You Can Start Your Hobby With Any Type of GOURAMI FISH

Golden and Blue Gouramis
Golden and Blue Gouramis (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Gouramis are very appealing species of fish to the fish-keepers because of their bright colors, hardy nature, and entertaining style of living. They are always energetic, playful and peaceful with other species of the fish in the same aquarium.

There are many different species of Gourami fish available to beginners. Here are some of the most popular ones -

1. Blue Gourami fish - They are also called three-spot Gourami. They are one of the largest fish out of the Gourami family. They prefer to live in shallow waters and in an area with abundant vegetation. Their body looks like elongated and compressed. You will find three spots on their body - one is on the tail, the other one is in the middle of the body and the third one is their eye! They usually feed themselves with insects from the water. With their bright blue color which changes according to their moods and movements, they are very popular.

2. Pearl Gourami fish - They are the hardiest among the Gourami family. When they are quiet in the water with the water moving slowly over them, they resemble like a pearl. They can grow up to 4 inches in length. They prefer low lighting and dark substrate. They are easy for taking care and they can live up to eight years.

3. Banded Gourami fish - They are also known as rainbow Gouramis because of their attractive color combinations. While their body is of golden color, there are stripes of pale blue color over the entire body. They are sturdy you should feed them a lot of vegetables to keep them lively.

4. Kissing Gourami fish - They have originated from Thailand. They are found in two colors - pink and silver-green. They prefer to stay in slow-moving waters like marshes or ponds. When the males of this species challenge each other, they will lock their mouths, so they are known as kissing Gouramis. In the open nature, they can grow up to one foot but in captivity, they may grow only up to 6 inches. So you should always provide a large tank for them. In small tanks, they may develop stress and may die. They love to eat algae and they have sharp teeth. If no algae are available in the tank, they will start eating the plants!

5. Moonlight Gourami fish - They have a unique shape which is quite different from the entire Gourami family. They are famous for one particular habit - at the time of spawning, the male will roll the female!

6. Dwarf Gourami fish - Originating from the Indian subcontinent, they love to live in a quiet environment. However, they can live peacefully with other species. You can find them in different color-combinations in the market. They are suitable for smaller aquariums. The only precaution you should remember about them is, always keep them in a quiet environment. If there is a lot of noise around, they will develop stress and will get sick soon.

It is better to discuss with the local pet fish shop before buying any of these. In addition, you can also make small research over the Internet to keep them well.

    By Chintamani Abhyankar
    Chintamani Abhyankar is a goldfish enthusiast and has been raising and breeding goldfish for many years. He is an expert on their care and an advocate for raising healthy goldfish the natural way.
    Article Source: EzineArticles



Ryukin Goldfish



Goldfish (Carassius auratus) were originally domesticated from the Prussian carp (Carassius gibelio). Selective breeding over many centuries has produced goldfish with various colors, color patterns, forms and sizes far different from those of the original domesticated carp.

There are so many different types of goldfish. The main types are.

Black Moors: The Black Moor is a black version of the Telescope.

Bubble Eye: The Bubble eye is a small variety of fancy goldfish with upward-pointing eyes that are accompanied by two large sacs under the eyes. Like ranchu, the bubble eye lacks in the dorsal fin and has a double tail.

Butterfly Tail: The butterfly tail or jikin is similar to the wakin except when viewed from behind the butterly tail's double tail fin has a pronounced "X" shape.

Calico:  Calico has patches of red, yellow, grey and black along with dark speckles on a blue background. This nacreous coloration usually extends over the fins. Calico coloration can occur in goldfish varieties such as the orandas, ryukins, fantails, telescope eyes, and others.

English: A Celestial Eye (Stargazer) goldfish
A Celestial Eye (Stargazer) goldfish
(Photo credit: 
Celestial Eye: The Celestial eye has a torpedo-shaped body similar to the Bubble Eye. The Celestial eye has eyes that are aimed upwards but lacks the sacs under their eyes. Like ranchu, the Celestial Eye is one of the dorsal less goldfish.

Comet: Comet is a long slender body and a long tail. Comet is a hardy type of goldfish that are suitable for garden ponds due to their high tolerance for cold water.

