Murray Cod (Maccullochella peelii) are a massive fish with a long, thick, round bodies and large mouth. They are a green colour from the top of their backs to the bottom of their body. Their belly is a bright silver or white in colour. They have olive green spots all down the sides of their body.
The Murray Cod is native to Australia and is found throughout the Murray Darling basin and surrounding catchment. They generally inhabit slow flowing areas of rivers, in and around submerged structures.
The Murray Cod can reach a maximum length of 100cm and can live for up to 50 years in the wild. If properly housed and given the right conditions, they are long lived in captivity as well.
Due to their large size and rapid growth rate, Murray Cod should be housed in the largest aquarium possible from the beginning. If you purchase a juvenile this may look odd initially, however, rest assured the Murray Cod will quickly fill the space. A 6ft x 2ft x 2ft aquarium is the minimum tank size recommended, however, adults are best suited to large ponds.
Murray Cod accept a wide range of water parameters, including a pH of between 7.0 and 8.0 and a general hardness between 50 and 200ppm. They also accept a wide range of temperatures, with temperatures between 8°C and 24°C being suitable.
Murray Cod are carnivorous and will eat a range of different foods including live fish, yabbies and other crustaceans – as long as it fits in the mouth of the fish it will eat it! They will also readily accept pellets and frozen foods in the aquarium.
Due to their large size, Murray Cod are best kept individually. Murray Cod have enormous mouths and anything that can fit in their mouths will be eaten. As juveniles they can make good tank mates for golden perch, silver perch, tandanus catfish, some gudgeons and larger goldfish. However, Murray Cod are fast growers and it is likely that within the space of a few years these fish will also become dinner.
There are no physical differences between the male and female Murray Cod. The only differences are internal so it is difficult to determine the sex.
This article was sponsored by Nature at Work.