Sharing Kenya’s Nature with the Rest of the World


Kenya Marine Center (KMC) is passionate about fish and for a decade, it has steadily and progressively worked to position itself as one of the largest suppliers of tropical marine fish and inverts from East Africa. From its base in Kikambala, 20 km north of Mombasa Airport, Kenya Marine Center through partnerships has spread the beauty of Kenya marine life across the world


A Leader in the IndustryDSCF1051

The fish and inverts from Kenya Marine Center can be found in aquariums across the globe.  The company currently delivers fish across five continents. Working with wholesalers, trans-shippers and big retailers of tropical marine fish and inverts. Achieving a presence in the major cities across the globe has been made possible by the correct partnership with major players like Lufthansa. This ensures that the fish reach customers in good health.


Committed to Quality

To ensure that the quality of fish is always of high standards, the company has experienced fishermen and has a great health management system for the livestock within the system.  As a member of Ornamental Fish International, the company follows international best practices in fish and inverts handling and packaging. KMC is strongly committed to the code of ethics by OFI.


Conscious of the Environment

There are still other places in the word where chemical fishing still takes place despite being illegal in many countries. Apart from side effects on human beings, cyanide which is commonly used kills coral reefs and other life forms that rely on them.

Kenya Marine Center is a strong advocate of safe fishing methods, hand, and net fishing. The company does not only keep this as policy but has also  produced education content on the best fishing practices and shared on various platforms.


jochen federschmied


Jochen Federschmied the founder and CEO of Kenya Marine Center  notes that the success of the company has been pegged on the continued training of the permanent employed fishermen in the use of unique traditional fishing of using long and scoop nets as the baseline for the company’s success.

“We began with sustainability even before this word came in fashion” Jochen says.




Kenya Marine Center is committed to quality and if you ever wondered where your next shipment is going to come from. Look no further, contact one of the largest suppliers of tropical marine fish and you will be happy that you did.


News and improvements

Kenya marine center’s milestonesofi-logo

The CEO; person behind this

The CEO; person behind it!

Tropical ornamental marine fish supply is a delicate field. It entails dealing with live fish which can be vulnerable to various strains like effects of transport on fish stress and seasons of the sun.

But when you study and research well on the correct procedures and requirements for your fish as well as the market then you engage yourself in a routine for such a long time, you gain the experience.

To begin with, experience in business comes in various forms which include building a rapport for oneself and the company.  Also indulging and connecting to the right people and associates is also part of experience. With this in mind, KMC is continuously taking part in international trade shows and fairs, actively involving in social media networks which give us open forum to get ideas and critics from all traders worldwide. Also being member of international organizations dealing in fish and aquatic industry like OFI, OATA has made us develop a worldwide supply network for the last 10 years.

The specific knowledge of the market and our products has led to being the best supplier of healthy and active fish as well as invertebrates which has given us a continuous growth over a long period of time. With this knowledge in place, we can positively say that we connect to more than 300 destinations in the world.  And this is such a big step for us.

What we also did was maintaining our high level of standards and quality by sticking to the code of ethics as well

Foundation and start of our journey.

Foundation and start of our journey.

as working in line with the authorities. This is both locally and abroad especially the import and exporting permits required for trading and dealing in live aquatic animals.

Similarly standards and quality can be felt and the holding with our newly installed high performance protein skimmer so that the quality of water is maintained and fish are quarantined and acclimatized properly. The replacement of old skimmer came in just after we had installed a super UV sterilizer which keeps all bacteria in the water at bay. So the two working together is just a perfect match!


assembling going on

Assembling going on

We also talk about quality at KMC in reference to the dedication we have been putting in to ensure that customers are all satisfied at all levels. Dedication is put in place at all steps of chain of operation. In that,

  1. Our trained fishermen fish sustainably only selecting fish that are on customer orders hence avoiding by-catches,
  2. Aquarium staff ensuring that the fish are well taken care as they are at the holding tanks awaiting for packing,
  3. The packing department which is always ready to do their part in the chain,
  4. Administration works on the paperwork required by shipment,
  5. Transport who ensures fish are carried from ocean to holding station timely so they are not stressed and also carries the packed fish to airport for shipping to final destination, being the customers airport,
  6. Booking office ensures the flight is booked and scheduled for the specific time and date of shipment,
  7. And not forgetting the management who takes care of all necessary requirements and logistics both on the ground from back office to front for the sufficient flow of this chain until the customer receives the shipment.