Common Goldfish: Common goldfish are a type of goldfish with no other modifications from their ancestor, the Prussian carp(Carassius gibelio), other than their color.

Egg-fish Goldfish: Egg-fish has an egg-shaped body and a long tail, without a dorsal fin and no headgrowth.

Fantail: The Fantail has an egg-shaped body, a high dorsal fin, a long quadruple caudal fin, and no shoulder hump.

Lionchu: The Lionchu is a fancy goldfish that has resulted from crossbreeding lionheads and ranchus. The lionchu has the large headgrowth like the lionhead and lacks in dorsal fin.

Lionhead: The Lionhead has an egg-shaped body without dorsal fins and a very straight back.

Oranda: The Oranda has a large round shaped body. All of their fins are paired except the dorsal fin, and the tail fin is usually split. Their head growth or hood similar to the Lionhead.

Panda Moor: The panda moor is a fancy goldfish with a characteristic black-and-white color pattern and protruding eyes.

English: A Pearlscale Goldfish. Category:Goldf...
A Pearlscale Goldfish.
(Photo credit: 
Pearlscale: Pearlscale is a spherical shaped body with finnage similar to the fantail. They have a straight back with a swollen belly, resembling a golf ball.

Pompom: Pompom is a type of fancy goldfish that have bundles of loose fleshy outgrowths between the nostrils, on each side of the head. The size of these pompom can differ greatly. Pompom  are available in different types with and without fins.

Ranchu: The Ranchu has a short, round body and short fins with no dorsal fin. The tail is set at a sharp angle to the back, and may have three or four lobes.

Ryukin: Ryukin is a rounded or egg-shaped body fancy goldfish. Ryukin is looks similar to the Fantail except for the hump back that begins right behind the head. A high hump is considered very desirable.

English: Clear picture of a Shubunkin.
Clear picture of a Shubunkin.
(Photo credit: 
Shubunkin: Shubunkin is a single-tailed with nacreous scales, and a pattern known as calico. Shubunkin is available in two different forms, London Shubunkin and Bristol Shubunkin.

Telescope Eye: The telescope eye is a fancy goldfish characterized by its protruding eyes. The telescope eye is known by several other names as well, such as Globe Eye, Dragon Eye and Demekin.

Tosakin: Tosakin has a body shaped like that of the Ryukin, its undivided tail fin opens and spreads so flat and wide horizontally causing the front ends to flip under at the front once and even twice. It is also known as the peacock tail, and may have originally been developed from ryukin.

Veiltail: Veiltail has very long fins that hang down from their bodies like a veil.


Some Of The Best All Year-round AQUARIUM TIPS

English: Fish in aquarium.
Fish in marin aquarium. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
When it comes to looking after your aquarium you need to be focussed on providing care all year-round. Below we look at some of the most important points

Temperature Control For Your Aquarium
When it comes to caring for your aquarium fish, temperature control is one of the most important aspects. Although we may really feel the weather outside, your aquarium fish are more likely to suffer from any drastic changes to temperature which occurs inside the aquarium. So the following tips are worth noting:

1) Ensure that you switch the lights off during the hottest part of the day.
2) Check that your heater is properly working and keeping a steady temperature. Water which is too warm may result in the fish suffocating.
3) If you need to make any change in temperature always do so gradually.

Regular Care and Maintenance of Your Aquarium

Regular care is needed if you have an aquarium. This regular maintenance should involve vigorous aeration and filtration. Make sure that you clean your tank out regularly to ensure that the fish remain healthy.

Aquarium General Tips

Following these general tips should lead to a better environment for your aquarium fish:

1) Limit the number of fish in your aquarium to maximise the amount of oxygen for each fish. It will also help minimise the number of times you will need to clean the aquarium.
2) Make sure that you think about the positioning of the aquarium – it shouldn’t be in direct sunlight as this may increase the amount of algae.
3) Research the fish before you buy. You need to check that each fish you put into the aquarium is compatible with the general environment and with the other fish. 
4) You should change 25% of the water in the aquarium weekly to help maintain a healthy water balance for your fish


How To check The Sex of DISCUS FISH

Discus 02
Photo by wplynn
Among the biggest question asked of the discus breeder is "how do I determine the sex of my fish?"

