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Killifish Chronicles

This is a discussion on Killifish Chronicles within the Tank Journals forums, part of the Aquarium Related Chat category; Will be describing my experiences with several species of killifish, methods of breeding, raising fry, raising live foods. Current species ...

  1. #1
    Forum Novice cgjedi's Avatar
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    Default Killifish Chronicles

    Will be describing my experiences with several species of killifish, methods of breeding, raising fry, raising live foods.

    Current species list:

    Callopanchax occidentalis "Teme Yella SL89 DRCH"
    https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/F...DRCH,_Male.png


    Aphyosemion bivittatum "Mbonge"
    http://aka.org/~KMI/PhotoDataBase/A/A.(chrome).volcanum.Mbonge.0.jpg

    A.biv-Mbonge_male.jpg
    A.biv-Mbonge_female.jpg

    Aphyosemion bitaeniatum "Ijebu Ode"
    http://www.wak.aka.org/Photos/Rudolf_Pohlmann/0104-BIT-IJEBU-ODE-B.jpg

    A.bit-IjeboOde_female.jpg
    A.bit-IjeboOde_male.jpg



    Aphyosemion schioetzi "Ngombe Z91"
    http://www.wak.aka.org/Photos/A.schioetzi_Ngombe_Z91.1_Rimmer.jpg
    A.schiotze-Ngombe_male.jpg


    Fundulopanchax sjoestedti "Dwarf Red"
    http://www.wak.aka.org/Photos/Fp.sjo...M_DR_Purzl.jpg

    Fundulopanchax gardneri "Innidere - Tanaka/Veiga Red"
    https://ixquick-proxy.com/do/spg/sho...dc2f89f22888eb

    Nothobranchius korthausae "Mafia Island"(AS)


    Nothobranchius melanospilus "Ruvu TZN 17-9"
    Last edited by cgjedi; 10-10-2018 at 03:23 PM.
    tredford8, Reckon and geealexg like this.

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    Forum Guru arash53's Avatar
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    Cool , that would be awesome, thank you
    Last edited by arash53; 07-31-2018 at 03:11 PM.

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    Forum Novice cgjedi's Avatar
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    Default "Dwarf Red" Blue Gularis

    The AKA (American Killifish Association) has a preservation program underway for key killifish species. With a lot of natural environments being threatened and governments cracking down on exporting fish and the younger generation not interested in keeping fish anymore, they expressed an urgent request for anyone interested to commit to keeping/breeding certain key species. One of these is Blue Gularis.

    These are spectacular fish. Most of the varieties get up to 6". But they also require large tanks. I chose to try the Dwarf Red variety. By saying they are dwarf means that they are just smaller than the usual variety. They still get around 4".

    I was able to locate 2 females and 1 male, about 3 months old and not full grown. Killifish are known jumpers. Within a week, one of the females had jumped out of the tank and ended up a crispy critter on the floor. I quickly made sure the tank had a very tight fitting glass lid system. But then another problem showed up. These fish can be very hard on each other. I noticed that the male started tearing up the remaining female's fins. So I separated each into their own 10 gallon tank.

    After several months of feeding them white worms, mini-pellets, blood worms and flakes, they had grown in size. The male developed the long flowing fins they are known for. I decided to try breeding them. They are bottom spawners and the little info I could find stated they spawn in a layer of peat. But not having peat at the moment I decided on a layer of yarn spawning mops at the bottom of a 5 gallon tank. I put them both together in the tank in the evening. After a few days I checked the spawning mops and there were indeed eggs being laid. I picked them out by hand and put them in a small container of their tank water. However after a few days all of them had gotten fungus. This could be because they are a young pair and the eggs had not been fertilized. I removed them to their own tanks again.

    After a few more weeks I tried again and again had eggs in the mops. This time I tried laying the eggs in a small container of moist peat. I covered the container and put it in the drawer. Checking after a few days again all the eggs were fungused.

    After another try, this time I decided to just put the mop that the eggs were in into a plastic sandwich bag after wringing out most of the water. This mop had 3 eggs. After a few days, there was no fungus showing up but two of the eggs had disappeared leaving just one egg. I decided to let it keep sitting and see what happened after 6 weeks.

    In the meantime, the male somehow jumped out of his tank and ended up a crispy critter as well. I still don't know how he did it since the tank was completely covered. That put an end to my breeding attempts. All hinged on what the remaining egg would do. I did try to get some more fish but he did not have any more available right now.

