Senegal bichir (Polypterus senegalus) also known as the Gray Bichir, Cuvier's bichir, or Dinosaur Eel
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SENEGAL BICHIR Polypterus senegalus Senegal bichir (Polypterus senegalus) also known as the Gray Bichir, Cuvier's bichir, or Dinosaur Eel Appearance An elongated fish, usually grey or beige in color, it sometimes has shades of white, pink or blue on some scales; most of the fish is covered in very subtle patterns with occasional darker blotches or dots. The face is smooth and rounded at the nose with larger scales than the rest of the fish, external nostrils protrude from the front; eyes are on each side of the head, they are usually pale yellow with a black pupil; the mouth is large and seems to grin when closed. The body is long and vaguely cylindrical; a serrated dorsal fin runs along most of the body until it meets the caudal fin which is pointed and flat. The pectoral fins attach just behind and below the gill openings, and are the primary means of locomotion, providing a slow, graceful appearance. P. senegalus is smaller than other bichirs, reaching about 35.5 cm (14 in). The fish has a pair of primitive lungs instead of a swim bladder, allowing it to periodically gulp air from the surface of the water. In the aquarium, bichirs can be observed dashing to the surface for this purpose. This bichir's skin serves as a particularly effective armor, and has been studied as a model for personal armor for better combinations of protection and mobility. Behavior During active hours, Polypterus senegalus swim about their environment, performing activities such as exploring, feeding, hunting, investigating changes, and scavenging; social behavior is also observed as P. senegalus sometimes follow each other moving about; most individuals are inactive at night and rest low above the ground until sunrise.
|Scientific Name||Polypterus Senegalus|
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