Animal Stories - Peacock Eel

Animal-World Information about: Peacock Eel

The Peacock Spiny Eel with its six attractive 'eyespots' is a very handsome freshwater eel!
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Anonymous - 2012-01-20
hi, I was wondering how many could I keep in a 40 gallon tank tank that I would say is 2' wide,3-3.5' long and about 8-12" high with a lockable lid? tankmates would include 4 firemouth cichlids,3 senegal bichirs,7-8 mosquito fish, 4 feeder minnows, 4-6 striped darters, and a female betta (personaly I think they are prettier than the males but thats my opinion).

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  • Clarice Brough - 2012-01-20
    Sounds like you have a pretty full tank already. Your fish are probably young right now, but they will grow. The minnows, mosquito fish, darters and betta will stay pretty small, but the other fish all get pretty big, with the firemouth's reaching about 6'. The Peacock will reach close to a foot in length, and the bichirs which also get that large, or more, and they inhabit the same part of the tank the eel does. So I would the space is pretty much filled up. You'll probably be looking for a bigger tank:)
  • Spellbound - 2012-01-31
    Is your tank light on? Mine swim at night in the dark alot.
Matt - 2011-12-11
Just got a peacock eel. i love it

CP - 2011-12-06
I bought a peacock eel about a week ago. After two days swimming around the aquarium (20 gal.), it suddenly disappeared overnight. Frantic searching on the floor and in the filter did not find him. Four days passed and yesterday I heard the filter 'hiccup' a couple of times. I quickly fully dismantled the filter apparatus to find my guy stuck in the small compartment of the filter, head down....but still alive! I rescued him, hoping I didn't harm him, although it took a bit of manipulation to free him. He is sitting on the bottom of the aquarium now, interested in food, but not actively pursuing it. I hope he survives!! He's incredible!

marylou - 2011-11-20
I just bought strip peacock eel for the looks. I'm learning as I go.

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  • Charlie Roche - 2011-11-21
    It is best to go slow and learn. Sounds like a good start.
john - 2011-09-25
Just out of curiosity, at a certain size would it be okay to feed them feeder minnows, if so what size?

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  • Jasmine Brough Hinesley - 2011-09-25
    If your peacock eel, Macrognathus siamensis, is a large enough adult, you may be able to feed it feeder minnows. Feeder minnows are kind of large for their mouths normally, and they usually do better with blood worms. You'll just have to try it and see if it eats them without much difficulty.
Holly - 2011-05-01
So my striped peacock female has laid eggs in my aquarium. My concern is that I do not have a male, as it has been said there is hardly any difference in a female to make it easy for me to find a male for her. She actually lives in at 10 gallon tank and I'm about to move her to 20 or 20+ tank so she has more room. Besides that would breeding be encouraged for the species? if I got another female by mistake would they get along, also with this is cross breeding possible by chance? Thanks.

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  • Charlie Roche - 2011-05-02
    Peacock eels are peaceful and will get along with most things. They will get along with other Peacock eels, but you should get one approsimately the same size. If you are going to do that, you probably want a larger tank than 20 gallon. The females from the males can not be distinguised and to the best of our knowledge, they have not been bred in captivity. You might want to check out the article in Animal World that is attached. Hey no hardm in try to breed them, you could be a first.
  • Dr Harpar - 2011-07-19
    If you intend to upgrade the tank do it as soon as possible. Nothing less than 35 gallons is required to house these eels. I hope you make the right choice and upgrade that tank. and no, they rarely breed in captivity and has only been documented a couple of times.
nick - 2011-05-22
I just got a striped peacock eel (less than a week ago) and it makes a chirping noise. Do you know why? Have you heard this?

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  • Charlie Roche - 2011-05-23
    I can't find anything about a Peacock Eel making any sort of chirping sound. I thought it might be him hitting the sides of the tank of something inside the tank but I can find nothing. Then I looked on U-tube for Eels making sounds and they have eels but not one was making any sound. If you could film yours with the sound effects, then put it up on U-tube because I think many people would be interested.
  • Debbie - 2011-07-17
    I have had my peacock eel for 15 years and while very animated, I have never heard her make any noise.
Mike - 2008-12-15
I've had a peacock eel for one week, I've never seen him eat. I have tried hand feeding but he won't eat, and earthworms he won't touch. What do I do?

