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Keeping Gars - A Short Review


If you take a quick look at this species they don't seem like aquarium fishes. They are large and highly predatory. But then again, these are qualities that attract some, like me! If you've been keeping aquariums for a while and have the room to keep large predatory fishes I recommend you try these fish, but not until you've done your homework and know the gars' requirements and what you are getting yourself into.

Species of gar:

Florida spotted gar, Lepisosteus platyrhinchus
A highly varied species of gar. Has more spots on its body and a shorter snout than many other gars. Easily mistaken for spotted gar.

Spotted gar, Lepisosteus oculatus
Long snout and spots. Spots to a higher degree towards the posterior of its body. Easily mistaken for Florida spotted gar.

Shortnosed gar, Lepisosteus platostomus
The shortnosed gar can be identified by its short snout, and by the lack of teeth rows in the upper jaw like the alligator gar, and the lack of spots on its body.

Long-nosed gar, Lepisosteus osseus
The long-nosed gar is, as the name suggests, identified by its long slender snout, and also by its slender body.

Alligator gar, Atractosteus spatula
The alligator gar has a short broad snout and two big rows of teeth in the upper jaw. This species is spotted on the posterior part of the body and to a lesser extent on other parts of the body.

Tropical gar, Atractosteus tropicus
A very rare species.

Manfari or Cuban gar, Atractosteus tristoechus
Looks very similar to the alligator gar and since it is very rare in the trade you can usually assume that your gar is an alligator gar and not a Cuban gar unless otherwise stated. The Cuban gar has a broader snout and lacks pattern on its body.

Beside these species there are a number of hybrids such as the crocodile gar.

Spotted, Florida and short-nosed gars are smaller than the other species and may be more suitable for aquariums. They usually don't grow larger than 2 feet in aquariums. Long-nosed and alligator gars grow to a very large size and larger ponds are recommended if you'd like to keep fully grown specimens. So if you don't have (or plan on getting) a large pond, stay with the smaller species. Even with the smaller species you are still going to need a rather large aquarium. The tropical gar also is possible to keep in aquariums as it doesn't grow as large; however this species is very hard to find. The Cuban gar is a red-list endangered species and shouldn't be kept even if you somehow find one.

In aquariums gars are quite demanding and require a lot of space and clean water. I recommend you to use as big a tank as you can for your gar, and I wouldn't recommend keeping gars in an aquarium smaller than 200 Gallon/720 L. And that should be considered a minimum; a 400 gallon/1400 L tank is preferable.

The tank should be decorated in accordance with gar behavior. Gars are ambush predators, and as such they appreciate hiding places from where they can stalk their prey. This is however not essential. They are very friendly towards fish that are too big to be eaten. In the wild gars often live in loose schools and if you have the space you may successfully keep several gars together, in fact I would recommend this.

Gars can be kept with most fishes that are too big to be considered food and not too aggressive. However, gars should never live with plecos. Plecos sometimes suck on gars and cause infections, and since gars are very sensitive to most medicines these infections may be very hard to treat.

Regarding water, the most important thing is keeping the water clean and well circulated. Gars accept most pH or hardness levels. Temperature can range from 60 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit (16 - 30 degrees Celsius). Gars breathe air and should be left with a few inches of space at the top of the tank to allow them to breathe atmospheric air.

Gars usually accept most kinds of living prey that are large enough. Feeders such as goldfish provide a good base for their diet but should never be the only thing they are fed, since this would not provide the gars with all necessary nutrition. Their diet should be diverse, and this can be achieved by also feeding minnows, shrimps etc. It is also possible to train gars to accept frozen foods and pellets.

Gars cannot be sexed externally. They have occasionally been breed in aquariums but are more frequently bred in ponds or are wild caught.

William berg has more then 20 years of aquarium experience and writes for aquatic community - a website with information on everything from crayfish to cichlids.


