Top 12 World’s Largest Freshwater Fish

Freshwater fish lives in lakes, rivers, estuaries and ponds, differ from salt water fish in several respect. Many species of freshwater fish migrates between marine and fresh waters.

Beluga Sturgeon

Beluga Sturgeon fish are largest freshwater fish in the world followed by White sturgeon from Columbia River in North America. Sturgeon spend most of their lives in freshwater environments, river deltas and estuaries.

Alligator Gar

Alligator Gar is one of the largest freshwater river fish found in North America and an ambush predator. The backwaters of lowland rivers and estuaries are main variety of aquatic habitats for Alligator gar.



Arapaima is native to the Amazon basin and among the world’s largest freshwater fish. The species of arapaima is native to Amazon river basin and air breather – pirarucu.

Mekong Giant Catfish

Mekong Giant Catfish is the largest catfish in the world, native to Mekong river basin in Southeast Asia. This Mekong river catfish is on the verge of extinction due to overfishing.


Paddlefish are smooth skinned freshwater fish, found in the Mississippi river basin and Yangtze river basin. American paddlefish are found in Mississippi river delta, Mississippi and Missouri river tributaries.

Bull Shark

Zambezi shark are known as Bull Shark, found in Zambezi river in Africa and travel up the Mississippi river in United States.

River sharks are known to found in both freshwater as well as in coastal marine waters, Zambezi shark, Ganges shark and Bull shark are commonly found worldwide in warm and shallow water.

Wels Catfish

Wels Catfish is the largest true freshwater fish, native to river basins of eastern Europe and Caspian Seas.

Electric Eel

Electric Eel can reach up to 8 feet in length and make a shock up to 860 volts. The electric eel is known for its unusual breeding behavior and found in the waters of the Amazon and Orinoco river basin.

Hucho Taimen

Hucho Taimen fish commonly found in Siberia, Mongolia and Russia. It’s one of the main game fish in the world along with salmon, trout and Mahseer.

Giant freshwater stingray

Giant freshwater stingray mostly found in rivers and estuaries of Borneo and Indochina. The freshwater stingray are ranks one of the largest freshwater fish in the world and may reach 600 kg.

Piraiba Catfish

Piraiba Catfish are found in the Amazon and Orinoco basins and among  the largest species of Amazonian catfish followed by Redtail catfish or pirarara.

Nile Perch

Nile Perch is a freshwater fish and found in brackish waters of Congo, Nile and Lake Chad. The Nile perch fish can grow up to 6 ft and listed as one of the largest freshwater fishes in the world.

Big and giant freshwater fish of the world also include Pirarara Catfish from Amazon,Giant Tigerfish from Africa, Goonch Catfish from India, Giant Barramundi, Giant snakehead, Giant Barb, Lungfish, Chinook Salmon, Giant Salamander, Peacock Bass and Largetooth Sawfish.

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