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Re: NFC: Re: Breeder's Program Want List

I have always wanted an oyster toadfish.  John Quinn wrote an article for
TFH years ago about keeping them in captivity.  They sounded really fun.

In the past I have kept sculpin pretty successfully in relatively small
tanks with too much current.  Basically I kept them in a 20 gallon tank with
an undergravel filter powered by the largest powerhead I could purchase.
This created immense current.  On top of the gravel I place a layer of
cobble in order to hold the gravel down, and to more closely duplicate a
fast flowing PNW streambed.  Also, sculpin seem to have a high need for
oxygen, so the current helped oxygenate the water.  The powerhead had a hose
that plugged into the outlet nozzle that pulled air into the outflow, and I
used this as well.

The sculpin would not eat flakes or pellets, but did like live brine shrimp.
Eventually they would eat frozen brine shrimp that I released into the
current.  They would hunt it just like it was alive.

Temperature has always been the biggest problem with keeping sculpin.
Summer would see the tank become too warm for these creatures.  Having no
chiller most would expire.  I have found that taking young sculpin in winter
seems to allow them to adjust better too the aquarium, and often they will
survive over the summer.  When catching them in winter, I would use an
airstone and pump to oxygenate the water in the bucket, and then leave them
in the bucket overnight.  This would allow the water in the bucket to warm
up to room temperature fairly slowly, then the next day I would place the
fish in the aquarium.

I can't think of anything else about my sculpin experience.  Any questions?


A proud member of
The Greater Portland Aquarium Society
The North American Native Fishes Association:  over
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----- Original Message -----
From: Chris Hedemark <hedemark at raleigh_ibm.com>
To: <nfc at actwin_com>
Sent: Thursday, August 26, 1999 8:14 AM
Subject: Re: NFC: Re: Breeder's Program Want List

Norman Edelen wrote:

> Actually, I have been working on a current tank and a method of angling
> doesn't hook the sculpin.  I do intend on attempting to breed prickly
> sculpin next year.  They occur in the creek in my backyard.  When spring
> comes I will give it a try.  Sculpin are really interesting rather cute
> fish.

Norm I've never seen a sculpin but I used to have a cousin, the oyster
toadfish (Opsanus tao) in a marine tank when I lived up north.  That
fish was one of the coolest though he didn't do much other than eat.

It seems to be hard to find much information about keeping sculpins.
Any chance we can twist your arm into writing a bit about your
experiences in keeping them?


"Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls
and looks like work." --Edison

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