Tuesday, August 11, 2009


Some of y'all know that I am an enormous fan of primitive fish. They allow us a view of what the Age of Fishes was like to some extent, and everyone knows that the Devonian Period was by far the coolest part of the Paleozoic Era, which was filled with cool stuff. Anyway, I was playing around at Endangered Ugly Things yesterday and eventually came upon Ceratodus.com, an Australia-based breeder of Australian lungfish for the aquarist market. I don't want to post images from there without their permission, so just go look at their gallery - their lungfish are absolutely adorable, though all lungfish are terribly cute.
I first learned about lungfish as a child from a general "facts about animals" book my parents got me for Christmas one year. It had an illustration of a lungfish curled up in its muddy pocket and I was sold. Incidentally, this is the same book that taught me about jackdaws and Surinam toads.
Continuing with our story, it was through these links that I learned about Granddad, the oldest fish aquarium fish known, who also happens to be an Australian lungfish. Granddad has lived in Chicago since 1933, making him at least 80 years old. Next time I head over Chicago-way, I plan on paying my respects to this venerable fish.

I later ended up at Primitivefishes.com, which is pretty much a goldmine of these guys: bichirs, lungfish, coelacanths, gars (the first fish I ever caught), bowfins, bonytongues (arapaimas), knifefish, etc; awesome fish who I plan to talk about more in-depth later. This site in turn links to their forum, Aquatic Predators.com, which I intend to join and drool over - c'mon, they have a mormyrid forum! Everybody loves mormyrids!

Who can say no to a face like that?

I'm not the only lungfish lover out there, though: there's Lungfish.info and Anne Kemps Lungfish for all your lungfish info needs.
Nature also has an unfortunate editorial circa 2006 about the damming of the river that the Australian lungfish inhabits. Checking up on Wikipedia (always the scholarly source), it doesn't appear that the dam has been constructed yet (the projected timeframe was 2011) and there is substantial local opposition. Lungfish aren't the only species that would be affected by the dam: other non-human residents who'd be affected include the Mary River Cod and the Mary River Turtle, both endangered species.
More information can be found at Savethemaryriver.com, "...the official website of the SaveTheMaryRiver Coordinating Group - an organization dedicated to preventing the construction of a proposed dam on the Mary River at Traveston Crossing (Qld)."
NEWS FLASH: There was a substantial lungfish kill reported on June 25th below the North Pine Dam. More links to news articles may be found here.


  1. http://www.ceratodus.com/images/snowy02.jpg

    I never thought they would be so adorable!

  2. I wasn't joking, those are the cutest lungfish ever. I want to hug one but I doubt it would appreciate my sentiments.