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A. elberti(bualanum) Jakiri
Hi Robert E!
Since you asked, I will relate some of my experiences
with this truly beautiful fish!
It is a member of the Kathetys subgenus and is found
in streams in the lowland plateau situated in the
north-northwest area of Cameroon. This area is
identified as Nord Quest with the nearest large town
being Bamenda. ( map at www.izf.net/izf/
A. elberti Jakiri is one of the larger locations of the
elberti types, perhaps the largest in body size. It is
a very pleasing green with sometimes shades of a
bright greenish-blue on the body. The body has
narrow red vertical bars that are very typical of the
plateau locations. ( examples of this would be
Matapit, Bafole, Bamenda and others.) The greenish
fins can get very long, especially if the male is kept in a
If given good care this fish is not hard to breed.
My main problem that I encounter with this killie
has always been a preponderance of males. I usually
get 70% males to 30% females. Since I usually raise
a lot of the fish that I am concentrating on, this
results in several tanks of gorgeous fish that I can't
do anything with but look at and admire while they
take up precious tank space.
I always use a pair, not a trio. The second
female in a trio tends to be a voracious egg eater
in my tanks. By the way, I maintain nearly all
of my killies in ten gallon tanks with box filters
( Lustar large round or corner box filters, the
only kind that I use after 30 plus years of trying
just about everything else.) This set-up is much
more forgiving as I have a heavy hand when armed
with a baster full of baby bring shrimp!
For maximum egg production I separate
the male and female for at least a week. I feed
the pair very well with live food and sometimes
with a paste food derived from Dan Katz's paste
Water conditions: Temp 77 to 79 deg F,
hardness 30 to 60 PPM, ph : 6.2 to 6.6.
I usually put them in a small tank ( 5 gallons) with
several large mops to give the female some cover,
in case the male gets too aggressive. Sometimes the
female turns into an egg eater in their resting
periods. To combat this I usually do two things:
First I take two rubber bands and constrict the mop
at the bottom and the second rubber band is twisted
on about one third of the mop length from the top
of the mop. This tends to make the females egg
hunting much more difficult, but the pair can still
wiggle into the center of the mop to lay eggs.
The second thing that I do if I am not getting the
egg output that I expect, is to make an effort to
check the mop at different times of the day. Many
times I have seen eggs in my killie mops in the
morning when I casually check the tanks. But when
I go to collect them in the evening, which is my
usual egg picking time, the eggs are gone or are far
less in number than in the morning. Sometimes you
have to outwit the fish, to get the results you desire.
Change one half of the water at least every
third day, removing any uneaten food ( by the way,
feed the pair very well while breeding with live foods.!)
You must remove all eggs every day. It is my belief
that the pair will eat some of the eggs if they are not
removed, and that this tends to act as some sort of
negative feedback, causing egg production to drop
off rather dramatically. As evidence of this, a good
sized pair of Jakiri in prime condition, set up as
I have said, will produce 20 to 30 ( or more) eggs per
day. If they did not eat the eggs, after five days you
should have somewhere between 100 to 150 eggs in
the mops. In reality I would find very few. And the
pair would be only producing a few eggs per day,
Jakiri eggs are good sized and easy to care for.
My standard egg handling techniques:
Pick eggs every day. Put in small container with
small amount of antifungal agent ( I use acriflavine)
I use clean aged water. Remove bad eggs every day!
A bad egg is any egg that has turned white, has any
fungus on it, or is clear but floats around and takes a long
time to settle to the bottom. These eggs are infertile and
will never be any good.!
Remove any eggs starting to eye up to a second clean
container. No acriflavine in this one, just be sure to
change the water every day if possible.
As the eggs hatch I use an eyedropper to move the fry
to a shoebox with plants and snails. The fry are able
to take freshly hatched baby brine shrimp right away.
Change 30 to 50% of the water weekly and you will
watch your Jakiri fry grow and thrive. When they are
half an inch long move them to larger living quarters
and use several tanks if you have a lot of them.
I hope this answers you questions about Jakiri!
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