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Re: KillieTalk Digest V3 #82
Gotta agree with Wright about annulatus when it comes to doing it the natural way.
I've bred both A. gabuense boehmi and Ep. annulatus "naturally". In the case of the boehmi, I didn't get as many fry as I did picking eggs from their mops. In the case of annulatus, their eggs are just too tedious to collect. To be perfectly honest - I never tried. I have found that annulatus like a relatively
well lit aquarium with lots of floating plants (riccia in particular), perhaps a floating mop and lots of Java Moss. They seem to prefer temps in excess of 68 F, so I get my best "fry collections" in the heat of summer when my fish room starts to become unbearably hot (like 75 F and lots of humidity). I am
including my "how I do it" bull for annulatus. Anyone wishing to copy or disseminate it has my permission.
Ep. annulatus (*)
Please note that my water has a hardness of 50 ppm, a pH of
between 6.5 and 7.1 and contains a teaspoon of salt per gallon for this fish.
I use a 5 gallon tank at eye level with plants ( mostly riccia, requiring moderate light from above and sunken Java Moss), a small green mop and a box filter containing only aquarium gravel (no cover and no filter material). After a few weeks you will begin to see fry at the air/water interface. They are quite
small (and fast). I siphon some 50% of the breeding tank water into another 5 gallon tank set up right next to it with the same plants - no filter. The plants apparently have enough microorganisms, etc. on them to give the fry food for the first week. The fry are sucked out with an eyedropper and placed into the new
tank. (Good eyesight and fast reflexes help a lot.)
Once I get to about 50 fry, I start another rearing tank. (You
should get about 5 per day.) When they appear large enough, I feed live baby brine shrimp. Once about half an inch in length, I transfer them to a ten gallon
tank. They don't cannibalize each other but I do cull out the larger ones from
time to time. Even at this; there is a fairly high mortality rate - perhaps 70%.
*Please note - you've got to have a pair of annulatus in the tank to start with - hee hee!
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