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Raising Fry etc
Thank you Robert - population rather than strain works better.
Chris, when you have a little time and you want to get into these specific
issues more, drop by your public library (especially if they belong to an
area co-op where they lend books back and forth). Do an author search for
Jurgen J Scheel. Or do a search for his books: Rivulins of the Old World
(1968) or Atlas of Killifishes of the Old World (1990). Nobody understands a
whole lot of his work first read. :)
Then go take a look at Robert's explanation again and it will make even more
Your female tanks are a good idea, when they have grown some in Bill's
And previously separated adults will probably give you a lot more eggs if
you spawn them in a small tank (well covered) with just a male & female,
spawning mop and sponge filter. Maybe just use live food so as to not mess
up the water quite as much.
If you get to that point, don't pick the eggs in the AM. Killies, like a lot
of egg layers, begin spawning with morning's light. They are pretty much
done by the middle of the day. In the evening (or a couple of hours after
the eggs were laid) the eggs will have hardened enough to be picked. (If the
egg then falls apart, don't go on a guilt trip, it probably wasn't fertile.)
One of the most successful and enduring killie breeders is WAKO's Jim
Gasior. He always seems to have great looking fish at shows and lots of
youngsters coming up. He does that by separating the adults and putting the
pairs together just long enough to get 20 to 100 eggs over a day or two.
Because males and females can't beat each other up, they usually have
excellent finage for shows.
Your 125 gallon tank with the gardneri would be breath-taking. Some plants
for decor and shelter will insure that they will take on even more color.
Your question of the males "going insane" without the females is a really
good one and it raises several lines of thought. As mentioned above, males
kept from females will be really eager to spawn. A well conditioned female
should be able to accommodate him in close quarters for a day. You will
almost always get a lot more eggs then you would in a day if the pair
regularly resided together.
If a pair is introduced to each other at a show, the male spends a lot of
time displaying to the female (that's what the color and finage business is
all about). Their colors deepen, they show a more active deportment and
dazzle the judges. (The last thing on your mind right now is "showing"
killies, but the comment may make sense in the future.)
Separated, the sexes will use food which would go into displaying/ fighting/
sometimes fleeing and spawning for growth and the development of eggs. They
may get bigger than some other killie person's fish of the same population.
Now - as to the insane males in the 125.... Without females and their
provocative pheromones the males will usually be less aggressive towards one
another. If they grow up together they will settle some pecking order issues
before they could really hurt one another. (The exception being fry
cannibalism if they miss a couple of feedings.)
What will happen when a male is removed from the 125 and returned I don't
know. In a ten gallon tank he might get beat up as they re-negotiate their
pecking order. (Their memories are modest.) Probably in a planted 125
(a.k.a. killie heaven) they would just get out of an aggressor's way or at
least be able to flee to seclusion if they engage in the mouth gripping, tug
of wars and it doesn't go so well.
Your system would be a terrific one for all of the killies involved.
I do feel a little bad in that we are encouraging you to spend extra money,
probably to set up a covered 10 gallon tank for each set of females.
Of course then if you want to get into breeding we can help you spend more
money - or if you have then already, use more fish keeping resources. You
will need to assemble some mops from a dark acrylic (synthetic) yarn, get a
covered spawning tank (a widemouthed gallon jar, one or two gallon drum
bowl, critter keeper or 2.5 gallon tank) and eventually a couple of ten
gallon tanks for grow out of the fry.
If you don't want to go that route, no problem.
Killie people probably need at least four tanks to keep a population
assuredly going. Compare that though to the fancy guppy breeder who may need
nine to a dozen tanks per strain.
Breeding aside, you've got my imagination going with that 125. That could be
a neat tank. The males would probably be good company with similarly sized
Don't try Bettas with them though. Gardneri understand a male Betta's
flaring very well. The Betta will get a buzz cut. :(
(Tried to warn that pet shop I sold the gardneri to. They always put a Betta
in each tank.)
Do have top cover (plants or cover glass) so you don't start collecting
Please keep us posted.
All the best!
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