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  • Kaylee - 2011-01-03
    I have the same problem with mine. Not only does he not eat but he does this weird thing where he will sit on one of my decorations sideways and he just dandles there for long periods of time. I don't know why but it's starting to make me worry.
  • Lithium - 2011-02-05
    The first week was difficult for my eel too I rarely saw him and didn't know if he was eating or not but it's been about 2 months now and he's a social butterfly surprisingly he loves to swim around the tank I haven't ever seen him be aggressive he does love to just hang out dangling off plants and fixtures in the tank tho I think that's just them hangin out.
  • Lithium - 2011-02-05
    I feed mine Frozen Brine Shrimp and I never seen him eat either But I feed him with a turkey baster and he's gotten used to it now so I can actually watch him eat if you get the frozen brine shrimp just mix it with warm water let it all break apart and feed your eel with a turkey baster that might help.
  • Joy Hastings - 2011-04-07
    Night crawlers. Get them at pet co - live an keep them in the fridge. Just drop one in and he will find it, and play with it, then eat it. It is amazing.
  • Holly - 2011-05-01
    I have a striped peacock eel. Love her. She actually laid eggs right on the side of the tank. She is so cute. I feed her by hand. I let the frozen blood worms run around in the tank and then in the area that she always hides in around the same time of day. I reach down there with the blood worms that are just lightly picked off and fuzzy, and put them right in front of her face. She just jerks, some times lightly pulls them out of my fingers that I hardly have a grasp on it to start with. Blood worms in my opinion are the best way to go by far.
Kirsten - 2009-04-28
I have had a striped peacock eel for a few months now and absolutely love him, living in a 29 gallon with platys, tetras, and a loach. He disappeared one morning and thinking he had just buried himself under the gravel, I continued with my plan to clean my Whisper filter (you know - the external waterfall type filter) Taking it to the sink, I change out the filter bags and carbon and dumped the excess water down the drain to scrub the inside and too late, I watched my eel slide out of the filter - very much alive- and right into the garbage disposal. I was about to give him up for lost (i couldn't figure out how to open the pipes to try to save him in the u-part of the pipe), but before I did I shined the flashlight down the drain one last time and there he was sitting on the platform slithering around out of water and between the blades. After a 1/2 hour trying, I finally fished him out with a twisted up fish net and a spoon. I dumped him in a spare tub of aquarium water to "rinse" off the gunk he accumulated in the drain and quickly placed him back in the tank. 5 days later he is still alive and well, eating as usual and none the worse for wear - only a small scratch that is healing well. I never would have expected him to swim upstream/uphill AND out of the tank into my filter, not to mention surviving a 1/2 hour out of water and the stress of being chased around with implements to save his life. I thought for sure he was a goner, but he is hardier than I thought!

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  • Jeff - 2010-02-23
    Actually it has been recorded that many varieties of eel can in fact survive out of water fo periods of time and even travel over land; usually in order to travel to mating grounds when full grown.
  • Andrew - 2010-08-06
    This story is pretty amazing. Nice job on the rescue. I have two of these guys myself (similar tank setup), and they can be nefarious little buggers. All in all, great species of eel for any community setup in my opinion. I hope I never have to fish one out of a garbage disposal though:)
Joy Hastings - 2011-03-29
Can you overfeed a Peacock Ell ? I was feeding Stretch (his name) one earth worm every two days and all my fish would eat at it, 2 sharks, 4 silver dollars, 7 cat fish, 2 dwarf frogs an 1 hugh snail. Now stretch is eating most of the worm and I am feeding him one every night, he waits for it at the same spot , he will play with it then hide with it and then eat it.
Is one a night to much for him? The worms are longer then he is, he is and beautiful and very friendly.
thanks for your help

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  • Charlie Roche - 2011-03-30
    From what I have read, it is not possible to overfeed a Peacock Eel. Quite the contrary in they will eat a considerable amount of food. Warning here, small fish will also be food for the Peacock Eel and from what I understand they are not very discriminating. Enjoy.