This is realized since we have experienced long serving staff who are trained and always ensures high standards of sustainability and quality are maintained by being involved in only accredited methods of fishing and on-the order only, bring the caught12208689_634548483351538_5197947389968917389_n fish to holding station where fish are well selected then quarantined and observed at our tanks before they are separated for packing. And then, they are transported to their final destination by air.

More so, it has helped us to meet our customer expectations, who expect us to deliver quality products. And we have managed to retain their loyalty for now and future. Quality products make an important contribution to long-term revenue and profitability. They also enable you to charge and maintain pricing, in which the ability of having huge supply power in the industry has given us opportunity to bargain for competitive prices in the market hence the reason why we sell in wholesale prices.

Lastly, a major step is that, due to huge freight volumes that we ship out regularly we now have cheaper freight rates with established quality airlines as well as spot rates to major DSCF2695destinations among our supply networks. This means that our clients are in better position to order big and pay low freight rates for their shipments.

Why you need a Good Protein Skimmer in an Export Quarantine Holding Facility

What is the most important aspect in the ornamental fish business? There are a myriad of things to consider for the success of any business not just the ornamental fish business. Yet, when talking to retailers, wholesalers and even hobbyist all mention fish quality as the most critical aspect in the trade.

For the hobbyist all they want is to receive the livestock in good condition and for the livestock to survive. They are also interested in keeping their cost down. The retailers need good quality fish to cut shipping costs.

Exporters however, want to increase profitability by shipping out high quality tropical saltwater fish. This is because customers expect nothing less. The higher the quality of fish the higher the customer loyalty rate which directly leads to better profits.

Each aspect of the commercial tropical saltwater fish and invertebrate enterprise is critical in ensuring high quality fish. Fish quality begins in the capture of fish, hence the need to know how the fish you buy is caught. Does your supplier use chemical fishing or hand and net fishing techniques? This is a question you need to ask before taking in a new supplier.

The Importance of a Protein Skimmer in an Export Holding Facility

It is often said that maintaining good water quality is the single most important thing an aquarium owner can do to ensure the health of fish. The better the water quality the stronger the health status of the fish.

The same is also true in holding facilities for exporters. Protein skimmers remove protein and other organic waste maintaining a healthy environment for the fish.



The newly installed Protein skimmer at Kenya marine center

How Protein Skimmers Work

Protein skimmers use the process of chemical absorption to remove organic waste materials from the water column. By adhering to the surface of water bubbles, waste materials are removed out of the water. The water bubbles are formed from the vigorous mixture of air and aquarium water within the protein skimmer reaction chamber.

The created micro-bubbles travel through the skimmer, waste clinging to them are condensed and transported into the protein skimmer collection cup. Protein skimmers allows for efficient mechanical, chemical and biological filtration.

The best exporters have invested heavily in good protein skimmers to make sure and keep up the supply of high quality fish. It is common practice to replace old protein skimmers with high modern ones for better efficiency.

A case study is Kenya Marine Center which has recently invested several thousand dollars into a new state of the art protein skimmer and has just completed the upgrade. This is a clear indication of its commitment in the health and quality of fish.

My 101 list- The Most Preferred Tropical Saltwater Sea Fishes for Aquariums in 2017

Tropical seas and oceans of the world are home to fish, myriad invertebrates, and mammals. The warm waters and the coral reefs provide the perfect environment for many beautiful fish and inverts to survive. The reefs provide natural protection for the tropical saltwater fish. Many adoptions have led to the most bizarre and beautiful creatures making them suitable for your tropical saltwater aquarium.

An example is the Stonefish which has evolved to look the way it does. Looking like stone helping it avoid being another animal’s prey.

Marine tropical fish are loved for their beautiful colors. The full spectrum of colors and intricate of patterns make them perfect for any aquarium display.

The Kenya marine ecosystem is home to more than a thousand tropical saltwater fishes and invertebrates. You can request for a list of fish and inverts at Kenya Marine

Below is my 101 list. It consists of fish found on the tropical marine coastline of East Africa.


