For as long as I can remember, the arowana fish has been held in the highest regard by the Chinese for wealth luck.
It’s not one of the fishes that aquarium keepers and pure aquatic hobbyists have a preference to due to the time commitment, effort and money required to maintain them.
People who keep arowanas as house pets almost always keep them with a certain degree of belief that the water feature together with the fish will bring good fortune and luck.
They are gracious in how they glide through the water. They are beautiful with their shiny scales. And they are have observable personalities in the water.
This species of fish can grow up to 1 meter in captivity. Sometimes even bigger and longer.
They are also known to be jumpers and can easily fly out of water reaching a height of over 1 meter.
Here is a video I took of an arowana pond when visiting a farm to help someone select one.
If there’s any doubt about whether they can live happily in harmony with others, this footage of the outdoor pond should provide the answer.
However, when keeping more than 1 arowana, the general rule is to keep them in odd numbers rather than even numbers.
Such is the popularity of arowanas in the East that there are actually competition for breeders to enter to showcase their showpiece arowanas.
Those that are deem to be of high quality can fetch a price going into the thousands.
Not bad for a household fish.
Some even come with certificates of guaranteed feng shui luck upon purchase!
But these tropical fishes are not as straight forward on the surface for feng shui as one might suggest.
Not all arowanas are good luck
Arowanas are one of those feng shui symbols that don’t always carry the same connotations.
Unlike the dragon which is always a celestial creature to behold and revered, only arowanas with certain features will bring good fortune and prosperity luck to it’s owners.
This is the main reason why many keepers of arowanas are baffled why they continue to be stuck in a rut in terms of luck even after placing their prized fishes at the north sector of their homes.
Feng shui arowanas that are capable of bringing wealth luck are limited to those that display a hint of pink, silver or gold.
The colors must be observable on first sight.
It is also said that when owners are able to notice the silvers scales changing color to pink or gold over a period of time, it is a divine sign that extreme money luck is incoming.
Any doubt you have to it’s colors will mean that it is not one of those that will generate good luck for it’s owner.
They still makes beautiful majestic pets though.
Also don’t make the mistake of confusing gray and silver.
While arowanas have long been a favorite among feng shui DIY practitioners, more and more professional practitioners are advocating that they are negative symbols to keep at home.
And it is argued that the keeping of arowanas for good luck is more down to culture, customs, and to a certain extent, superstition.
This is mostly attributed to the fish being given the nickname of dragon fish. The mandarin name is 金龙鱼, which literally translates to golden dragon fish. Many believe that the association of it with good luck is due to it’s name relating to the dragon.
The reasoning behind the growing negativity regarding arowanas in feng shui is that these fishes are predators that feed on other live animals like prawns and other smaller variety of fishes like happy guppies.
This, as the debaters argue is bad feng shui. And good luck cannot befall those that encourage the killing actions of a carnivore that occur at home on a daily basis.
When we look at it from this perspective, it does make sense.
However, the line might be blurred when we consider that the tiger for example, is a prominent animal in feng shui. So much so that the white tiger is an essential member among the 4 animals in landscape feng shui.
And the tiger is most definite not vegan, but very much a meat eater. So are owls which are strong symbols of wisdom and snakes which have it’s own place in the Chinese zodiac.
Even the crane bird which one of the ultimate symbols of longevity has a diet consisting partly of live fish.
So if you have the intention of keeping an arowana as a lucky pet, you need to first decide whether it is for or against good luck.
Also consider that they can be expensive to both buy and maintain.
You could of course, train your arowana to consume food pellets instead of live animals. That could eliminate any doubts you have on the karma that they can bring to the house.
It would remove that death cycle altogether from the aquarium tank.
If you cannot get over the live feeding tendencies of arowanas, consider keeping other types of fish like goldfish instead.
Placement of arowana fish aquarium
The placement of arowanas is the same as the general rules of aquarium placement for feng shui.
However, because of the wealth connotations with these fishes, they are preferably placed either at areas of the house where there is a residing flying water star that is favorable, or at the north where water energy has a base presence, or at the southeast to feed the favorable wood energy.
Some people keep them at the left side of the house to signify and call on the green dragon. While others also locate the sheng chi direction according to 8 mansions feng shui and set up the aquarium there.
Also keep in mind that you should only keep 1 or 5 arowanas.
Alternatives to live arowanas
While real arowanas are gorgeous to look at with the glossy sheen of their scales, the symbolism of the fish can be called upon as well with pictures of it or with display artifacts.
Just keep in mind that when depicted in paintings, they are best in gold or dark maroon color.
When used in paintings, take note not to purchase one with a fish that is too big.
Like most lucky animals in feng shui, even though they can bring luck to residents, they can become “naughty” when they have an overly powerful presence in the household.
Placement rules will follow that of the live aquarium.
The golden arowana is also a popular display item for those who are seeking success in their careers. They make great gifts for business owners too.
In this sense, they can be placed in wealth corners, or where the lucky water star 8 resides.