TODAYS NEWS BY OFFICEJAX FREE ADVERTISING AND AD EXCHANGE SOLUTIONSMORE PETS INFORMATION RESOURCES updated Thu. May / 13 / 2021

Managing Pets With Tech: Crowdfunding PetCode - Forbes
Managing Pets With Tech: Crowdfunding PetCode  Forbes

Pets are being returned to Tampa Bay shelters after pandemic adoption boom - Tampa Bay Times
Pets are being returned to Tampa Bay shelters after pandemic adoption boom  Tampa Bay Times

In China, Deaths of Mail-Order Pets in Mystery Boxes Set Off a Backlash - The New York Times
In China, Deaths of Mail-Order Pets in Mystery Boxes Set Off a Backlash  The New York Times

Pets of the Week: May 12, 2021 - WSIL TV
Pets of the Week: May 12, 2021  WSIL TV

The shocking amount of money people spend on their pets annually - Glens Falls Post-Star
The shocking amount of money people spend on their pets annually  Glens Falls Post-Star

Second Chance Pets: Tamago - KOIN.com
Second Chance Pets: Tamago  KOIN.com

Separation anxiety possible for pets as owners return to work - SILive.com
Separation anxiety possible for pets as owners return to work  SILive.com

Meet our pets of the week: Two cats and a pony - STLtoday.com
Meet our pets of the week: Two cats and a pony  STLtoday.com

Pets of the Week - Chico Enterprise-Record
Pets of the Week  Chico Enterprise-Record

Pets experience separation anxiety as people return to work - WKRC TV Cincinnati
Pets experience separation anxiety as people return to work  WKRC TV Cincinnati

Protecting your kids, pets from summertime nuisances - KWCH
Protecting your kids, pets from summertime nuisances  KWCH

COVID-19 pet boom has veterinarians backlogged, burned out - The Macomb Daily
COVID-19 pet boom has veterinarians backlogged, burned out  The Macomb Daily

Joe Pisani (opinion): Is there an afterlife for our pets? - The Advocate
Joe Pisani (opinion): Is there an afterlife for our pets?  The Advocate

Dogs in front row, pets in Santa hats, a WooSox fan reading a book: A look at the top cutouts at Polar Park f - MassLive.com
Dogs in front row, pets in Santa hats, a WooSox fan reading a book: A look at the top cutouts at Polar Park f  MassLive.com

People let their pets decide who they date, new survey suggests - Fox News
People let their pets decide who they date, new survey suggests  Fox News

Tampa Bay area pets looking for forever homes - Tampa Bay Times
Tampa Bay area pets looking for forever homes  Tampa Bay Times

Pets on the Plaza: Meet Tuesday - 47abc - WMDT
Pets on the Plaza: Meet Tuesday - 47abc  WMDT

They fell in love with their pandemic pets. Now they don’t want to leave them. - Seattle Times
They fell in love with their pandemic pets. Now they don’t want to leave them.  Seattle Times

'Excruciatingly sad': Shelters bracing for 'selfish' return of pandemic pets - New York Post
'Excruciatingly sad': Shelters bracing for 'selfish' return of pandemic pets  New York Post

Animal shelters see slight uptick in rehoming of pets - WBAY
Animal shelters see slight uptick in rehoming of pets  WBAY

Pet connections: A Central Coast social media group assists in pet shelter adoptions - New Times SLO
Pet connections: A Central Coast social media group assists in pet shelter adoptions  New Times SLO

Amazon Reviewers Love This Ottoman That Secretly Doubles as a Hideaway for Cats - PEOPLE.com
Amazon Reviewers Love This Ottoman That Secretly Doubles as a Hideaway for Cats  PEOPLE.com

Pets adopted during the pandemic are being returned in record numbers - New York Post
Pets adopted during the pandemic are being returned in record numbers  New York Post

These Small and Cuddly Pets Are Perfect For Busy College Students - POPSUGAR
These Small and Cuddly Pets Are Perfect For Busy College Students  POPSUGAR

Pandemic pet boom has veterinarians busier than ever - KLBK | KAMC | EverythingLubbock.com
Pandemic pet boom has veterinarians busier than ever  KLBK | KAMC | EverythingLubbock.com

Alachua County Pets: Scout, Fable, and Blitz - WCJB
Alachua County Pets: Scout, Fable, and Blitz  WCJB

Pet of the Week: Henry - KARK
Pet of the Week: Henry  KARK

Four Seasons Plumbing celebrates National Pet Month - PRNewswire
Four Seasons Plumbing celebrates National Pet Month  PRNewswire

The cat who adopted us: Send us your pet rescue stories - cleveland.com
The cat who adopted us: Send us your pet rescue stories  cleveland.com