New Animals

  1. Snubnose Pompano
  2. Long-finned Rock Cod
  3. Yellowtail Fusilier

Surgeon Fishes


  1. Powder blue tang
  2. Clown SurgeonFish
  3. Spot-Cheeked Surgeonfish
  4. Lavender tang
  5. Convict Surgeonfish
  6. Eyestripe surgeonfish
  7. Epaulette surgeonfish
  8. Desjardin`s Sailfin Tang
  9. Spotted Unicornfish
  10. Orange-spine Unicornfish
  11. Blue Tang – Yellowbelly
  12. Gold eye doctor
  13. Blue-Eye Bristletooth
  14. Lieutenant Surgeonfish


Perch, Snapper

  1. Lyretail Coralfish
  2. Redbar Anthias
  3. Velvet Fish
  4. Threadfin Goldie
  5. Blue Spotted Peacock
  6. Bluestripe snapper
  7. Honeycomb grouper

 Anemone Fishes

  1. Allard´s clownfish
  2. Yellow-bellied Anemonefish
  3. Skunk clownfish


Damsel Fishes

  1. Stripetail Damsel
  2. Chromis half half
  3. Green Chromis Damsel
  4. Whitetail dascyllus
  5. Cloudy dascyllus
  6. Threespot damsel
  7. Gold tail Cromis
  8. Blue Damsel

Hawk Fishes 

  1. Lined Chromis
  2. Arc-eye hawkfish
  3. Black-sided hawkfish 

File Fishes

  1. Alutera red tail filefish
  2. longnose filefish
  3. Blacksaddle filefish 

Blennius, Gobius, Goat Fishes 

  1. Jewelled Rock skipper
  2. Golden-headed Sleeper Goby
  3. Pretty Prawn Goby
  4. Twostripe goby
  5. Leopard blenny
  6. Golden blenny
  7. Radium Goby
  8. Yellow saddle Goatfish
  9. Brownsaddle Goatfish
  10. Blue-dorsal Mudskipper
  11. Cleaner Mimic Blenny
  12. Golden Mimic Blenny
  13. Coral gobies
  14. Mossambicus Blenny
  15. Firefish
  16. Ord.Red yellow stone fish
  17. Pink flasher
  18. Pinkbar goby 


  1. Bicolor Cleaner Wrasse
  2. Bluestreak cleaner wrasse
  3. Yellow-tail Tamarin
  4. Yellow-breasted wrasse
  5. Lined wrasse
  6. Queen Coris
  7. African Clown Wrasse
  8. Queen Coris
  9. African Clown Wrasse
  10. Clown Coris
  11. East African Wrasse
  12. Exquisite Wrasse
  13. Two spot Wrasse
  14. Social Fairy Wrasse
  15. Radiant Wrasse
  16. Adorned Wrasse
  17. Orange-tipped Rainbow Wrasse
  18. Dragon Wrasse
  19. Six line Wrasse
  20. Mystery Wrasse
  21. Carpenter´Wrasse
  22. Sixline Wrasse
  23. Lyretail Wrasse
  24. Brown Bird Wrasse
  25. lyretail Hogfish
  26. Diana´s Hogfish
  27. Bluelined Wrasse
  28. Messmate PipeFish

Pipe Fishes

  1. Blue striped Pipe Fish
  2. Leaf ghost pipe
  3. Star and stripes Puffer
  4. White Spot Puffer
  5. Scribbled Toadfish
  6. Golden Puffer
  7. Golden Stellate puffer
  8. Balloonfish
  9. Yellow Boxfish
  10. Black Boxfish
  11. Black-saddled toby
  12. Peacock Puffer

Angel Fishes

  1. Gold tail angelfish
  2. African pygmy Angelfish

If you are interested in importing fish or inverts from the Kenya marine or the East African coastal region you need to talk to the experts of tropical saltwater fish in the region. Professionals with in-depth knowledge of the fish and inverts in the region and adhere to international best practices in fish handling and packaging. Contact one of the largest marine tropical fish exporters and you will be happy that you did.


publication1Our technician fixing the new model of UV sterilizer.

