Spawning SAEs

          Hi All,
               I have tried to send this info a couple of times over
          the past week. Apparently our network is eating outgoing
          email. If this ends up as a multiple post, I apoligize for
          the waste of band-width.
               Anyway. Over the past 9 months, I have had 6 spawnings
          of SAEs. Two unexpected, and four planned. The mortality
          rate of the eggs/babies has been extremely high. I presently
          have approx. 50 sub-adult/babies that have survived. I'm
          hoping these will give me a viable stock with which to
               Since I'm not sure this will get through our great hunk
          of wires and boards on the hill, I'll make it brief and
          just touch on the highlights.
               Some of the basics.

                    Varity of sizes. 10 to 90 US gal
                    Water: Ph 6.5 to 7.6
                           dH soft to moderately hard/hard
                           kH 3.5 to 5.5 per Tetra Kit
                           Moderate to Heavy planting
                           most with some type of peat filtering
                    substrate: vermiculate/gravel covered by sand
                    Purchased a babies ( < 1 inch) 8 initial, 7 true
          SAEs, 1 false. Lost two as jumpers, when I turned my back
          with the top open. They were purchased for algea control,
          and were teamed up with 4 Farws. and 4 dwarf clown Plecos.
          They do a super job.

               IMO some of the necessaries. CLEAN, fresh water. I have
          had no success using aged established tanks. I routinly do a
          10% water change every 2 to 3 days. I used a system
          presented to me by Shane Linder to create a Spring
          Flood/Rainy Season. This results in an almost 95% water
          change during the flooding part. This coupled with an
          abundence of food, live and frozen, triggered the spawning.
               Next. A good, not necessarily strong, current in the
          tank. Preferably along its length. But some quiet areas for
          the actual spawning. The mating dance is preformed in the
          current, the spawning in calm areas. The spawning dance is
          similiar to what has been discussed on the list the past few
          days. I have never seen a sign of territory claiming by the
               Lots of plants the eggs can be hidden in. I use lots of
          Java Moss in the calm areas of the tank. The SAEs are egg
          scatters. They will eat the eggs after the spawning is done,
          and any SAEs not involved in the spawning will dart in to
          devour eggs. Usually the all 5 SAEs are involved.
               Green water. I know. Why would you want to add algea to
          a tank. I add about 10% green water to 90% fresh ( I should
          mention I have a well, so I don't have to pretreat my
          water). I think this simulates a natural food source to the
               I have come to suspect ( only a guess at this time )
          that the water depth is responsible for the high mortality.
          Posibbly the SAE fry need to get to the surface, Similiar to
          Corys, to gulp air. My reasoning is that with the last spawn
          I lowered th water to approx. 8 inches, and had the best
          survival rate yet. I couldn't lower it any more because of a
          spawn of Panaque Nig. and Apisto Cauc. in the tank.
               I will post a more detailed letter of each spawning,
          especially the last because of the survival rate, when I,m
          sure that my email is going somewhere besides oblivion.
               Thanks for your time and patience,
                         Doug Underwood
                         underwod at ccmail_orst.edu