There are very few easy identifiable identifiers in this process.  Here, we will discuss the methods used by some of the top breeders.

In juvenile fish, determining sex is almost impossible.  It is only when they begin to pair off that an opportunity arises to help in the determination of sex. Juvenile fish, both male and female, have a rounded dorsal fin, and it is not until they begin to mature that a difference can be found.  As it is never wise to excessively handle the fish, close observation is in order to aid the breeder.

In Allnut Enterprises' King Discus Hatchery, for instance, it is an easy process to determine who is who, as we have observed these fish for a while, and can determine the sex of the pairs we own. This would be true in any hatchery. But to the uninitiated or casual observer, this would not be easy to do.

A few of the identifiers: The male will have thicker lips to aid him in his fight to protect the female, and will be more aggressive. He will be larger than the female, his forehead is thicker, and we have observed that if the discus is a bit shy, the male will have a tendency to stay between the female and the observer.

The dorsal fin of the male will be pointed, and the female's dorsal fin will be rounded.  Note that in the juvenile discus, this is not apparent.

The breeding tube of the female, between the anus and anal fin, is broader and rounder than the male, and will have a blunt tip.  The male, in turn, has a smaller, sharper breeding tube.  Be aware that this is only evident during spawning, and should be closely observed.

It has been said that the male discus fish will tend to have a less intense color and more pattern while the female tends to be more colorful but with a lesser pattern.  I disagree because too many variables are in place here, so much the health of the discus, the water parameters, and feeding pattern.

In an interesting text by Jeff Richard, he discusses an article from Diskus Brief, a German publication, which reports a very successful way of determining the sex of a discus by using simple geometry.  Jeff reports, and I quote: "Picture a discus facing to your left ... you would be looking at its side. Find the Dorsal (Top) and Anal (bottom) fins and look where the fins slope down toward the Caudal (tail) fin ... make sure you're looking at the fins after they have curved back toward the tail.

The Dorsal and Anal Fins become (almost) straight after the fins curve down (or up) toward the Caudal Fin ... extend an imaginary line along this straight section of the 2 fins back toward the tail which just touches the Dorsal & Anal Fins past the Caudal Fin. These two imaginary lines should intersect behind the fish. The key to sexing the fish is where the lines cross the Caudal fin. If they pass through the Caudal Fin, the fish is most likely a FEMALE. If they miss or just touch the Caudal Fin, then most likely it is a MALE."  Thanks, Jeff!

Sexing Discus is difficult at best.  The easiest way to do so is to raise a group of at least six to eight discus, and allow them to pair off when ready.  It is a beautiful sight to see this happen and makes the hobby well worthwhile.

    Alden Smith is a published author and has been marketing on the internet for 7 years.  - Article Directory: EzineArticles


KHV- KOI Herpes Virus

English: From USGS public information leaflet ...
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
KHV or Koi Herpes Virus is a potentially deadly virus which has recently shown up in the Koi industry. The first outbreak was reported and confirmed in late 1998, early 1999 in Israel. Since then, outbreaks have been reported all over the world, in  Asia, Europe, and The United States of America. As with the majority of Herpes type viruses in the world, Koi Herpes Virus is believed to remain with infected fish for their full lifespan. Even Koi that was exposed to the virus at one point or another are considered carriers, even if they did not show signs of the virus. The mortality rate for fish exposed to the virus ranges from 60 to 80 percent.

When it comes down to it, any Koi is susceptible to the virus. The only real way to prevent it is to make sure that your Koi is never exposed to it. As long as you are knowledgeable about the disease, the chances of your Koi catching Koi Herpes Virus is substantially less.

Koi Herpes Virus Facts

Since the first outbreak in 1998, quite a bit has been learned about the virus. Knowing the facts about the virus may mean the difference between potentially infecting your pond, and preventing it.

Once a fish has been exposed to the virus, it will always be a carrier. Even with proper treatment, these fish will never be able to go to a new home. Sending exposed fish to a new home can potentially spread the virus to other fish. Likewise, adding new Koi into your pond could cause the new fish to get the virus, and cause a potentially higher mortality rate.
There is no known cure for the Koi Herpes Virus.
Stress does not cause the disease in any way. However, stress can cause the disease to have a higher mortality rate.
74 degrees Fahrenheit activates the disease. This is extremely useful information because it allows for quarantining and testing to see whether or not fish have Koi Herpes Virus.
The virus can be spread a number of ways, including coming into contact with infected fish, water in which infected fish swam in, tools used when handling infected fish, and so on.

