Leopard Bush Fish (Ctenopoma acutirostre)
Leopard Bush Fish are long-lived, exceptionally hardy and easy to care for, as well as displaying some exciting behaviour. These fish are ideal for the beginner aquarist.
The Leopard Bush Fish is suitable for a community aquarium as they tend to be relatively peaceful towards most other species of similar size; however, you must take care when choosing tankmates for these fish as they can be somewhat aggressive with species identical in colour as they see them as competition.
The leopard bush fish is a predator in the wild; therefore, it will eat small fish up to the overall size of an adult female guppy; anything more significant than that will, for the most part, be ignored. It would be better if you did not mix these fish with large, aggressive Cichlids as they may damage the Leopard Bush Fish or out-compete it for food.
Leopard Bush Fish are best maintained in a species-only aquarium and must be kept on their own or in a group of 5 or more individuals. Groups smaller than five are rarely successful and should not be attempted. When holding a larger group, you must introduce all individuals simultaneously as this will prevent any unnecessary territorial arguments that would otherwise be intended at any newcomers.
You can house them with other fish as long as you have a big enough aquarium. Suitable tank mates for the Leopard Bush Fish include Bala Sharks, Corydoras, Medium-sized Gouramis, plecostomus, Silver Dollars and Ancistrus Catfish, basically any fish that will not fit into their mouths.
Leopard Bush Fish enjoy plenty of space to swim around and places to hide. They will also appreciate other shady areas constructed from rocky caves or bogwood pieces.
Leopard Bush Fish have a rounded body that is laterally compressed with an elongated snout, big mouths and large eyes. These fish have long dorsal fins and a patterned colouring like that of a leopard. They have many oddly shaped dark brown spots scattered over their light brown bodies and a spot on their tail representing an eye. Sometimes you may find species that are so dark their spots are barely visible.
|Scientific Name||Ctenopoma acutirostre|
|Other Names||Leopard ctenopoma, Spotted ctenopoma, Spotted Climbing Perch, Spotted Leaf Fish, Spotted Cichlid, Spotted Bushfish.|
|Origins||Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo|
|Aquarium Level||Middle - Top|
|Difficulty||Beginner - Intermediate|
|Best kept as||Groups 5+|
|Lifespan||up to 10 years|
|PH||5.5 - 7.5|
|GH||5 - 15|
|TDS||36 - 215|
|68 - 78℉|
20 - 25.6℃
Because the Leopard Bush Fish is a carnivore; it would be best if you aimed to feed your fish on a diet primarily of meaty foodstuffs such as live and/or frozen daphnia, brine shrimp, lobster eggs, cyclops, Mysis shrimp and bloodworm. Bloodworm should be used sparingly as it is hard for your fish to digest.
You can also cut up earthworms from your garden or chop up shop brought mussels, prawns, krill and fresh fish (be sure only to use fresh or frozen fish and not fish canned in oil).
You can also try your fish with dried foods formulated for predatory fish and made up of insect material such as Fluval bug bites, which can also be used to supplement the diet.
Get to know your fish and test which foods they prefere and which they ignore but always be sure not to overfeed your fish and remove excessive uneaten food whenever possible.
It is somewhat straightforward to differentiate between males and females. Males usually have a roughly-textured area at the base of their caudal peduncle that is absent in females and typically has more spines on their gill covers.