Pets adopted during the pandemic are being returned at record numbers: report - FOX 13 Tampa Bay
Pets adopted during the pandemic are being returned at record numbers: report  FOX 13 Tampa Bay

A Pet Food Partnership for Our Community | Elf | sentinelsource.com - The Keene Sentinel
A Pet Food Partnership for Our Community | Elf | sentinelsource.com  The Keene Sentinel

As more people return to work, more pets returned to shelters — but not in Chicago - WGN TV Chicago
As more people return to work, more pets returned to shelters — but not in Chicago  WGN TV Chicago

People Are Returning Their Pandemic Pets at Alarming Rates - Yahoo Lifestyle
People Are Returning Their Pandemic Pets at Alarming Rates  Yahoo Lifestyle

Pandemic Pet Boom Drives Group Nine Media’s Ad Comeback - Adweek
Pandemic Pet Boom Drives Group Nine Media’s Ad Comeback  Adweek

Pets of the week: Jagger is carefree. Milo is a happy, chatty attention-seeker - MLive.com
Pets of the week: Jagger is carefree. Milo is a happy, chatty attention-seeker  MLive.com

Boston News Crew Spots and Saves Stolen Dog During Segment on the Missing Pet - PEOPLE
Boston News Crew Spots and Saves Stolen Dog During Segment on the Missing Pet  PEOPLE

People Are Surrendering Their “Pandemic Pets” — Here's How to Rehome a Dog - Green Matters
People Are Surrendering Their “Pandemic Pets” — Here's How to Rehome a Dog  Green Matters

At Arizona Pet Project's resource center in south Phoenix, the focus is on humans and pets - The Arizona Republic
At Arizona Pet Project's resource center in south Phoenix, the focus is on humans and pets  The Arizona Republic

Adoptable pets from Arizona Humane Society and Maricopa County Animal Care (5/12/21) - ABC15 Arizona
Adoptable pets from Arizona Humane Society and Maricopa County Animal Care (5/12/21)  ABC15 Arizona

Permit approved for pet day care, boarding business - Evening Observer
Permit approved for pet day care, boarding business  Evening Observer

Pets meant to bring companionship during pandemic are being brought back to animal rescues - WRGB
Pets meant to bring companionship during pandemic are being brought back to animal rescues  WRGB

PFAS found at high levels in pets near Chemours plant - NC Health News - North Carolina Health News
PFAS found at high levels in pets near Chemours plant - NC Health News  North Carolina Health News

Pet food pantry growing and helping more pets across west Michigan - Fox17
Pet food pantry growing and helping more pets across west Michigan  Fox17

Creative Acres Sanctuary founder says owners are giving up 'pandemic pets' as they head back to work - The Denver Channel
Creative Acres Sanctuary founder says owners are giving up 'pandemic pets' as they head back to work  The Denver Channel

Area art students draw pet portraits for All Faiths Pantry’s spring fundraiser - cleveland.com
Area art students draw pet portraits for All Faiths Pantry’s spring fundraiser  cleveland.com

Australia Pet Food Markets Report 2020: Historical Years 2015-2018 / Base Year of 2019 / Estimated Year of 2020 / Forecast Period 2020-2025 - Yahoo Finance
Australia Pet Food Markets Report 2020: Historical Years 2015-2018 / Base Year of 2019 / Estimated Year of 2020 / Forecast Period 2020-2025  Yahoo Finance

Secondhand Hounds Rescue Merges With People & Pets Together Food Shelf - Twin Cities Business Magazine
Secondhand Hounds Rescue Merges With People & Pets Together Food Shelf  Twin Cities Business Magazine

Pets of the Week at Pasadena Humane - Pasadena Now
Pets of the Week at Pasadena Humane  Pasadena Now

Take a Look at the Official Pets and Animals of Every State - msnNOW
Take a Look at the Official Pets and Animals of Every State  msnNOW

CitrusAd Launches Retail Media Technology on Petco.com - Business Wire
CitrusAd Launches Retail Media Technology on Petco.com  Business Wire

Pet of the week | GUIDON - Myguidon
Pet of the week | GUIDON  Myguidon

Arlington Pet of the Week: Hank - ARLnow
Arlington Pet of the Week: Hank  ARLnow

Store pets can be a pull for some Downtown businesses - News-Press Now
Store pets can be a pull for some Downtown businesses  News-Press Now