Preventing Further Spreading Of The Virus

Once your fish has been diagnosed with Koi Herpes Virus, the only real way to ensure that you do not infect any other fish is to consider depopulation. Depopulation is essentially the elimination of your entire population of Koi. While this might seem harsh, it is truly the only way to completely eliminate the possibility of any other fish from catching the virus.

When purchasing new fish, it is a good idea to quarantine the new fish separately from your current population for no less than 15 days. Knowing that the disease is activated at exactly 74 degrees Fahrenheit allows you to expose your fish to the right conditions for the disease to show itself. Koi that live in the conditions for this amount of time and do not develop any symptoms will have a substantially less chance of having the virus.

It is important to remember that when you quarantine your new Koi, they should remain under total isolation. This means that you should not allow anything to come into contact with the quarantined Koi, especially items that also come into contact with your current population. Separate tools, food, and water should be used, and never under any circumstances, should the tools used for your quarantined fish leave the area in which they are used. Another important thing to remember is proper hand washing procedures when handling both Koi and Koi items within the same time period.



English: Floating lilies, the sun light showin...
Floating lilies, the sunlight showing its delicate petals structure and waxed leaves adapted for floating. - (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Planting a koi pond is a challenge that offers great rewards. Not only will the flowers and foliage of the koi pond plants look attractive, but diverse plant life will help to achieve a healthy balance of nature as insects, frogs and the koi fish flourish together alongside the vegetation.

You may find some plants together with your normal fish pond supplies, otherwise, you will need to visit your local nursery and see what they have to offer in the way of suitable plants.

In the general scheme of things, there are many plants that are suitable for koi ponds, some of which will grow in the water, some that will float, and others that will take root in the silt or mud on the floor of your pond. Suitable koi pond plants may be categorized as:
o bog or marsh plants,
o marginal plants,

o aquatic plants,

o floating plants, and

o oxygenators.
Unfortunately, many water plant species are invasive in hot climates and they are therefore considered to be invaders. So check with your local forestry or water authorities and try, wherever possible to plant whatever is indigenous to your own region.

Marsh plants
Typical marsh-loving plants thrive on moisture and they will do particularly well on the banks of an informal koi pond. Some examples include ferns, irises and lilies. See what you can find.

Marginal plants
Marginal plants normally grow in shallow water, so they do well in the shallows of a pond, or on shelves that have been created for planting.

Water-loving grasses, reeds, rushes and various sedges will all establish themselves quite easily within a koi pond, but you need to be sure they won't take over the entire area. There is a huge choice, so be selective.

There are also many leafy marginal plants, some of which will flower. These include plants like water mint, water forget-me-nots, monkey flowers, water poppies, aquatic irises and many other species.

Aquatic plants
Deep-water aquatics live with their roots submerged in the water while their leaves and flowers soar heavenward. Like floating plants, they help to keep the water cool and clear by minimizing the amount of sunlight that gets to the water, thus preventing algae from flourishing.

There are quite a few aquatic plants including the yellow fringed water lily, the impressive Japanese lotus plant and of course, the good, old faithful water lily.

Water lilies are undoubtedly one of the most beautiful aquatic plants, many of which grow on the base of the pond or in natural crevices or containers below the surface of the water, sprouting leaves and flowers above the surface. Here you just need to be aware that koi often eat from the base of the pond and so might nibble away at the roots of lilies, in which case the lilies may not survive.

Floating plants
Floating plants do have roots, but these don't need soil or silt to feed them or anchor them. Sadly some of the prettiest floating water plants are banned in the US, including water lettuce and water hyacinth with its beautiful, pale lavender flowers. Just keep reminding yourself what a nuisance these plants have become.

Oxygenators are the plants that help to maintain the balance of nature within the water itself. They are submerged beneath the surface of the water and not only provide food for koi, but also give them a really good place to spawn.