On the earth, GIANT ARAPAIMA is including among the oldest fresh water fish with common names Pirarucu and a paiche. A delicacy is found in its meat. It has bony tongue. Highly mineralized collagen is present in his scales that make it hard. Its body is flexible due to its corrugated shape. GIANT ARAPAIMA has a world record of being a monster sized fish with 416 pounds.
- Distribution and Habitat:
On the basin of Amazon River, the Arapaima is founded. Its range spread around the countries of Peru, Brazil and Guyana. In the parts of East Asia, this specie is introduced. During the wet season, its common habitat is flooded forests. On the other hand, in dry season it’s found in lakes, river channels, swamps, ponds and streams.
There are two major predators of GIANT ARAPAIMA. Those are:
- Spectacle caimans (caiman crocodiles).
- Life Expectancy:
They have a life span from 15 to 20 years.
They are mostly target of fishermen because they come to the surface for breathing regularly. For the natives of the Amazon, their traditional source of food is Arapaima due to its commercialization. Because of over fishing, its range is declining.
- The Arapaima is known as the largest and oldest freshwater fish.
- With a tooth tongue, they have a large and wide mouth which is a major feature of the osteoglossiformes order.
- With green-gray scales, it has streamlined body.
- Their scales are 2.36 in or 6 cm in length.
- Orange or Red spotted scales is present near its tail.
- Near its tail, dorsal and anal fins are present.
- The unique characteristic that separated it from others is that they breathe air from the surface.
- They have primitive lungs.
- They breathe in water with the help of gills.
Weight and Length:
- An Arapaima is having a weight about 200 kg.
- Its length is approximately 14.76 feet or 4.5 m long.
- In its native habitat, its size has been reduced by overfishing.
The diet of GIANT ARAPAIMA includes crustaceans, fish and small land animals that walk near the shore. It has an organ named labyrinths that is enriched with the blood vessels which open with the fish’s mouth. If they feel constrained, they leave the water by their environment.
Due to the seasonal flooding, their life cycle is affected greatly. When water levels are low or beginning to rise, they lay eggs. For the eggs protection they made the nest in muddy bottom areas that is about 50 centimeters (20 in) wide and 15 centimeters (5.9 in) deep. Their eggs hatch during May to August when the level of water rises.
Like the Osteoglossum, the males of GIANT ARAPAIMA are mouth brooders. This means that they take their young in his mouth until they are older. By circling around male, female protected them by predators.
In South America, its tongue has medicinal qualities. These medicines are used to kill the intestinal worms. These fishes is caught by large nets. An individual fish is having 70 kilograms of meat.