Exotic pets are in the spotlight at expo in Chesapeake - 13newsnow.com WVEC
Exotic pets are in the spotlight at expo in Chesapeake  13newsnow.com WVEC

Independent Pet Partners Announces New Pet Wellness Store Opening in Houston, TX - Southernminn.com
Independent Pet Partners Announces New Pet Wellness Store Opening in Houston, TX  Southernminn.com

Global Pet Accessories Market 2021-2025 - Technology Innovation and Portfolio Extension Leading to Product Premiumization - ResearchAndMarkets.com - Business Wire
Global Pet Accessories Market 2021-2025 - Technology Innovation and Portfolio Extension Leading to Product Premiumization - ResearchAndMarkets.com  Business Wire

Texas ChainPaw Is Adoption for Horror Film Lookalike Pets - Yahoo Lifestyle
Texas ChainPaw Is Adoption for Horror Film Lookalike Pets  Yahoo Lifestyle

How Losing a Pet Can Make You Stronger - The New York Times
How Losing a Pet Can Make You Stronger  The New York Times

Mail-order pet craze in China blamed for truck full of dead, distressed animals - New York Post
Mail-order pet craze in China blamed for truck full of dead, distressed animals  New York Post

Shelter pets find new forever homes thanks to recent adoption events - 69News WFMZ-TV
Shelter pets find new forever homes thanks to recent adoption events  69News WFMZ-TV

Miller Hill Mall to welcome new pet boutique, host horse fair this Saturday - Duluth News Tribune
Miller Hill Mall to welcome new pet boutique, host horse fair this Saturday  Duluth News Tribune

Pet Cats Fall For Optical Illusions Too - NPR
Pet Cats Fall For Optical Illusions Too  NPR

Man's best friend in life and death: Pet dog brain banking supports aging research - EurekAlert
Man's best friend in life and death: Pet dog brain banking supports aging research  EurekAlert

‘The Traveling Zoo’: Life on the Road, With Pets at Their Side - The New York Times
‘The Traveling Zoo’: Life on the Road, With Pets at Their Side  The New York Times

10 Eco-Friendly Pet Products to Help You Celebrate Earth Day with Your Cat or Dog - PEOPLE
10 Eco-Friendly Pet Products to Help You Celebrate Earth Day with Your Cat or Dog  PEOPLE

Vegan couple banned from owning pets after feeding their severely malnourished puppies a meat-free diet - Yahoo! Voices
Vegan couple banned from owning pets after feeding their severely malnourished puppies a meat-free diet  Yahoo! Voices

Tampa Bay area pets hope to share their love with you - Tampa Bay Times
Tampa Bay area pets hope to share their love with you  Tampa Bay Times

NAWS Adoptable Pet Of The Week: Cupid - Patch.com
NAWS Adoptable Pet Of The Week: Cupid  Patch.com

Tampa Bay area pets looking for loving homes - Tampa Bay Times
Tampa Bay area pets looking for loving homes  Tampa Bay Times

Pet Talk: What to know about owning exotic pets - Bryan-College Station Eagle
Pet Talk: What to know about owning exotic pets  Bryan-College Station Eagle

The Unshakeable Interspecies Bond of Pet Moms - Vogue
The Unshakeable Interspecies Bond of Pet Moms  Vogue

National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day: 40 essentials for new pet owners - New York Post
National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day: 40 essentials for new pet owners  New York Post

Are our pets fueling climate change and environmental hazards? - Vox
Are our pets fueling climate change and environmental hazards?  Vox

Vote 4 the Best: Pets - Voting - WDIV ClickOnDetroit
Vote 4 the Best: Pets - Voting  WDIV ClickOnDetroit

Your pets can catch coronavirus, but don't spread it - Spectrum News 1
Your pets can catch coronavirus, but don't spread it  Spectrum News 1

5 arrested after Lady Gaga's dog walker shot, pets kidnapped: Police - ABC News
5 arrested after Lady Gaga's dog walker shot, pets kidnapped: Police  ABC News

Here's What's Going On When You Catch Your Dog Licking Your Furniture . . . Again - POPSUGAR
Here's What's Going On When You Catch Your Dog Licking Your Furniture . . . Again  POPSUGAR