We want the best for our fish and the best for our customers!

On this note,we are replacing our UV sterilizer with a newer model as time has taken his tribute.

img_20160914_114506Installations going on to make our quality production even more advanced

We know that every investment in quality will pay back, or at least doubled.

It is one and only of this kind in Kenya and we at Kenya marine center are privileged to have it in our facility. It means a lot of improvements to KMC community including our customers. I call it unique because of the following features;

– Small Footprint
– Easy to install and maintain
– powerfuel and high sterilization rate
– Long lamp lifeimg_20160914_135436

– Greater cell penetration
– Highest quality hard quartz
– Clear cap glow tells you your lamp is on
– Optional wiper for easy maintenance


This kind of sterilizer is ideal for our large commercial aquarium so that we can maintain the water and fish quality. The specially designed lamps disinfect faster and have greater cell penetration capability. The compact body design has a small footprint making it easy to handle, install and maintain. It has vipers which are engineered to accommodate extreme flow rates of up to 60,000 liter which is equivalent to 16,000 gallons of water so as to control disease in fish and maintain the levels of planktons in the tanks. A flow switch, provided, shuts the unit off automatically to balance the flows.

UV Sterilizers are being used by public aquariums, importers and hobbyists alike to control bacteria, protozoa and parasites, reducing the spread of fish disease. In a confined environment like an aquarium UV and filtration are essential. The UV Sterilizer is a proven method to eradicate bacteria, viruses and protozoa.

At Kenya marine center we can now be sure after upgrading and replacing our UV sterilizer, we are guaranteed of disinfected water, algae elimination, fungal and parasites as well as bacteria control. This is going to help us maintain our quality fish delivery to the customers and continue being the best exporters of marine ornamental fish as well as invertebrates.

img_20160915_124305The lights are on and Kenya marine center has a new UV sterilizer!

Fishing and Export routines of KMC

There is more to ornKenya Marine Center 2 Logoamental fishing than meets the eye. Kenya Marine Center (KMC) is orderly about this process right from the beginning to the end.  There are a few points that stand out in every successful shipment and they are as follows:


Kenya is a developing nation which has its challenges of growth.  In the coastal region of Kenya where most ornamental fish trade takes place, infrastructure is quite a challenge. Therefore as KMC, there was need for an all weather (road) fish trucks that takes the fishermen to different fishing points to ensure a good catch which is both good to the export station and its fishermen.

Loading of packed fish for transport

Loading of packed fish for transport

A good truck must carry all the needed fishing equipment. Some of the equipment required is good holding bags and oxygen cylinders to pump air to the fish in their containment bags while in transit.

Modern fishing boats equipped with an out boat engine are used to ferry the fishermen to their selected fishing points. Kenya marine center preferred these boats as they can sustain the weather and currents of the ocean without endangering the lives of their fishermen.


Over the years, in the evolution of the fishing industry different methods of catching fish have been discovered that are less tiring and more efficient. These methods have been found to be destructive to the environment and most hobbyists complain of the inferior quality of fish.

At Kenya Marine Center, we insist in the quality of hard work and fish are hand net caught.

Kenya marine center fishermen preparing themselves for some underwater action in the ocean

Fisher men readying their nets before diving

Kenya Marine Center Packing fish for transit.

The fishermen poke at the caves where the fish hide to scare them towards a waiting barrier net before rushing to scoop them up using hand scoop nets.

This method is most popular and quite tiresome but the extra effort protects the ocean reserves and preserves the fish natural habitat.                                                                                        

 Holding stations

Attention is not only given to the method of catching fish. Kenya Marine Center as a company prides in supplying healthy fish.

Kenya Marine Center employee checking the waters salinity

Checking  salinity of the water PH

Long term professional employees who are knowledgeable in a wide range of fish and can give proper care to them at an individual capacity, monitor the fish and the state they are in. This is made possible by investing in modern facilities and use of modern technology.                                                

Packing of the fish

At this point bookings for shipment are already confirmed and the packing staffs are tasked to provide comfort for the fish to endure an entire flight. Each fish has its own method of packing, special boxes will be used as fish differ in size and nature. Through experience Kenya Marine Center has valued the importance of working of long term employees as we found their experience to be invaluable.

