The head and mouth are bigger and more rounded compared to other types of Asian arowana.

Red Banjar

Red Banjar may be said to be a second class red arowana variety and it is known that it is not a mummy red arowana strain. Its appearance is indicated by the pale orange fin color, orange or yellow tail, and does not have a red color on the body or on the cheeks.

At first glance, Red Banjar juvenil is very similar to Arwana Pink, so it is very common some new hobbyists been deceived . As we mentioned above, Pink Arowana has concentrated red fins evenly on the entire surface of the fin, while the Red Banjar has a lighter or orange-pale red color.

The red Banjar scales has yellow and or greenish color, besides that the appearance is not as polished as the real Red Arowana. Banjar is also characterized by the shape of the head which tends to round with a mouth that is not too sharp. Other features are: Young Red Arowana gill cover and its fin frame has a dark pink color or resemble rust color, which will then turn to orange or red after adult, while Banjar does not have the color appearance on the gill cover even if it is mature.

If you are hesitant in choosing arowana, bring friends who have experience maintaining arowana or buy certified Arowana, and are accompanied by a valid certificate. You can file a complaint later, if the items sold are not same as promised.

Other than arowana type we described above there are other arowana found in other places. The Arowana are: Scleropages jardini or Irian Arowana or often also referred to as Pearl Arowana or also Northern Barramundi, Australian Arowana (Scleropages leichardtii) or Saratoga Arowana, South American Arowana, which consists of Silver (Osteglossum bochirrhossum), Black Silver (Osteoglossum ferrerai), and also Arapaima gigas., and African Arowana (Heterotis niloticus). Unlike Asian arowana in general, these arowana are easily distinguished from one another because they have different physical characteristics.

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