Need More Cute Animal Content? Follow the Pets of Netflix's Pet Stars on Instagram! - POPSUGAR
Need More Cute Animal Content? Follow the Pets of Netflix's Pet Stars on Instagram!  POPSUGAR

7 families displaced, pet dog dies in Athens apartment fire - WRCB-TV
7 families displaced, pet dog dies in Athens apartment fire  WRCB-TV

Pet and shopping scams surge during pandemic - BBC News
Pet and shopping scams surge during pandemic  BBC News

Pet Wise: Grooming pets provides health and safety benefits - Baltimore Sun
Pet Wise: Grooming pets provides health and safety benefits  Baltimore Sun

Pet Pals TV: Horse therapy helps those struggling with adversities - WISHTV.com
Pet Pals TV: Horse therapy helps those struggling with adversities  WISHTV.com

Is your student stressed? They should pet a therapy dog, study suggests - KXLY Spokane
Is your student stressed? They should pet a therapy dog, study suggests  KXLY Spokane

Petco Love Launches Game-Changing Centralized Solution To Help Reunite Lost Pets With Their Families - PRNewswire
Petco Love Launches Game-Changing Centralized Solution To Help Reunite Lost Pets With Their Families  PRNewswire

Louisiana House leaders direct millions of dollars to pet projects - Greater Baton Rouge Business Report
Louisiana House leaders direct millions of dollars to pet projects  Greater Baton Rouge Business Report

NYS Senate passes bill banning pet stores from selling dogs, cats and rabbits - WPIX 11 New York
NYS Senate passes bill banning pet stores from selling dogs, cats and rabbits  WPIX 11 New York

My friend set up a GoFundMe to pay for her sick pet, instead of getting a refund on our vacation. I canceled the trip. Who’s right? - MarketWatch
My friend set up a GoFundMe to pay for her sick pet, instead of getting a refund on our vacation. I canceled the trip. Who’s right?  MarketWatch

Americans Adopted Fewer Pets From Shelters in 2020 - The Bark
Americans Adopted Fewer Pets From Shelters in 2020  The Bark

MoreDuckies: Bitcoin's first digital pet game - CoinGeek
MoreDuckies: Bitcoin's first digital pet game  CoinGeek

Empty the Shelters: Fees slashed at Oakland County Pet Adoption Center this week - FOX 2 Detroit
Empty the Shelters: Fees slashed at Oakland County Pet Adoption Center this week  FOX 2 Detroit

Greece's New Pet Law May Threaten Ancient Greek Dog Breed Alopekis - Greek Reporter
Greece's New Pet Law May Threaten Ancient Greek Dog Breed Alopekis  Greek Reporter

How To Compare Pet Insurance Quotes – Forbes Advisor - Forbes
How To Compare Pet Insurance Quotes – Forbes Advisor  Forbes

Barron’s Stock Pick: Pet Care Is Booming. Here’s a Stock to Play It. - Barron's
Barron’s Stock Pick: Pet Care Is Booming. Here’s a Stock to Play It.  Barron's

Pet Food Companies Look to the Future With Cell-Cultured Meat - Modern Farmer
Pet Food Companies Look to the Future With Cell-Cultured Meat  Modern Farmer

How Pet Medical Insurance Works - Forbes
How Pet Medical Insurance Works  Forbes

Kibble Closet seeking pet food donations - Valley Breeze
Kibble Closet seeking pet food donations  Valley Breeze

Man Who Was Previously Charged with Murder Is Allegedly on the Run with Pet Tiger Spotted Roaming Houston - PEOPLE
Man Who Was Previously Charged with Murder Is Allegedly on the Run with Pet Tiger Spotted Roaming Houston  PEOPLE

Does Your Pet Have Separation Anxiety? Or Do You? - The New York Times
Does Your Pet Have Separation Anxiety? Or Do You?  The New York Times

Paws Abilities, a locally-owned pet store, now open on 41st Street - KELOLAND.com
Paws Abilities, a locally-owned pet store, now open on 41st Street  KELOLAND.com

Bill would ban sales of dogs, cats, rabbits at pet stores - Newsday
Bill would ban sales of dogs, cats, rabbits at pet stores  Newsday

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