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In a message dated 11/22/00 11:32:00 PM Pacific Standard Time,
TranquilityBase at netzero_net writes:
<< Subj: RE: NOTHO-FADE-AWAY
Date: 11/22/00 11:32:00 PM Pacific Standard Time
From: TranquilityBase at netzero_net (Tranquility Base)
Sender: owner-killietalk at aka_org
Reply-to: killietalk at aka_org
To: killietalk at aka_org
I spent six months developing the scrubber culture for white and grindle
worms and have reached a certainlevel of success. I have 9 Scrubber cultures
of white and grindle worms which sometimes produce more worms than I need.
If I do not harvest, the culture will self destruct. I was raised with
waste not want not as a credo. I have raised Killies on primarily these
worms for some time now suplimenting with the frozen blood worms as well as
frozen brine shrimp. Sometimes I feed high grade flakes. As these worms are
about the cheapest bulk food there is I find I hate the idea of going away
from them. Ii have joked that the my idea if aquaculture is converting
oatmeal to income.
I wouldn't go away from them; I would just use them less and target
them for conditioning not a daily diet. I know its tough to waste an
abundance of good food and spend money on prepared food, but why don't you
try to make up a batch of Rosario's salmon-based frozen food. (Rosario is an
old (30 years) and dear friend.) Then you could try the Wattley garlic juice
remedy, plus have alot of a good, fairly cheap food. I would be concerned
about feeding fry so many white worms. They are so rich. I use earthworm
flakes, which the fish seem to enjoy. And like I said, chop the worms -- an
old Rosario lesson. Rosario is the one who got me to stop feeding tubifex and
beef heart daily to my fish. He said it was ruining the color and making them
fat -- he was right.
I have been working on a recipe for culturing fruitflies
fom instant mashed potatoes for about a year now with limited success. I
was down to six flies two weeks ago, but now have hundreds of maggots. I am
now experimenting with acriflavine in my culture medium.
I buy the lab mix from Carolina Biological Supply and cannot feed all
the flies I get. I bet one of the lab guys on here would know of a good cheap
recipe. G. zonatus just go nuts over flies.
Much like my
daphnia cultures, I can keep them going but have generated a very
inconsistant food supply from them.
They are a trick. I only get enough for treats. I feed baby food sweet
potatos in water to cultures in 10 gallon tanks that have a big box filter
full of gravel for a bio filter and I change water -- 2/3s -- every week or
two. The daphnia magna (pulex is really undependable) are a beautiful orange
Nothos need to reach sufficient size to
benefit from fruit flies anyway. As I feed mostly baby worms, their parents
tend to remain behind in the scrubbers, I can wean my fish off BBS
BBS does help color and finnage though -- another old Rosario lesson.
Mashing up adult brine shrimp is great too for fry. The decap eggs are cheap
and maybe the Nothos would go for them if you mixed them with live bbs at
first. I use alot of decap now --- its a great food. The frozen salmon food
would also be good for fry.
In any event I will continue to work on flies and
daphnia. Your suggestion regarding feeding is an excellent one! Improving
the general nutritional health of my fish seem at face value to be overall
very desirable. I saw Roasrio LaCorte yesterday and he was kind enough to
share his Moena Daphnia culture with me. If I can get it going this may
Nice fishroom that man has!!!!! He told me about a new long finned
tetra he just received from Canada. Would love to see it.
With regard to my water quality, I do water changes roughly bi-weekly.
More often if possible. Its the BIGGEE in healthy fish -- by far!
monitor the PH as an indicator of problems as well as amonia and nitrite.
My water is soft and alkaline.
Maybe harden it a little and see what that does. Then the peat wouldn't
effect the water as much and you could get the health benefits from the peat
still. Do you filter your tanks?
Since I have eliminated peat moss from my
breeding setup in favor of very fine black sand, it tends to remain stable
Put the peat in box filters as a filter medium.
I do not cull fish or select breeders in any way. if the fish can get to
the sandbox accompanied by a playmate he or she is welcome to play.
