Polypterus senegalus, Gray bichir : fisheries

Polypterus senegalus Cuvier 1829

Gray bichir
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Polypterus senegalus
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Classificatie / Names Populaire namen | Synoniemen | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

> Polypteriformes (Bichirs) > Polypteridae (Bichirs)
Etymology: Polypterus: Greek, poly = a lot of + Greek, pteron = wing, fin (Ref. 45335);  senegalus: Named after M. d'Arnaud, collector of the two specimens (Ref. 1688).  More on author: Cuvier.

Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range Ecologie

; zoetwater demersaal; pH range: 6.0 - 8.0; dH range: 5 - 19; potamodroom (Ref. 51243).   Tropical; 25°C - 28°C (Ref. 2060); 16°N - 2°S, 17°W - 37°E

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Africa: subspecies Polypterus senegalus senegalus known from West Africa, in Senegal, Gambia, Niger, Volta and Chad basins (Ref. 2835, 3188, 81263), up to Nile River basin (Ref. 2835, 3188) and lakes Turkana (Ref. 3188) and Albert (Ref. 41590, 48922, 48960); subspecies Polypterus senegalus meridionalis known from middle and upper Congo River basin (Ref. 2835, 3188, 4910, 45434).

Length at first maturity / Size / Gewicht / Leeftijd

Maturity: Lm ?, range 15 - 23 cm
Max length : 70.0 cm SL mannelijk/geslacht niet bekend; (Ref. 3188); Maximaal gepubliceerd gewicht: 207.00 g (Ref. 3013)

Korte beschrijving Morfologie | Morfometrie

Dorsale stekels (totaal): 8 - 11; Anale stekels 14-17; Wervels: 53 - 59. Diagnosis: Polypterus senegalus is characterized by jaws of equal length or an upper jaw slightly longer than lower jaw and a pectoral fin not reaching the first dorsal ray (Ref. 2756, 2835, 42908, 43035, 81263).

Biologie     Verklarende woordenlijst (b.v. epibenthic)

This species inhabits marginal swamps and freshwater lagoons (Ref. 3066) and it appears to favor sheltered inshore habitats (Ref. 3034); it inhabits the muddy regions at the sides of rivers and swampy waters, where it lies quiet or glides about with snake-like movements (Ref. 49805). During the hottest hours of the day, it comes to the surface just on the outer edge of the vegetation, and it goes back to the bottom when disturbed (Ref. 45962). It feeds on insects, crustaceans, mollusks, frogs and fishes (Ref. 4903, Ref. 28714). Polypterus senegalus senegalus is mainly insectivorous (Ref. 367). Longevity of Polypterus senegalus in captivity can be 34 years and more (Ref. 48954). Larval fish 1.1-3.8 cm SL were found in papyrus root mat and juveniles up to 10 cm SL retaining external gills were found in fringing water hyacinth. Feeds mainly on fishes (Ref. 9695), insects, crustaceans, mollusks, frogs as well as on plant fragments and seeds.

Life cycle and mating behavior Geslachtsrijpheid | Voortplanting | Kuitschieten | Eieren | Fecundity | Larven

In Polypterus senegalus courtship starts with a series of leaps from the surface by usually only one of the pair at a time, followed by a slow descent through the water. After a while the male stays very close to the female and at times the female will remain motionless in the water and the male will come up to her from behind and nudge her with sidewise movements of his head. The enlarged and swollen anal fin of the male is folded in a cup-like fashion and is used to brush the female (Ref. 42791). No nest is constructed, but the eggs are laid a few at a time throughout the thick vegetation (Ref. 42791). The larvae, which move about with the male parent in a dense school, are provided with accessory gills and appear very salamander-like (Ref. 42791).

Voornaamste referentie Upload your references | Referenties | Coördinator | Medewerkers

Gosse, J.P. and J. Daget, 2003. Polypteridae. p. 101-112. In D. Paugy, C. Lévêque and G.G Teugels (eds.) The fresh and brackish water fishes of West Africa Volume 1. Coll. faune et flore tropicales 40. Institut de recherche de développement, Paris, France, Muséum national d'histoire naturelle, Paris, France and Musée royal de l'Afrique Central, Tervuren, Belgium, 457p. (Ref. 81263)

Status op de Rode Lijst van het IUCN (Ref. 123251)

  Niet bedreigd (LC) ; Date assessed: 07 June 2019

CITES (Ref. 123416)

Not Evaluated

CMS (Ref. 116361)

Not Evaluated

Gevaarlijk voor mensen

  Harmless





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Estimates based on models

Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805):  PD50 = 0.5002   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00537 (0.00310 - 0.00931), b=3.00 (2.84 - 3.16), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245).
Trophic level (Ref. 69278):  3.5   ±0.2 se; based on diet studies.
Weerstandsvermogen (Ref. 120179):  zeer laag, minimale populatieverdubbelingstijd meer dan 14 jaar (tmax=34; Fec < 1,000).
Kwetsbaarheid (Ref. 59153):  Moderate to high vulnerability (50 of 100) .
Prijsklasse (Ref. 80766):   Unknown.