Diagnosis: Body cylindrical and more elongate than in other Protopterus species (Ref. 81627). Pectoral and pelvic fins filamentous (Ref. 40587). About 85-95 scales on the longitudinal line between operculum and anus (Ref. 104724).
Description: Anguilliform body (Ref. 46852). Head length 8,5-13,0 % of total length (Ref. 81627). Eyes are small, the diameter 4,5-9,5% of head length (Ref. 81627). Three gills on each side, but absent in specimens larger than 500 mm total length (Ref. 40587, 81627). Caudal fin pointed and confluent with the dorsal and anal fins; pectoral fins, 20,5-39.0% of preanal distance and often with a basal fringe, can reach twice the head length; pelvic fins, 17,6-26,9% of preanal distance, are a little shorter than the pectoral fins (Ref. 81627). The anus is positioned either on the right or left side of the body (Ref. 81627). Cycloid scales (Ref. 46852): 80-104 scales in longitudinal line in front of the pelvic fin; 40-48 scales around the body (Ref. 40587, 81627). Number of ribs: 47-55 (Ref. 41465, 81627).
Colouration: Overall brownish or greyish (Ref. 81627). Young have black spots dorsally and on the flanks; in adults this spotting is reduced or absent anteriorly and in large specimens disappears completely (Ref. 40587, 81627). The sensory canals on the head and the body are paler than the remainder of the body (Ref. 1878, 81627).