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Notopterus chitalaCommon name: clown knife
Whenever anyobdy sees a clown knife for the first time, the response is always "wow!" When I set out to purchase mine I looked for one that displayed the most impressive buttons. By this I mean the uniform spots running down the length of its body. I've seen some that have only 3 to 5 weak buttons, while others of the same size have 7 - 10 distinct patterning, like mine. He was only 6 inches when I purchsed him. I made his home for now a 30 gallon tank which he shares with a black ghost knife and a trio of elehpant nose. I feed him earthworms (sectioned by hand). This was a little tricky at first, because for some reason, he seemed to look beyond the worm I offerered and attempted to grab my fingers. The problem was light--they dont like it. I felt I needed light to see him though so I don't turn on any lights in the room except a few aquariums some 6 ft away. All day, he hides from the natural light in a cove that I built for him. Their eyes are very sensitive to light, so anything you can provide to hide away would be appreciated. This made him more active and responsive and I could see him well enough to note that he has really grown alot. Now he's almost 12" long in only a few months He is so beautiful and mystical. The deep arch in his back and graceful movement in the dim light revealing his spots was alomst spell binding. Now that he's grown, I vary his diet between earthworms and small feeder goldfish (usually both). He's got quite an appetite. At this rate I am going to have to get him a bigger tank, just for him. I've heard that, under ideal conditions, he could grow up to 24" in length. That would be so cool.
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