Kenya Marnie Center Packing fish for transit.

Kenya Marine Center Packing fish for transit.

                                              Regulations and fish policies

The most important part in every shipment however, is meeting standard health measures as regulated by the Kenyan government.

KMC administrators link with government health inspectors (veterinaries) to verify and certify the condition of the fish before they leave to their different destinations.

right direction

The administrators also link with airport officials to book flights that will guarantee the speedy delivery of the fish with limited to zero interference.

Success of every export station lies in the number of positive feedback. Kenya Marine Center has achieved this through efficiency and a race against time in every stage.


“Quality Is Our Commitment”

(The author is a Public Relations Manager at Kenya Marine center, which is the leading East Africa supplier in ornamental fish. All supporting evidence produced in this article is courtesy of Kenya Marine Center





Being able to manage quality at KMC has helped us to maintain customer satisfaction and loyalty and reduce the risk and cost of replacing faulty goods. Companies can build a reputation for quality by gaining accreditation with a recognized quality standard, such as Ornamental Fish International for Standardization.

It has helped us to meet our customer expectations, who expect us to deliver quality products. Failure to which, they will quickly look for alternatives. But we have managed to retain their loyalty for now and future. Quality products make an important contribution to long-term revenue and profitability. They also enable you to charge and maintain pricing.

Also, quality has influenced the reputation of Kenya marine center over a long period of time. The growing importance of social media means that customers and prospects can easily share both favorable opinions and criticism of your product quality on forums, product review sites and social networking sites, such as Facebook (Kenya marine center) and Twitter (@kenya marine). Being aware of this, KMC is represented on almost all social platforms where the public is free to give their views on us.

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Being a member of Ornamental Fish International has been essential for us, when it comes to dealing with certain customers or complying with legislation. Most customers insist that their suppliers achieve accreditation with quality standards for continued loyalty. Accreditation has help KMC to win new customers and enter new markets.

Lastly, we have saved costs and time by offering quality to our customers. If you do not have an effective quality control system in place, you may incur the cost of analyzing nonconforming goods, the root causes and repackaging products after reworking them. In some cases, you may have to scrap defective products and incur additional production costs to replace them. If defective products reach customers, you will have to pay for returns and replacements and, in serious cases; you could incur legal costs for failure to comply with customer or industry standards.





 Moving forward, at KMC we believe in quality. And investing in experienced employees is one of our quality control tools. Thus we welcome Mr. Kaingu on board. He has been in this industry for 8 years and still loving it. He takes pride in his job and promises more to come since he says, “8 years is not short. Yet, I still have the energy and ambition to give more to my job, and of course together with my colleagues who we have worked together in other organizations!”

KMC draft Logo

This is more like I have been there and done it kind of attitude!

From his story I can only point out the many advantages of having experienced staff on board;

  • Employees with years of work experience have a better understanding and grasp of the nature of work. They are always easier to recruit, and it is also easy for them to adjust to a working culture, as it just takes one or two days.
  • They also bring in their expertise to the organization.
  • Experienced employees, not old employees, have a fair idea of work pressures, work cultures, and work ethics. Since they have been there and done that, working comes easier for them than the others. Their years of achievements, failures, trained judgment, and mature sense of responsibility can prove to be extremely advantageous to Kenya Marine Center. This helps in making the work streamlined, and reduces the effort of training.
  • When KMC is hiring experienced employees is because of their ability to set excellent examples for rest of the employees and it works well in favor of the employer. Younger employees look up to experienced and senior employees for advice and guidance. And this helps in setting up a healthy working environment.
  • Discipline of any form is of utmost importance to excel at anything and everything you do. Having disciplined employees with an unwavering focus and dedication towards work can improve the productivity of KMC by leaps and bounds. Disciplined employees also help in maintaining a certain image of the company. It enhances the efficiency, quality and quantity output.


Therefore we at KMC as one of the most advanced exporter of life tropical marine fish are privileged to add such a skilled person to our team so that we can continue giving our customers the best services.


By Kenya marine center.


LOGO - Copy


Quality is our commitment” is always our motto.

