top of page

Basics About Snakehead fish

Snakehead  Fish
Snakehead Fish

General Info

Snakehead fish, also known as Channa micropeltes, are unique and predatory freshwater fish that require special care and attention when kept as pets. With their striking appearance and challenging care requirements, they make fascinating pets for experienced aquarium enthusiasts.

Distribution & Habitat

Native to Southeast Asia, Shark Snakeheads inhabit slow-moving rivers, lakes, and swamps with dense vegetation and muddy substrates.


Shark Snakeheads have elongated, snake-like bodies with large scales and a distinct pattern of red and black stripes. They can grow up to 3 feet in length, making them suitable for large aquariums.

Snakehead  Fish
Snakehead Fish

Aquarium Setup

  1. Tank size: A minimum of 180 gallons for a single adult fish.

  2. Water parameters: Maintain a temperature of 75-82°F, pH between 6.0-7.5, and a hardness of 5-15 dGH.

  3. Decoration and plants: Provide plenty of hiding spots using driftwood, rock caves, and dense vegetation.

Diet and Feeding

As carnivorous predators, Shark Snakeheads require a protein-rich diet. Offer live or frozen fish, shrimp, and insects, along with occasional treats like earthworms or feeder insects.

Breeding and Reproduction

Breeding Shark Snakeheads in a home aquarium is challenging due to their territorial nature and specific breeding conditions. They are known to build nests in shallow water using aquatic plants and require a separate breeding tank with optimal water parameters.

Health and Disease Prevention

  1. Maintain stable water parameters and perform regular water changes to prevent stress and disease.

  2. Quarantine new fish before adding them to the main tank.

  3. Monitor for common fish diseases like ich, fin rot, and bacterial infections, treating them promptly.

Social Structure and Tank Mates

Shark Snakeheads are aggressive, territorial fish and should be kept in a species-only tank. If housed with other fish, they may exhibit aggression and predation.

Offer your Shark Snakehead appropriately-sized insects like Promeal's dried roaches or mealworms as a nutritious and protein-rich part of their diet. Feed insects every other day, ensuring that they are consumed quickly to prevent water fouling.

Tips and Considerations

  1. Be prepared for the size and aggressive nature of Shark Snakeheads when planning their care.

  2. Use a secure lid on the aquarium, as they are known to be skilled jumpers.

  3. Check local regulations before acquiring a Shark Snakehead, as they may be invasive or restricted in some areas.


Shark Snakeheads are intriguing and challenging pets for experienced aquarists. By providing a spacious and well-planned environment, a protein-rich diet, and proper care, Shark Snakehead fish can thrive in a home aquarium. This comprehensive guide will help you ensure the best possible care for your Shark Snakehead, promoting their health and happiness.

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page