I would rethink this as I feel most "inbreeding" is really just bad
fishkeeping and not really a problem of genetics. Rosario has kept the same
line of emperor tetras for 40 years; the same line of N. furzeri for 30
years; he kept a line of N. melanospilus for 30 years and a line of F.
thieryi for 25 years. How did he do this without ever outcrossing? Simple. He
raised alot of fry, chose the very best of BOTH sexes and bred only those.
Then he gave the fish great care. Are they inbred -- yes! Are they sickly,
unhealthy, weirded-out fish -- not at all. Killipeople have alot to learn
from livebearer people on how to maintain and improve fish over the long
haul. We keep trying to duplicate a pond's process, when we need to master
how to work with genetics in an aquarium. Keeping two distantly related lines
of the same species and periodically backcrossing would be one way. It works
great on fancy livebearers. Raising lots of fry to choose from is another
way. I think fish in general were better years ago because there was less
selection, so people pampered what they had and did not demand or expect
endless new species.
sand trays in with my fish and usually get hundreds of eggs on a biweekly
basis despite the snails etc. My first pair of Gun from which all of my Gun
are decended was the least attractive specimens which I ever saw. Having
killed off the previous attractive pairs I had I saw no reason not to work
with the last pair left alive. Most of my fish are beautiful. but as they
come from a limited genepool I dont have any genes to waste. To make
matters worse I found out that I got them second hand from someone else who
started out with only one pair many many pair years ago. Six months ago I
sold off a batch of 10 week old GUN keeping only one male from that batch as
it had a completely transparent tail. One week later when left alone it
colored up spectacularly. I sold it at auction along with a mate from a
subsequent batch. It now resides in an aquarium with angelfish and from its
current owners description, is one of the most GUN he has ever seen. It
must be nearing one year old now.
I wouldn't worry about them coming from just one pair -- Rosario's N.
furzeri were sometimes down to just one pair. The old "Roloffia calabarica"
survived quite well in the hobby from the 1930's until it disappeared in the
1980's and it was a line from only one collection! It only disappeared
because new species crowded it out of our fishrooms. It was a lovely fish and
had even managed to survive WW II and Hitler -- it was only in Germany until
after the war. It just couldn't survive greed and our quest for NEW! NEW! NEW!
My overcrowding situation would be best solved by either, winning the
lottery and adding on a new fish room or by selling off more of my Nothos.
Or by raising less. If you can only raise 50 fry well, then feed the
rest of the fry to your fish. Better to sell great fish and buy more tanks
with the money than raise sickly runts.
I have stopped selling the fish and am getting a backlog due to the
NOTHO-FADE-AWAY. The last batch of fish that I have sold to a local store
started fading almost from the date that I sold them. I stopped by about
five daus after I sold the fish and the remaining fove pairs would not eat.
Their siblings in my tank are still doing well.
Do you match the dealer's water with yours before you sell them? Do you
put them on the dealer's diet a few weeks before you sell them? Does the
dealer at least feed brine shrimp? Are they full size and the females plump
before you sell them? Nothos are a great commercial killie -- except for the
food question, as you are finding out. Plus, people sell killies at too young
of an age to shops. Get the fish to true adult size so they have some
reserves to draw on and are not still growing. Condition them to the dealer's
water and food and maybe fewer water changes before you let them go so the
world of a dealer's tanks will not be a shock. Does the dealer put them in a
tank by themselves? NEVER let him put them with any Asian bred fish -- never!
Wild South American and Florida fish are fine -- but NEVER Asian farm-raised
If my fish get a reputation
for dying before the store can sell them, my project to mainstream Notho's
locally will also become a thing of the past. My hope is to share the
wonder of these spectacular species with people who have never seen them
other than in books. The popularity of captive raised fish will accomlish
1) Provide breeders like us with economic incentive for our passion.
2) Expand our ranks to others who dont even know that they are killiphiles
3) Help to reduce the pressure on fish in the "wild".
4) Give fish keepers the oppertunity to have the fish they have only ever
seen in books.
