How to Draw a Tilapia

In this quick tutorial you'll learn how to draw a Tilapia in 8 easy steps - great for kids and novice artists.

The images above represents how your finished drawing is going to look and the steps involved.

Below are the individual steps - you can click on each one for a High Resolution printable PDF version.

At the bottom you can read some interesting facts about the Tilapia.

Make sure you also check out any of the hundreds of drawing tutorials grouped by category.

How to Draw a Tilapia - Step-by-Step Tutorial

Step 1: Let's draw a Tilapia! It is a very common fish. Start with the mouth by drawing a rectangular shape with an opening in the back. Draw a small triangle under that for the bottom of the mouth. Tilapias two sets of jaws that work separately, which most fish do not.

Step 2: Draw the body by making two curved lines that almost form a large oval. Leave space at the back for the tail! The Tilapia is usually a very thin fish.

Step 3: For the tail fins, draw a few lines curving outward and connected them with a straight line. Now add a few horizontal lines inside the tail for detail.

Step 4: For the top fin, make a long teardrop shape that ends at a point. Add a few other small lines at an angle inside the fin for more detail.

Step 5: To add the bottom fin, make another similar teardrop shape, only smaller. Once again, add a few more lines inside for the fin folds.

Step 6: Draw the last bottom fin as shown. One last teardrop shape and a few final lines inside.

Step 7: For the eye, draw two ovals, one inside the other. Then, add a small curve from about the middle of the eye to below the mouth.

Step 8: Add one more fin on the inside, and several small curves to add the scale pattern.

Interesting Facts about the Tilapia

The tilapia is a type of fish that mainly lives in freshwater areas such as shallow streams, rivers, ponds, and lakes as well. These fish aren’t able to survive well in waters that get to temperatures below 21°C, so they have to stay in areas with warm water.

Did you know?

  • Tilapias were called Nile Tilapia in times from ancient Egypt and were even depicted in hieroglyphs.
  • In biblical times this fish was one of the main types of fish that was caught from the Sea of Galilee
  • During the time of the biblical era they were referred to as musht or even more commonly, St. Peter’s fish
  • These fish are very thin and have deep bodies.
  • Due to the strange way that this fish has its lower pharyngeal bones combined into one large tooth, these fish are able to almost have two sets of jaws that they can work separately
  • These fish are very effective eaters because of their “jaws” so they can eat and catch a diverse amount of things.

You wouldn’t want to have one of these fish in your own aquarium. The larger tilapias will dig up the bottom, eat the plants, and even fight with your other fish! However, these fish often do grow up in aquariums as s food source, because they have no problem growing in low qualities of water without having much room.