    After about 6-7 weeks, I checked on the egg in the yarn mop. I saw that it was no longer clear and had darkened with the small fry that had grown in the egg. I decided to try and hatch it. I filled a small plastic container with the tank water and put a bit of peat at the bottom. I carefully placed the remaining egg in the container. If it would be ready to hatch, it would be within several hours. Nothing happened.

    I decided to keep waiting and have the egg incubate in the water. Maybe it would hatch when it was ready. After a week of waiting and nothing happening I looked in the container one day and noticed a tiny little dark sliver with two small round objects attached at one end. I tipped the container slightly and saw that it swam away. The egg had hatched! It was not very noticeable in all the peat. I put a very small amount of microworms in the water.

    That was 2 days ago. It will be very delicate to get the fry growing. I have no idea if it is a male or female. Hopefully after a few months I'll be able to tell if I have a chance for a breeding pair.
    Last edited by cgjedi; 08-01-2018 at 03:31 PM.
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    Good luck raising this little guy!
    Are you breeding Apheosemions also? They are gorgeous fish.

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    It's too bad finding Blue Gularis is probably even harder than actually raising one up. I have been searching for a while and couldn't find any. The only few on aquabid are from american breeders who won't ship to Canada. Does the AKA expect those who don't have access to these fish to just spontaneously get a specimen? Does the AKA have some kind of network of breeders that accessible to the public? How would I get some of these blue gularis?

    Quote Originally Posted by cgjedi View Post
    The AKA (American Killifish Association) has a preservation program underway for key killifish species. With a lot of natural environments being threatened and governments cracking down on exporting fish and the younger generation not interested in keeping fish anymore, they expressed an urgent request for anyone interested to commit to keeping/breeding certain key species. One of these is Blue Gularis.

    These are spectacular fish. Most of the varieties get up to 6". But they also require large tanks. I chose to try the Dwarf Red variety. By saying they are dwarf means that they are just smaller than the usual variety. They still get around 4".

    I was able to locate 2 females and 1 male, about 3 months old and not full grown. Killifish are known jumpers. Within a week, one of the females had jumped out of the tank and ended up a crispy critter on the floor. I quickly made sure the tank had a very tight fitting glass lid system. But then another problem showed up. These fish can be very hard on each other. I noticed that the male started tearing up the remaining female's fins. So I separated each into their own 10 gallon tank.

    After several months of feeding them white worms, mini-pellets, blood worms and flakes, they had grown in size. The male developed the long flowing fins they are known for. I decided to try breeding them. They are bottom spawners and the little info I could find stated they spawn in a layer of peat. But not having peat at the moment I decided on a layer of yarn spawning mops at the bottom of a 5 gallon tank. I put them both together in the tank in the evening. After a few days I checked the spawning mops and there were indeed eggs being laid. I picked them out by hand and put them in a small container of their tank water. However after a few days all of them had gotten fungus. This could be because they are a young pair and the eggs had not been fertilized. I removed them to their own tanks again.

    After a few more weeks I tried again and again had eggs in the mops. This time I tried laying the eggs in a small container of moist peat. I covered the container and put it in the drawer. Checking after a few days again all the eggs were fungused.

    After another try, this time I decided to just put the mop that the eggs were in into a plastic sandwich bag after wringing out most of the water. This mop had 3 eggs. After a few days, there was no fungus showing up but two of the eggs had disappeared leaving just one egg. I decided to let it keep sitting and see what happened after 6 weeks.

    In the meantime, the male somehow jumped out of his tank and ended up a crispy critter as well. I still don't know how he did it since the tank was completely covered. That put an end to my breeding attempts. All hinged on what the remaining egg would do. I did try to get some more fish but he did not have any more available right now.

    After about 6-7 weeks, I checked on the egg in the yarn mop. I saw that it was no longer clear and had darkened with the small fry that had grown in the egg. I decided to try and hatch it. I filled a small plastic container with the tank water and put a bit of peat at the bottom. I carefully placed the remaining egg in the container. If it would be ready to hatch, it would be within several hours. Nothing happened.

    I decided to keep waiting and have the egg incubate in the water. Maybe it would hatch when it was ready. After a week of waiting and nothing happening I looked in the container one day and noticed a tiny little dark sliver with two small round objects attached at one end. I tipped the container slightly and saw that it swam away. The egg had hatched! It was not very noticeable in all the peat. I put a very small amount of microworms in the water.

    That was 2 days ago. It will be very delicate to get the fry growing. I have no idea if it is a male or female. Hopefully after a few months I'll be able to tell if I have a chance for a breeding pair.

