Half Banded Spiny Eel (Macrognathus Circumcinctus)
The Half Banded Spiny Eel is a small, slender, and attractive freshwater eel species known for its unique pattern of dark bands and spots over a beige base color.
These eels grow up to 5-8 inches in length and display a peaceful and shy personality. Unlike their larger cousins, Half Banded Spiny Eels are sociable and can be kept in groups of 5 or more, provided the aquarium is spacious enough with ample hiding spaces to maintain a harmonious community.
They do appreciate the company of other peaceful, medium to large sized fish that won't compete for hiding spots or food. Half Banded Spiny Eels are not aggressive, but adults can catch small fish overnight, so tankmates must be chosen with care. Neon Tetra sized fish, for example, is not recommended.
Half Banded Spiny Eel is carnivorous, primarily feeding on invertebrates, such as worms, insect larvae, and small fish. They prefer live or frozen foods but can also be trained to accept high-protein pellets or sinking wafers. They tend to be more active during the night, so offering them food in the evening is recommended.
The Half Banded Spiny Eel tank should be spacious and have plenty of plants, including floating varieties, to create a natural environment. Use sand as the substrate, as spiny eels enjoy burrowing. Provide plenty of hiding spots, as eels prefer to stay hidden during the day. Options for hiding places include bogwood, smooth rock caves, PVC pipes, and plant thickets. Without such hiding spots, they may become stressed and attempt to squeeze into any dark space available, potentially causing injury to themselves. Dim lighting makes eels feel more comfortable and venture out of their hideouts more frequently, so include plenty of floating plants to help diffuse lighting. Clean, well-filtered water is essential, and keep the water movement gentle to replicate the still waters these fish inhabit in the wild.
The minimum aquarium size for a single Half Banded Spiny Eel is 30 gallons, but a larger community tank of 60 gallons or more is ideal. They prefer water parameters of pH 6.0-7.5, dGH 5-15, and a temperature range of 73-82°F (23-28°C).
A secure, tight-fitting hood is essential, as eels can escape through small gaps.
To learn more about this fish, be sure to check out the Additional Information tab.