Crossband pegging

Originally, the Querbandhechtling lived in the swamps of West Africa. In the course of the years it was exported beyond the national borders also to domestic aquaria.

What distinguishes crossband pikelets?

Crossbanded pike are used to a muddy environment. In Africa, they are mainly found in swamp areas. Biologically, they are considered to be the egg-laying tooth carp.

The appearance of crossbanded pike:

Pikelets are reddish in colour, often turning brownish. Furthermore there are yellow colorations on the fins. Further yellow areas are at the sides. Elevations on the dorsal fin are untypical for pike. Their body shape is straight from head to tail fin.

  • Straight body shape
  • Colours vary between brown and red
  • Yellow colours on the fins and on the sides

Housing conditions:

Cross-banded pikelets are suitable for small groups. An ideal composition consists of an unequal distribution of male and female fish. The female portion should predominate. Living together with other breeds is without complications. However, they must not be too small, so that they are not devoured by cross-banded pikelets.

At the sides the aquarium should measure about one meter to offer enough space for swimming. A capacity of 54 to 100 litres is sufficient as space.

Since crossband pikelets are very agile, they occasionally jump out of the tank. A cover effectively counteracts this behaviour. They are peace-loving towards their conspecifics or other fish.


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Under these conditions, the pike may reach a maximum age of five years

  • Small group housing is recommended (no more than six to eight animals)
  • More females than males
  • Common pool with other breeds works without difficulties
  • Size of other breeds should be equal to the length of the pike
  • Required side length of the aquarium ~ 1 meter, capacity 54 to 100 meters
  • Opening of the aquarium provided with a cover

Gender differences:

Basically male pikelets reach a longer body height with about six centimetres than the females. In addition, cross-band pike males stand out due to their more intense colour nuances.

With regard to fins, there is another difference by which the sexes can be determined. Female pikelets have round anal fins, while the male ones are pointed.

Water values for cross-banded pikelets:

A pH value between 6 and 7.5 with a simultaneous temperature of 21 to 28 degrees is well tolerated by crossbanded pikelets. The water hardness should be at an average of 5 to 12 dGH.

Feed and nutrition for crossbanded pikelets:

This breed of pike prefers to eat larvae of fish or insects such as mosquito larvae. In the aquarium they can be fed with dry as well as with frozen live food.

The ideal aquarium for crossbanded pikelets:

Crossband pinnates enjoy a wide range of space. Therefore the aquarium should not be too small. The above mentioned specification of one meter side length can be used as a guideline. The bottom is sprinkled with peat, where the pikelets can lay their eggs. Alternatively, fine sand can be used for the bottom.

The animals can retreat in plant growths. Stones and sand niches offer additional places for resting. A layer of floating plants is also gladly accepted by the cross-banded pike. They fulfil a complementary purpose by preventing the animals from jumping out of the tank.

Special features of crossbanded pikelets:

In Germany, the Querbandhechtling is known since the beginning of the 20th century. This makes it one of the ‘older’ ornamental fish. Its attractive colouring contributes a decisive part to its popularity.

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