Cladistii (bichirs) > Polypteriformes
(Bichirs) > Polypteridae
Etymology: Polypterus: Greek, poly = a lot of + Greek, pteron = wing, fin (Ref. 45335); delhezi: Named after M. Delhez, collector of the first specimen of Polypterus delhezi (Ref. 1877).
More on author: Boulenger.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Freshwater; demersal. Tropical; 26°C - 28°C (Ref. 2060)
Africa: middle Congo River basin (Ref. 3188) in Democratic Republic of the Congo and Republic of Congo. Reports from the Shari (Chad basin)(Ref. 1878, 3047, 3049) unconfirmed in Ref. 81263.
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 44.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 42908)
Morphology | Morphometrics
(total): 10 - 13;
soft rays: 11 - 14. Subcylindrical body (Ref. 42908). Upper and lower jaws reaching to the same level, or the lower jaw is a little shorter (Ref. 42873, Ref. 42901, Ref. 42908). Number of dorsal finlets: 10-13 (Ref. 42908, Ref. 51884). Pectoral fin not reaching dorsal fin origin (Ref. 41588). Ganoid scales (Ref. 42908): 52-58 lateral line scales, 36-40 scales around body, 12-17 predorsal scales (Ref. 41588, Ref. 42848, Ref. 42908, Ref. 51884). Dorsal side gray-olive colored, with 7 to 8 black transversal bars; ventral side yellowish, lighter on ventral side of head (Ref. 41580; Ref. 44841). Spots are forming a black line between the lips and suboperculum (Ref. 41580). Fins yellow with brown or black spots (Ref. 41580).
Facultative air-breathing (Ref. 126274); This carnivorous fish lives in streams, lakes and zones of flood (Ref. 41580). Reproduction and spawning occurs during the rainy season (Ref. 41580).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Reproduction occurs during the rainy season (Ref. 41580).
Robins, C.R., R.M. Bailey, C.E. Bond, J.R. Brooker, E.A. Lachner, R.N. Lea and W.B. Scott, 1991. World fishes important to North Americans. Exclusive of species from the continental waters of the United States and Canada. Am. Fish. Soc. Spec. Publ. (21):243 p. (Ref. 4537)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 125652)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: subsistence fisheries; aquarium: public aquariums
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingNutrientsMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82804
= 0.5002 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00457 (0.00194 - 0.01077), b=3.05 (2.85 - 3.25), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)family-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 3.2 ±0.25 se; based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Low, minimum population doubling time 4.5 - 14 years (Fec=2,350; tmax likely > 15 years).
Fishing Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low to moderate vulnerability (34 of 100).