This has made us stay in business for this long! It is a delicate field dealing with live fish. But when you study and research well on the correct procedures and requirements for your fish as well as the market then you engage yourself in a routine for such a long time, you gain the experience. The specific knowledge of the market and our products has led to being the best supplier of healthy and active fish as well as invertebrates which has given us a continuous growth over the past 10 years.



What we also did was maintaining our high level of standards and quality by sticking to the code of ethics as well as working in line with the authorities.

We talk quality at KMC in reference to the dedication we have been putting in since the last ten years.  From the management to the administration to the fish house staff over the packer to the fisherman folk whole process of getting fish from the ocean to the aquarium up to the airport, we do under control of the whole process.






This is realized since we have experienced long serving staff that always ensures high standards of quality are maintained by hand and net catching; which are well selected then quarantined and observed at our tanks before they are separated for packing. And then, they are transported to their final destination by air.

And this is why our customers believe in us!



5 key reasons why some fishes are rare for trade

As a trader in the export of live marine fish and invertebrates I often meet clients with outrageous demands for rare fishes.

I owe it to my clients to provide them with their choice of fish but I also owe them an explanation why I consider some demands beyond limits.

  1. Complex to keep

The business of ornamental fish goes well beyond beauty and attraction. It includes some in depth knowledge of the fish to keep, how to keep and the tank mates to keep it with. Some pose more challenges than others while others are a stroll in the park. To this point a few fish are considered to be rare in terms of demand as few people can undertake the challenge of keeping them.

  1. Re population

Most aquarium fish can only re populate in the wild. There are some which take longer than others and therefore difficult to find. This makes them rare only during a particular time. Re population is affected by the nature of fish and different weather patterns. The faster a fish re populates the easier it becomes to deliver it. We try to advice all our clients on this.

Forcipiger-EvansiExtensively, during the months of June and July the coastal regions of Kenya experience some cold weather and rains. Certain species like the Mirolabrichthys evansi and the Forcipiger flavissimus take advantage of the cloudy waters to hide and repopulate. During these months they can’t be found with ease but when the waters are calm and clear (From October onwards), they will be littered everywhere.




  1. Seasonal

This is closely related to repopulation however it stands as a point in itself. Some fish are quite migratory. They can only be found in our waters in different seasons of the year. This kind of rare fish are only to be acquired when available before they disappear again. A good trader will know this vital information and will prepare his customers for the availability of the fish before they migrate to re populate again.

  1. Hybrids

Hybrids command such a handsome price in the industry. The off springs are rare because they come from a cross breed of two different species. One such crossbreed is between the Zebrasoma gemmatum and the Zebrasoma scopas. However the love child between the two species fails to live to its glorious reputation. This is majorly because both species don dark colorations in nature.

It is sad that despite the hybrids affluence and rarity, it is considered meager and dull compared to a pedigree Zebrasoma gemmatum.

  1. Trader Awareness

It takes a lot of discipline and maturity to run a full time ornamental fish export company. The knowledge of how to care for each species demands while in the facility requires patience.

A Practical case in point

An experienced dealer will acknowledge that wrasses are by far the most delicate species that easily succumb to stress than most saltwater fish.

The following are facts about healthy keeping of wrasses

There are 3 types of Wrasses;


Macropharyngodon-bipartitus 1

  1. Totally Reef safe- Those that do not feed on corals or invertebrates
  2. Reef safe- They do not feed on corals but may pose risks to some invertebrates
  • Not reef safe






                                  Special Requirements for Wrasses

  • System transition- wrasses are particularly vulnerable during a system transition. The handling between when they are transported from the ocean to the export facility should be fast and smooth. They should be acclimatized progressively to avoid temperature related stress.
  • Aggression- must be kept with peaceful tank mates. Basically non-aggressive fish.
  • Feeding- You need to feed them several times a day. Wrasses are quite active and energetic.
  • Tank set up- All wrasses are jumpers. Wrasses in general hide in sand and small rock substrates. – Instinctively they are not used to the surface and if tanks are not covered they might leap out of the tank.

Note: Generally it is advisable for traders to include sand in holding tanks for wrasses (to eliminate stress) but most traders disregard this, arguing that sand makes it impossible to observe the fish health condition thereby compromising the fish quality.

For more variety of fish kindly check our website and blog

Quality is our commitment.