Featherfin squeaker Care Guide: Diet, Tank Mates, Diseases, Breeding & More

Updated: October 25, 2022

The featherfin squeaker is a peaceful, social, and hardy fish that makes a great addition to any freshwater tank.

This species is known for being a great beginner fish, as they’re very easy to care for. They’re also very affordable, which is another reason why they’re so popular.

But even though they’re easy to care for, there are still some things you need to know before you get one. In this guide, we’ll teach you everything you need to know about featherfin squeaker care.

You’ll learn about their diet, tank mates, lifespan, and more!

Species overview

Featherfin squeakers (Synodontis eupterus) are a type of catfish that’s native to Africa. They’re most commonly found in the Congo River basin but have also been seen in other parts of the continent such as Sudan, Ethiopia, and Kenya.

This fish prefers to live in slow-moving water with a lot of vegetation. They’re also known to be quite adaptable and can survive in a wide range of different water conditions.

One of the most notable things about featherfin squeakers is their long fins. As you can probably guess, these fins are quite sensitive and can be easily damaged. Because of this, it’s important to be careful when handling them and to make sure that their tank has plenty of places for them to hide.

These fish are also known for being quite peaceful and are a good choice for community tanks.


Featherfin squeaker

The Featherfin Squeaker is an elongated and laterally compressed fish. It has a small mouth that is located at the tip of the snout. The body is covered with small, cycloid scales.

The coloration of the Featherfin Squeaker is variable, but they are typically some shade of brown or green, with a few dark vertical bars on the body. The fins are brown or green, with the exception of the adipose fin, which is orange. The caudal peduncle is orange, and the caudal fin has a dark blotch in the center.

The Featherfin Squeaker grows to a maximum length of 15 cm (6 in).


Featherfin squeakers have a lifespan of 5 to 10 years. The lifespan of a featherfin squeaker can be greatly increased or decreased based on the care they receive.

Good water quality and a stress-free environment are key to a long life for these fish. Unfortunately, they are often kept in poor conditions which can lead to a shortened lifespan.


Featherfin squeakers only grow to be about 4 inches in length.


Tank Size

The recommended minimum tank size for a featherfin squeaker is 30 gallons. If you want to keep more than one fish, you should add at least an additional 10 gallons per fish.

These fish are semi-aggressive and need plenty of space to swim. They also like to dig in the sand and uproot plants, so you need to make sure you have a tank that can accommodate their needs.

Water Parameters

The featherfin squeaker is a freshwater fish that is native to Africa. They are found in rivers and lakes with sandy bottoms. The water is typically murky with little to no vegetation.

In the aquarium, they do best in water with the following parameters:

  • Water temperature: 75 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit
  • pH levels: 6.5 to 7.5
  • Water hardness: 5 to 15 dGH
  • Alkalinity Levels: 4-8 dKH

What To Put In Their Tank

The Featherfin Squeaker is a freshwater fish that’s native to Africa. In the wild, they can be found in rivers and streams with a sandy substrate.

This species does best in an aquarium that’s at least 30 gallons in size. If you’re keeping them with other fish then you might need a bit more room.

When it comes to the substrate, sand is the way to go. These fish love to sift through it and look for food. They might even eat some of the sand itself (it’s not harmful to them).

As for plants, they’re not really a necessity. If you want to include some then go for it, but don’t feel obligated. Driftwood and rocks are a better choice since they provide hiding places for your fish.

The Featherfin Squeaker is a social fish that does best in groups. We recommend keeping at least 6 of them together. If you have a larger tank then you can go with even more.

Common Diseases

These fish are quite hardy and don’t often get sick. However, like all animals, they are susceptible to disease if they are kept in poor conditions or if they come in contact with sick fish.

The most common disease that affects featherfin squeakers is ich. This is a parasitic infection that is very common in freshwater fish. It’s caused by a single-celled organism that burrows into the skin of the fish and causes white spots to form.

If left untreated, ich can be fatal. However, it is fairly easy to treat with medication.

Another disease that can affect these fish is hole-in-the-head disease. This is caused by poor water quality and the presence of activated carbon in the tank.

It will cause pits or holes to form in the skin of the fish, usually around the head. While it is not usually fatal, it can cause a lot of discomfort for your fish.

The best way to prevent these diseases is to maintain clean and stable water conditions in the tank. A well-maintained tank will lead to healthier fish who are more resistant to disease.

Behavior & Temperament

The Featherfin Squeaker is a peaceful, hardy, and sociable fish that does well in a community aquarium. It is an active swimmer and does best in a tank with plenty of open swimming space.

Unlike many other catfish, the Featherfin Squeaker is not a nocturnal fish and is most active during the day. It is an omnivore and will eat most aquarium foods, including flakes, pellets, frozen, and live foods.

This catfish is peaceful and can be kept with a wide variety of tank mates, including other catfish, cichlids, barbs, and tetras. It is not aggressive and is not known to bother other fish or eat their food.

The Featherfin Squeaker is a hardy fish that is not difficult to care for. It is tolerant of a wide range of water conditions and is not susceptible to most diseases.

Tank Mates

Featherfin squeakers are peaceful, but they can be a bit nippy. They’re also known to eat smaller fish and invertebrates.

For these reasons, it’s best to keep them with other peaceful fish that are too large to be eaten.

Some compatible tank mates for featherfin squeakers include:

  • Rainbowfish
  • Tetras
  • Gouramis
  • Barbs
  • Danios
  • Livebearers
  • Corydoras Catfish


The Featherfin squeaker is a mouthbrooding cichlid, which means that the female will carry the eggs and fry in her mouth until they are ready to be released.

This species is pretty easy to breed in captivity as long as you provide them with the right habitat and water conditions.

The first step is to sex the fish. Males and females have similar colors, but males tend to be a bit larger and have more elongated fins.

When ready to breed, the female will lay her eggs in a pit that the male has dug. Once the eggs have been fertilized, the male will guard them until they hatch.

At that point, the female will pick up the fry in her mouth and carry them around until they are ready to be released.

You don’t need to do anything special to trigger spawning. Just make sure that the fish are well-fed and the water quality is good.

To improve the chances of success, you can use a breeder box. This is a small tank or enclosure that the fry can be moved to once they’ve hatched. This will protect them from being eaten by the adults.


The Featherfin Squeaker is an excellent choice for the beginning aquarist. They’re very easy to take care of and are very peaceful, making them a great addition to any community tank.

We highly recommend this fish to anyone who is looking for a low-maintenance pet that will still provide a lot of enjoyment.

Happy fish keeping!