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Bowfin Fish

About Bowfin Fish

The bowfin is the last remaining fish of a once prolific family whose fossils have been unearthed in Europe and North America. This fish likes quiet water. They eat frogs, crayfish, as well as dead fish. Younger specimens also feed on aquatic insects. The Bowfin is long and thick set with a squat head and large mouth filled with sharp teeth. The bowfin looks very much like a predator. It has a long dorsal fin and a large tail which gives it a hunting speed. Internally, it has a unique swim bladder that acts like a lung. This will let them live and thrive in water with low oxygen levels.

Bowfins breed in the late spring. The eggs are laid in a nest that is built by the male fish. Usually, 3 or more females will lay their eggs in the same nest. The eggs will hatch in 8 to 10 days. The male will stand guard over the eggs during the incubation period and for a time after they hatch. After they have hatched, the young spend 9-10 days in the weeds next to the nest.

Color: In overall color the bowfin is a drab mottled brown. It has a noticeable dark spot on the base of the tail. In the male this is ringed in orange/yellow.