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Anabas testudineus – Diagram, Habit & Habitat, Characters- Climbing Perch

In this article of Anabas, we will learn 1. The systematic position, 2. Habit and Habitat, 3. Food and Feeding, 4. Diagram of Anabas, 5. Identifying Characters of Anabas, 6. Breeding/Reproduction, 7. Ecological Importance and 8. Economic Importance. The common name of Anabas is “Climbing Perch”, “Koi”, etc.


Systematic Position of Anabas

Kingdom: Animalia

  Phylum: Chordata

    Subphylum: Vertebrata

      Class: Osteichthyes

        Order: Perciformes

           Family: Anabantidae

              Genus: Anabas

                 Species: Anabas testudineus


Habit and Habitat

1. They are native fish of South and East Asia.

2. Found in mainly Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Srilanka, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia and the Philippines.

3. They live in the fresh and brakish water.

4. They are found in rivers, canals, lakes, ponds, paddy fields etc.

5. Climbing Perch have an accessory air breathing organ, the labyrinth organ.

6. The labyrinth organ is located above the gills.

7. With the help of this labyrinth organ, they can tolerate low oxygen level and a long period out of water if they kept in the moist.

8. They can pass 6-8 hours outside the water with the help of labyrinth organ.

9. Anabas is able to walk on land by spines of the operculum.


Food and Feeding

1. They are carnivorous.

2. They are predatory on shrimps, ostracods, gastropod shells and young fishes.

3. They feed on mainly insects, insect larvae, fry fishes etc.

4. Sometimes they come to the land and walk with the spines of operculum in search of earthworms.


Diagram of Anabas/Climbing perch


Diagram of anabas-climbing perch



Identifying Characters of Anabas

1. Body elongated and laterally compressed.

2. Body length is 15-20 cm.

3. Mouth is anterior and lower jaw slightly longer.

4. Head is conical containing large eyes, nostrils and mouth.

5. Teeth are present.

6. Teeth are villiform type.

7. Five types of fins present and they are dorsal, pectoral, pelvic, anal and caudal.

8. Dorsal and anal fins are long.

9. Base of soft dorsal fin, pectoral fin, soft anal fin and caudal fin are covered by scales.

10. Body color dark to pale greenish, very pale below, back dusky to olive.

11. Body form variable, affected by age and amount of food consumed.

12. Scales present on the body.

13. Scales are large and ctenoid. They are regularly arranged and ciliate.

14. Lateral line present but interrupted.

15. Dorsal, pelvic and anal fin rays are modified to spines.

16. Body is divided into head, trunk and tail.

17. Caudal fin not forked and perfectly symmetrical.

18. Fin formula: D. 17-18 /8-10, P1. 15,  P2. 1/5, A. 9-10/9-11 (Bhuiyan, 1982).


Breeding / Reproduction

1. Breeding season starts from April and continues till July.

2. Eggs are pelagic.

3. Fertilization external.

4. Eggs float over the surface.

5. Eggs hatch at 28.5 degree celsius temperature. 

6. It takes almost 18 hours to hatch the eggs.

7. Females do not exhibit parental care. The males exhibit parental care.


Ecological Importance

1. They are the part of freshwater ecosystem.

2. They live in rivers, canals, streams, ponds, paddy fields etc.

3. They are carnivorous.

4. They usually feed on insects, insect larvae, fry fishes etc.

5. Sometimes they are predatory on the shrimps and small fishes.

6. They are eaten by monster fishes, aquatic birds and other aquatic animals like snakes.

7. They are also eaten by humans.


Economic Importance

1. It has a very high demand in the local fish market.

2. This species is very important as a food fish in Bangladesh, India and other countries.

3. This fish is very suitable for cultivation in ponds and rice fields. Many farmers cultivate them also.

4. Fish farmers cultivate this fish and sell them to the local market and putting an important role in the country’s GDP.

5. This fish has recently introduced as ornamental fish and many native fishkeepers keep them as pet.


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Characters of Anabas

Read more:

1. Ompok pabda – Habitat, Characters, Economic Importance and Diagram.

2. Mystus cavasius – Diagram | Habit and Habitat, Identifying Characteristics, Economic and Ecological Importance

3. Mystus tengara – Habit and Habitat, Identifying Characteristics, Economic and Ecological Importance.



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Characters of Anabas

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