Vietnam - Asian arowana prices


Arowana blogger
A link to the full article excerpted below can be found here:

Asian arowana retail prices in Ho Chi Minh City
Common name Size Cm Price $
Cross-backed golden arowana 20 750-1250
Super red arowana 20 550-1250 Red-tailed golden arowana 16 220
Banja red arowana 16 100
Green arowana 16 50
Silver Asian arowana 16 10

Dragon fishes
Until early this century, the endangered Asian bonytongue (Scleropages formosus), known as dragon fish in the aquarium trade, was thought to be the only arowana species indigenous to Asia. According to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN), the species is native to Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Viet Nam and possibly Myanmar as well. In 2003, however, European and Indonesian scientists described three new species within Scleropages formosus that are all native to Indonesia. These are Scleropages legendrei, known as the super red arowana, Scleropages aureus, commonly referred to as the red-tailed golden arowana and Scleropages macrocephalus, the silver Asian arowana (not to be confused with the silver arowana Osteoglossum bicirrhosum which is native to South America). Scleropages formosus itself was found to be restricted to the more common green arowana. While it was previously thought that the colours represented different varieties of the same species, genetic analysis backed up by morphological data proved otherwise.

Since imports and exports of the Asian bonytongue are restricted under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna (CITES), captive breeding programmes in Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia now meet the demands of the aquarium trade. Super reds command premium prices. Hoang Manh Long, the owner of Hong Anh Aquarium in Ho Chi Minh City, says a 20 cm individual can fetch up to $1,250, almost six times the average retail price for a slightly smaller red-tailed arowana (see table above). Hybrids formed by crossing super red and green arowanas retail for about $100 for a 16 cm individual, twice as much as the pure green species. Although he doesn’t sell silver Asian arowanas, Mr Long says they’re widely available in Ho Chi Minh City for about $10 each. The cross-backed golden arowana, a variety that occurs only in Bukit Merah in the Malaysian state of Perak, commands prices similar to those for the super red species.

Among CITES-registered Singapore breeders supplying tagged arowanas to Viet Nam are Imperial Arowana Breeding Farm Pte Ltd and Fu Long Holdings Pte Ltd, formed by the merger of Sing Arowanas Pte Ltd and Pang Long Pte Ltd in 2007. Mr Long says Singapore farms have successfully bred all Asian arowanas except the super reds which are farmed only in Indonesia or Malaysia. On the other hand, the cross-backed golden variety is farmed only in Singapore and Malaysia. Mr Long himself says he became interested in arowanas while studying graphic design in Singapore. Today, his arowana shop is a sideline to his main business of exporting ceramics.

Further reading
Pouyaud, L. et al (2003) The different colour varieties of the Asian arowana Scleropages formosus (Osteoglossidae) are distinct species: Morphologic and genetic evidences, Cybium, Vol 27, No 4

Rowley, J. J. L. et al (2008) Harvest, trade and conservation of the Asian arowana Scleropages formosus in Cambodia, Aquatic Conservation Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems. 18: 1255-1262

Suleiman, M. Z. (2003) Breeding technique of Malaysian golden arowana Scleropages formosus in concrete tanks, Aquaculture Asia, Vol VIII, No 3[/quote]
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