The flying fox (''Epalzeorhynchos kalopterus'') is a
Southeast Asia Southeast Asia or Southeastern Asia is the United Nations geoscheme for Asia#South-eastern Asia, southeastern subregion of Asia, consisting of the regions that are geographically south of China, east of the Indian subcontinent and north-west o ...

Southeast Asia
n species of freshwater fish in the family Cyprinidae. It is commonly kept in the aquarium trade. Among other foods, it is known to eat
green algae
green algae
.Flying Fox (''Epalzeorhynchus kallopterus''), Mongabay.com, 2006
retrieved on: August 20, 2007
It is sometimes mistakenly referred to as the .


The flying fox fish has a characteristic long body with a flat abdominal area. Its dorsal area has a coloration ranging from olive to dark brown. The lower half of its body has a yellowish white hue. A brownish-black line runs from its mouth to the caudal fin. On top of this distinctive black line is a gold-colored stripe. The eyes of a flying fox may have a reddish iris. Its dorsal, anal and ventral fins consist of a transparent front with a thick black band along the edge. Although capable of reaching up to , flying foxes have an average length of and are frequent victims of stunting in the aquarium setting.

Distribution and habitat

The flying fox is a bottom-dweller that is native to the fast-flowing foothill rivers and streams of the Thai-Malay Peninsula,
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in Southeast Asia.


Tank requirements

A 40-gallon or larger breeder tank lined with fine gravel or sand substrate is suitable for an average-sized flying fox fish. Being bottom-dwellers, the aquarium for flying foxes usually has broad-leaved plants, rocks, and driftwood to serve as hiding places. Because the flying fox is a known algae-eater, adequate lighting is preferred. Flying foxes can survive in aquarium water that has a pH of 6 to 7.5, a water hardness ranging from 2 to 12 dH, and temperatures kept at .Flying Fox (Epalzeorhynchos kalopterus), AquariumLife.net (undated)
retrieved on: August 20, 2007


Flying foxes are generally compatible with acaras, , barbs, danios, Geophagus, eartheaters, gouramis, Electric fish, knifefish, Loach (fish), loaches, tetras and rasboras. Aquarists may keep these fish alone or in schools, however a group of flying foxes may exhibit territorial behavior.

Life span

In the aquarium, flying foxes may live from eight to ten years.Dunder, Jonathan. Free Information Society, FreeInfoSociety.com (undated)
retrieved on: August 20, 2007


Mainly algae eaters, flying foxes also eat flakes, wafers and tablets. Vegetables such as spinach, zucchini and lettuce, as well as live planarians, tubifex worms, crustaceans and other aquatic insects, are excellent staples for these omnivores. They do not consume red algae.


Sex among flying foxes is difficult to determine, though as with most fish, mature females tend to be plumper and males more slender. Flying foxes are not known to breed in captivity.

Similar species

The flying fox is similar to the (''Crossocheilus oblongus'') and the Cambodian Logsucker, false flying fox (''Garra cambodgiensis'') when young.Flying Fox Information, The Aquarium Wiki Encyclopaedia
retrieved on: March 1st, 2008




Epalzeorhynchos kalopterus (Bleeker, 1851), Taxonomic Serial No.: 639590, ITIS.gov, 2007
retrieved on: August 21, 2007 *AquariumWiki:Epalzeorhynchos kalopterus, Epalzeorhynchos kalopterus on the Aquarium Wiki Encyclopaedia {{DEFAULTSORT:fox, flying Epalzeorhynchos, flying fox Taxa named by Pieter Bleeker Freshwater fish of Indonesia Fishkeeping Fish described in 1851, flying fox