How To Tell The Difference Between The Jardini Arowana Versus The Leichardti Arowana

As Americans, we can't legally keep Asian Arowanas so the Australian Arowana is the closest we can get to one in terms of body shape and temperament.

Many aspiring Arowana hobbyists have been asking us this question all the time when deciding which on which Arowana they should choose.  Often, the question is how to differentiate between both Aussie Arowanas: a Jardini and a Leichardti.

Leichardti Arowana (Scleropages leichardti) traits are as follows:

  • It has a straight dorsal profile with their head in line with the back
  • Their barbels point straight
  • Small red spots are visible the fins 
  • The prominent red spots are found in the middle of their scales
  • They have no patterns on their gill cover
  • Coloration is silver

Jardini Arowana (Scleropages jardini):

  • The dorsal profile is slightly curved and it has a head that is sloped down
  • Barbels are noticeably pointed downwards
  • Their fins have roughly 2-3 large red spots
  • Scales noticeably show red crescents
  • Their Gill covers have a noticeable pattern 
  • Coloration tends to be a dark bronze

The simplest method to distinguish between the two Arowanas is by glancing at the gills to see if the pattern is present.  It can be difficult to tell the difference between a Jardini and Leichardti from a quick glance but the moment you look analyze further, it becomes obvious which fish is which.  Throughout the years, the majority of experienced Arowana fish keepers do notice that the Leichardti tends to be less aggressive in temperament when compared to the Jardini, which we also find to be true.  We've kept some pretty mean Jardinis that would attack tank-mates bigger than them.

Here are pics of both the Jardini Aro and the Leichardti Aro (Jardini on top, Leichardti on bottom):

As hobbyists in this Arowana Fish Keeping World, we are always happy to help you out as we all grow together when knowledge is shared amongst all of us.

Feel free to reach out to us anytime for tips and pointers regarding anything Arowana fish related.


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