GREAT!!!! Maybe just go a little slower, with fewer fish, raised in
more space and let things develop. Replace for free what the dealer lost,
plus a couple of extras for his trouble and he will be happy. Rome wasn't
built in a day. Have you asked Brian Watters or Barry Cooper for help. They
are both great Notho guys!
I started with killies about three years ago and I am still learning as I
go. Yesterday I saw my first Pt. Phazianum. I bought the pair at auction.
The female is sick and I am treating her with Melafix. Win, loose or draw
the male is awe inspiring. I felt the same way when I saw my first N.
Rachovii, my first GUN or even my first Gardeneri. Is there anything more
satisfying than sharing this experience with others? And better yet getting
paid for it?
I know. Don't feel bad. I once thought I would make a killing on the
100's of F1 nigripinnis fry I had. I sold off 100's of pairs and the shops
starting calling two weeks later saying they were turning into bellysliders.
There went that profit! (Too much beef heart and tubifex and maybe
temperature and crowding on my part -- not enough tanks and GREEDY!)
Back to my point at hand. I have also had new Nothos fade when I bought
them from groups which continue to do well. It has been suggested that
Nothos just dont travel well. But as I have been able to inadvertainly
induce fade in my own fish, possible by underfeeding, I realize that this
problem has to be resolved if these fish are to be mainstreamed. Nothos
have what it takes to be THE first mainstream killifish. They breed
abundantly, require little water space,grow quickly, are resplendently
colorful, play well with other fish and can adapt to a large variety of
foods and water conditions. Despite this, we have all seen them stop eating
and fade away.
This is their drawback. They are a weird little fish in this respect.
Maybe there is genetics involved. Always pick robust breeders and maybe the
problem can be "bred" out. I am doing that right now with a line of
netzahuatlcoyotl swordtails (the old montezumae sword of the 1930's). They
are great fish but a small % of the fry -- 5% -- waste away at about 3
months. I cannot stop it so I just destroy the fish. I can now recognize its
beginnings at an early age and I destroy those fry. My last batches (100+)
fish scared me. I wasn't getting any big, late developing males, only small
early developers. Finally, 2 "females" showed they were really late
developing males and my next generation was saved. Thank god I had 50 fish to
You know, Dick Haas, one of the founders of the AKA and a GREAT fish
guy did tons of research on Nothos. His dissertation is on sexual selection
in N. guentheri. He once met and talked with Louis Leaky on Notho behavior in
the wild, as Dr. Leaky was a fish keeper and loved Nothos. He doesn't really
raise fish anymore but he might have a few ideas. I will ask him if I can
give you his e mail address. Charlie Nunziata summarized Dick's research in
an article in a special Notho issue of JAKA that you can order from the AKA's
publication committee. It is all about when Nothos spawn the most, how the
females choose mates and LATE DEVELOPING KILLIE MALES AND QUALITY! Charlie
lists Dick's articles and you could get Dick's dissertation from University
Microfilms International in Ann Arbor, Michigan. They are on line. (This
reminds me, I need to send Dick some swords!)
By the way the fatalities in my devided 10 gallon tank have reached epidenic
proportions loosing about 15 per day. This is now clerarly not fade-away I
assume it is velvet my heater was off about a week ago for a few days. I am
treating with acrifalvine. 2 drops per gallon per day. This is the first
time I am trying this treatment. Does it sound right to you?
TOO MANY FISH IN THE TANK!!! Hey, try the salt treatment -- a Rosario
lesson. (He taught me alot!!!) Throw a small handful of kosher salt in
everyday until the velvet is no longer visable, then leave it at that level
of salt for a couple of days, and then start 1/3 daily water changes. It zaps
the velvet, is cheap and doesn't stress the fish too much. Velvet is hard to
see on fry so really use a good flashlight and look for gold "dust" on the
fins especially. Velvet loves an overcrowded tank and soft water.
Thanks again for your help, If I dont get to feeding my fish tonight my
problems will solve themselves.
See, there is always an easy solution. I hope this helps.
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