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"WOW!!! I caught an arapaima! This thing is huge!" —Animal Crossing (GCN)
"I caught an arapaima! It's big... and kinda gross!" —Wild World
"I caught an arapaima! It's about time-a!" —City Folk
"I caught an arapaima! And it looks like it's in its prime-a!" —New Leaf
"I caught an arapaima! How did it get here? Arapaiknow!" —New Horizons
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Scientific name Arapaima gigas
Family Osteoglossidae
Time of year July to September[nb 1]
June to September[nb 2]
December to March[nb 3]
Time of day 4 p.m. to 9 a.m.
Location River
Size 79 inches (300 centimeters)
Shadow size Huge
Rarity Rare
Selling price 10,000 Bells
Main Appearances
Other Appearances

The Arapaima (ピラルク, Piraruku) is a river fish that appears in the summer. It appears between 4 p.m. and 9 a.m.. It is a very rare fish, making it the third most expensive river fish (10,000 bells), after the Stringfish and Dorado and tied with the Arowana (which it is related to). Its shadow size is huge; similar to the Tuna and Stringfish, and likewise, it is the largest river fish. In the 'Bugs and Fish' window in City Folk, it is the last river fish. The fish is the second largest fish in the game, after the Shark at about 550 centimeters and it is tied for length with the Ocean Sunfish.

Donating to the Museum[edit]

In Animal Crossing[edit]

Blathers will say this when an Arapaima is donated:

"My word! I've never seen such a tremendous specimen! A fish such as this is found only once in a great while. A true rarity among rarities! Extraordinary! Top notch! This, we will treasure, I assure you. Cross my heart and hope to molt. Hoo!"

In Wild World[edit]

Blathers' speech is as follows when the Arapaima is donated to the Museum:

"You might think a fish this big might not be appetizing, but it's simply delicious! The arapaima used to be abundant, but overfishing has sadly made them rare. One has to wonder how many species must suffer to satiate the world..."

When donated, it is in the second tank in the first room.

In City Folk[edit]

Blathers will give this speech upon donation:

"My, it is massive, isn't it? Not just large, but the largest river-dwelling fish in the world, it's said. Records indicate a specimen some 200 inches (5 meters) in length has been sighted before... Looking at it now, the theory that this fish hasn't changed in 100 million years seems believable!"

This fish, when donated, will appear in the middle right tank.

In New Leaf[edit]

An information board in the aquarium will display this description about the Arapaima after donation:

"Arapaima, at over two yards long, are one of the largest freshwater-fish breeds in the world. They've been around for over 100 million years, making them rather ancient fish as well. They breathe through gills but also with an air bladder used by poking their mouths above water. They have hard,coarse tongues that are used to break down the smaller fish they eat."

In New Horizons[edit]

Upon donation, Blathers will say this:

"The stately arapaima is quite large. Indeed, it is among the largest freshwater fish there are. Furthermore, these fascinating fish make quite the family unit. That is to say, male arapaimas protect their young by holding them gently in their mouths. Meanwhile, female arapaimas swim circles around these full-mouthed fathers fending off predators. It simply goes to show that cold-blooded creatures can be heartwarming too."

Encyclopedia information[edit]

Wild World'[edit]

Arapaima WW.png ''The largest freshwater fish in the world, they poke their heads above water to breathe."
  • Size- 9.75 feet (2.97 meters)
  • Habitat- Rivers
  • Season- Summer

City Folk[edit]

Arapaima (City Folk).png ''The largest freshwater fish breathe by poking their heads above water."
  • Size- About 120 inches (3 meters)
  • Habitat- River
  • Season- Summer

Further information[edit]

A real life Arapaima

The arapaima is the largest freshwater fish in the world and it can be found in the Amazon River which is in South America. It is sometimes called the pirarucu or paiche. This fish can grow to about 3.2 metres, but normally about 2 to 2.5. The supposed maximum length is 4.5 metres, although this comes from an early 19th century second-hand report, and it has not been confirmed.The arapaima male is supposed to be a mouthbrooder, meaning the young are protected in its mouth until they are older. The female arapaima helps to protect the male and the young by circling them and fending off potential predators. Arapaimas breathe air and get their red coloring from their diet of red crusteceans.

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Spanish Pirarucú
French Arapaïma
Italian Piracucù

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  1. Anim. Crossing to New Leaf
  2. Northern Hemisphere in New Horizons
  3. Southern Hemisphere in New Horizons