What in the world is an arapaima?

Education & Training with Realty Group Referrals 16766

What in the world is an arapaima?

A big fish story


The answer to this question may be found at the Amazonia Exhibit at the National Zoo in Washington, DC.  Arapaima are among the largest freshwater fish in the world and several may be seen in the 55,000 gallon aquarium in the Amazonia Exhibit.

Individual arapaima are typically six to seven feet long but can reach eight feet or more. The scales are large and the mouth is turned up because they feed at the surface of the water. These fish are found in the Amazon in South America. The arapaima is a predator and they eat chopped fish along with a prepared diet at the National Zoo.

Arapaima are very unfishlike in that they are air breathers that stay submerged for 10 to 20 minutes at a time. This tendency to stay at the surface makes them vulnerable to hunters with harpoons.



Arapaima, Amazonia, National Zoo IMG_9609

Canon PowerShot G11 Camera

Photograph by Roy Kelley 

Roy and Dolores Kelley Photographs

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Roy and Dolores Kelley Photographs

Roy Kelley and Associates


Roy Kelley, Associate Broker

Realty Group Referrals (Retired from RE/MAX Realty Group)

6 Montgomery Village Ave., Suite 200

Gaithersburg, MD 20879

Main Office:  301-258-7757 (You will not reach me at this number)

Send an email message if you need my phone numbers. I will be happy to recommend a real estate professional if you are moving to the area.


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Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

Very interesting looking fish, Roy!  When I first saw that name, "Arapaima," I thought it would be a really good name for an airline.

Sep 10, 2018 03:03 AM #1
Nina Hollander
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

Good morning, Roy... is this a big fish story, or a fishy story! (Just kidding!) Never heard of these fish before and 8 feet is awfully large... that's the great thing about AR... something new to be learned each day.

Sep 10, 2018 03:44 AM #3
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

Very interesting, Roy.  I had not heard of these arapaima before.  I'm glad they aren't swimming around in the rivers around my home.

Sep 10, 2018 04:52 AM #5
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning Roy. Must admit did not know about this fish. Very interesting. Thanks. Enjoy your day!

Sep 10, 2018 04:57 AM #6
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce

I don't know that anyone will ever ask me,...but just in case...now I know !

Sep 10, 2018 05:45 AM #8
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Roy, that was a new one, had never heard of this before.   Have not been to an aquarium for quite some time.

Sep 10, 2018 06:09 AM #9
Scott Godzyk
Godzyk Real Estate Services - Manchester, NH
One of Manchester NH's Leading Agents

I learned something new, thanks for sharing the pictures and story of the Arapaima Roy

Sep 10, 2018 06:14 AM #10
Brian England
Arizona Focus Realty - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

Very interesting, I had not heard of that type of fish before today.  When I visit the aquarium, I always learn about fish I had never heard of.

Sep 10, 2018 06:43 AM #11
Organized Living Interiors
United States - Orlando, FL
Staging & Design

Good morning, Roy.  Thank you for this interesting post.  I learned something new about fish today.  Have a great rest of your week! - Jasmine Tsang, Business Manager @Organized Living Interiors.

Sep 10, 2018 07:28 AM #12
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


This is the first time I have heard of this fish.  What a great story, and like every day I learned something new..A

Sep 10, 2018 09:26 AM #14
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good morning Roy - this is really educational.  I would love to go to the National Zoo.

Sep 10, 2018 09:41 AM #15
Gene Mundt, IL/WI Mortgage Originator - FHA/VA/Conv/Jumbo/Portfolio/Refi
NMLS #216987, IL Lic. 031.0006220, WI Licensed. APMC NMLS #175656 - New Lenox, IL
708.921.6331 - 40+ yrs experience

This fish ... this aquarium ... sounds like something my grandson needs to check out, Roy Kelley.  He LOVES to see and read about sea life.  Passing your info on to him ... 

I always learn something from your posts, Roy!


Sep 10, 2018 09:58 AM #16
Lee Potts
Aloha Group Maui - Lahaina, HI
The smarter we work, the luckier you get.

Very interesting and a nice shot Roy Kelley

Sep 11, 2018 05:32 PM #18
Debbie Reynolds
Platinum Properties - Clarksville, TN
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent

How interesting Roy. Did you and Dolores take a trip to the Zoo recently?

Sep 11, 2018 08:20 PM #19
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Roy --- it's true, we can learn something new at ActiveRain everyday. Thank you for sharing. By the way --- a trip to the National Zoo has many photo opportunities. 

Sep 16, 2018 12:05 PM #21
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Thanks so much for your comments and for your continued support.

Sep 16, 2018 12:09 PM #22
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