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    Forum Novice cgjedi's Avatar
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    In case you don't know, there's a Vancouver Area Killifish Association which meets monthly. There are a few members raising Blue Gularis but as I said, there's still very few available.

    Even if the US sources won't ship to Canada, that's probably a good thing since eggs in packages are routinely put through Xrays which kill all the eggs. But you can easily get a mail box across the border and import them yourself. It's not illegal, even if you've heard otherwise. Just tell the border guards they are tropical fish.

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    Forum Novice cgjedi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by barvinok View Post
    Good luck raising this little guy!
    Are you breeding Apheosemions also? They are gorgeous fish.
    Thanks. He's eating his microworms and vinegar eels.

    I am trying to breed the Aphyosemions I have. I've put mops in their tanks but so far I have found no eggs. But the tank with the A. bitaeniatum "Ijebu Ode" has two fry which have hatched in the tank and survived. Pretty happy about that since I must be doing something right.

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    Forum Novice cgjedi's Avatar
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    The Dwarf Red Gularis fry is doing really well. It was in a small plastic container for a month. A couple of snails helped keep the water clean in between water changes every few days. Each time I increased the water level a little bit. Was putting in vinegar eels and microworms until it got big enough for a few grindal worms. A few days ago I transferred it to a 10 gallon where I have a few Blue Star Endlers. They should leave each other alone until the Gularis gets big enough where the Endlers could start becoming snacks.

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    Forum Novice cgjedi's Avatar
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    Default A tale of Bivittatum breeding

    A few months back I got 2 pairs of A. bivittatum 'Mbonge'; a really nice looking fish. It's a top spawner in plants. Since no one in the area has this, I really wanted to get some breeding going. They seemed to be of breeding age. Just a matter of conditioning them with lots of live food. They were in a 10 gallon with lots of plants at the bottom, some hornwort floating at the top and a few yarn breeding mops. The pH was about neutral and the tank was not heated and was around 20 degrees.

    I needed to be reminded that these fish jump since one of the females found a space in the top cover and ended up a crispy critter on the floor. I now keep the water level at about 80% so they don't have such any easy time leaving.

    Over several months, I kept feeding them mostly grindal worms and white worms. They got flakes, pellets, frozen brine shrimp also. I started adding flour beetle larvae when I started getting that set up. They chomp those up immediately. But I never saw any eggs in the mops. With a setup like this there should also be a few fry that hatch in the tank and make it to the top plants. But I haven't seen any either. I was getting anxious to get them to breed.

    The AKA puts out a regular journal. It's full of great information - stuff that is not available on the internet - even now. In reading through over 30 years of Journals I came across some interesting information about a breeding method. It seems that the European killi keepers have a different tank setup. Some people in the mid west started breeding their kiilis this way and have good success. What they do is fill a small tank 3/4 full of sphagnum peat moss. This is not the brown soil stuff but the top part of the plant with the leaves and branches. They put the adult pair in for the long term. Since there are so many hiding places, the fry that hatch in the tank can easily evade being eaten and the moss produces infusoria for the fry to eat. It is a very easy maintenance system.

    I gave it a try. I ordered some sphagnum moss used for orchids, poured boiling water over it to soak and put it in the tank. I filled it with water from where the adults were and then transferred the fish. They seemed to do fine - for a while. After a day I noticed that the fish didn't want to eat. Then they started hanging out on top of the moss. Then I noticed one of the males was dead against the far side of the tank. I immediately transferred the other two back to the original tank where they didn't look so good. I tested the water and it was well below pH 6.0. Seems the moss made the water too acidic too fast for the fish to handle. The article didn't mention anything about that kind of issue. Just goes to show that you still have to be careful of even articles written by experts.

    The pair quickly recovered and started eating properly again. I noticed the female fattened up noticably and was probably full of eggs. I started checking the mops again and yesterday I found 2 eggs near the top knot of one of the mops. I put them in a small container of the aquarium water with a tablespoon of peat (the soil). I'll check again over the next few days for more eggs. Then I'll pouring the container into a net and squeeze out the water and put the peat in a dark place for a few weeks. They take about 2-3 weeks to develop. I'll then wet the eggs and see if any will hatch.

    Pretty stoked to finally see some breeding action and hoping to get this fish established.
    geealexg likes this.

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    Very interesting about sphagnum moss, thanks for sharing this information. Hmm, could subwassertung be used the same way? Let say 2-3” floating near the bottom?

    Are you checking hornwort for eggs same time as breeding mops?
    I had A. Australe a few years back and they preferred elodea densa over breeding mop.

 

 
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