Dwarf Snakehead (Channa gachua)

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Dwarf Snakehead

Channa gachua345345.jpg
Dwarf Snakehead

Channa gachua

208 Litres (55 US G.)

15-28.8 cm (5.9-11.3")




6.0 - 7.0

22 -26 °C (71.6-78.8°F)

12-15 °d

1:1 M:F

Live Foods
Other (See article)

8-12 years



Additional names

Dwarf Snakehead, Brown Snakehead

Additional scientific names

Ophicephalus gachua, Ophicephalus limbatus, Ophicephalus marginatus, Ophiocephalus gachua, Ophiocephalus guachua malaccensis


Found in a range of different water from fast flowing hill streams to more stagnant water from Sri Lanka to the Mekong (Xe Bangfai and Nam Theun basins) and Bali, Indonesia.


Mature females will have a rounder belly and mature males have brighter colouration in the dorsal, anal and caudal fins.

Tank compatibility[edit]

Any small tank mates will be seen as food for this fish so it is wise to keep the Dwarf Snakehead with other non-aggressive similar sized fish such as peaceful yet robust Cichlids.


The Dwarf Snakehead readily accepts most live foods and frozen food including shrimp and fish.

Feeding regime[edit]

Feed once or twice a day.

Environment specifics[edit]

Does best in a mature tank with a secure lid as these fish can jump. Provide hiding places with dense planting and large pieces of bogwood and rocks.


Will hunt and consume any fish smaller than itself, but is otherwise peaceful towards larger fish and even conspecifics.


Typical Snakehead in shape. Elongated with long anal and dorsal fins with large head and mouth. The body is grey-brown in colour, the fins are translucent with hints of blue and yellow edging.


External links[edit]