Re: SAE pix & fish response to plant pruning

> From: Liisa Sarakontu <lsarakon at hila_hut.fi>
> > From: John Green <jgreen at ibm_net>
> > 
> > Secondly, could someone point me to a resource on the net that would  
> > have an accurate, clear picture of an SAE?
> I have one on my homepage,....

Liisa had an excellent article in The Aquatic Gardener a few months ago.
I don't have the issue with me to quote which one but you can order a
copy from the AGA. I suspect the hand drawn pictures on Liisa's homepage
are the same ones in her article. Very good article to help in the
identification of the SAE and its look alikes. (AGA owes me for all
these free plugs :-)

> > Can someone help me save an SAE's life? I've had three SAEs 
> > This morning I found a small one dead and the other small one barely moving
> > but with a case of shivers...
> all I can guess is that the tank is too small for them.  They are very
> active and strong swimmers.  They might have been so upset from your
> plant pruning, that they have run to the tank glasses and hurt themselves.

I have to agree with Liisa's comment. I'd like to add my own (please take
it as a constructive suggestion). Sometimes we might be tempted to
clear out some dense plant growth so that we have a better opportunity
to observe our fish; the problem is our fish prefer not to be observed
so well ;-) With plants, we have a wonderful opportunity to observe
fish in a much more natural environment than what is typically found in
an otherwise empty aquarium! Bear in mind that with plants, we typically
increase lighting levels many times stronger than non-planted aquariums.
If you have that much light in a tank without lots of foliage, the fish
can be extremely upset. I believe this is also highly species dependent.
I find the best way to watch shy fish is at night with all the other room
lights off and to sit patiently for about an hour (perhaps watching TV
or reading) and then turn my attention to the tank. Some fish, like
my last remaining farlowella, seem to be only active when there is
very little light at all (the tank light is off and there is only dim
ambient light). I don't know why the farlowellas died. Perhaps the
lighting was just too strong for them. :-(