FIREMOUTH KILLIFISH - Epiplatys dageti monroviae

Firemouth Killifish - Epiplatys dageti monroviae



Aquascaping - Photo: Wikimedia
I grew up in Ireland on the outskirts of Dublin, and at an early age, my father purchased a farm, which became the responsibility of my Mother. Because it was at the time of war, it was obligatory for all landowners to farm their acreage, as the food was in short supply.

Previously we had lived in a modest house, and now suddenly I was immersed in the life of the farm, as well as schooling. We had cattle, poultry, horses, plus a small menagerie of animals, which I had collected with great avidity.

These included rabbits mice, guinea pigs and a raven, (of which I taught to say a few words), canaries, and parakeets, frogs, tortoises, and more,

This added to a collection of dogs and cats. The figures ran to fourteen dogs, and five cats. The dogs invariably got into the hen houses from time to time, with predictable catastrophic results, all the small animals over a period of time would expire, for a host of diverse reasons.

This, needless to say, would make me feel very guilty, as I had not yet come to a full understanding of life, I did not yet realize that all small animals would leave this world to go to whatever awaits us all sooner or later. I have to admit, however that carelessness and other interests, sometimes justified the comments.

We had a slew of farm hands and servants on the farm, which made the TV series Upstairs Downstairs seem very clear when viewed many years later. Many amusing incidents happened with predictable regularity, horses, broke out of their loose boxes, hens got slaughtered by the dogs, the farmhands and servants created many involved "situations" all of which caused my parent's endless problems. These would make the subject of at least one book, which perhaps someday I will write, but for now, I will stick to this theme.

One day I was sent into the city, to buy some electrical accessory. It irritates me that I cannot remember what it was, but I entered a large electrical store which was closing down, as the owner had passed away. Whatever I was seeking evidently was in the basement of the store, and I was directed down the stairs. I presume I found what I wanted, but in doing so, I noticed about fifteen aquariums, almost all of them empty. I had never seen an aquarium before, and in one of the aquariums in the store, there was a lone black molly. A girl assistant told me that the late owner a Mr. Handcock (that I can remember ) was a very keen aquarist, and had this department as a hobby. Because the store was closing down, they had already sold most of the stock and equipment.

I knew immediately that come hell or high water, I had to have that aquarium and the black molly. I did not have enough funds with me, even though it was going very cheaply, I earnestly besought the girl, to "hold" the tank etc, plus the molly, I gave her a small deposit, and promised I would be back within 24 hours. Taking the bus home, I prevailed upon my Mother, to lend me an advance of my pocket money, in fact, it took 3 weeks or more, the next morning I was waiting outside the store when they opened, to ensure I could complete the purchase. Well! that purchase, changed my life, within a few months, I had 5 tanks, some purchased from the same store, before it finally closed, acquiring other items from other people 

I got to know over time. I was soon breeding Siamese fighters, as well as mollies and several others. However, the hobby was consuming not only my time and interest but taking up all and more, of my quite strict allowance. I soon found out that there was an aquarium society in Dublin which I joined with great enthusiasm, and then learned that there was no dealer with the closing of the Handcock store. Well, this opened a great opportunity, as by enlarging my collection and buying fish and equipment from England, I could pay for my hobby, and have even more tanks etc. I called this sideline business Irish Aquatics and saved over the next 5 years from my "trading" enough to pay for, half of my first home. At this time I was in Veterinary College, and although studies, sports, the ladies, and a host of other activities, occupied my time, somehow I managed to continue my hobby, and attend the monthly meetings of the aquarium club.

The club used to have a couple of shows a year, the members, as well as other societies, principally from the North of Ireland, would participate. There were categories of competition for best egg layer, best livebearer, best fish in show etc. The most attractive category by far for my taste was the competition for the most beautiful tank. Although the varieties of plants were limited at that time, the show tanks were amazing, especially as many members had access to a beautiful red sandstone which they used in many tanks as ornaments to set off the green plants.

I went on to do Marine Biology, some years later, as my love of fish, overtook all other interests in life. From there I went for many years into Aquaculture, and later on International fish farming consultancy. In 1989 I founded a company in Israel, called Red Sea Fish pHarm, in which I still hold an interest. In 1994 I started Fish-Vet Inc. which produces software for fish disease diagnosis, and this software is used by Governments, Universities, fish farms, veterinarians, and more. As a result of our cooperation with some forty-six professors in sixteen countries in the preparation of the software, we were able to create a few unique specialized treatments, that we also sell all over the USA. As a result of our cooperation

During 1997, I decided to get back into my first love within the hobby. I started to grow some plants, and experiment with making attractive layouts. I found that to achieve really good results consistently, one needed to pay close attention to many factors and that this required specialized equipment, which was not readily available, or at least not at a reasonable cost on the American market.

Why not try Live aquarium plants in your fish tank, they continue to grow and give oxygen to your fish. They look great and are possibly cheaper in my experience. Your fish will be healthier and it will be visually more aesthetic.


Neon TETRA Facts

"NeonTetra" by Corpse89  Licensed via Wikimedia Commons.
Neon tetras or Paracheirodon innesi are members of the family Characidae. Characidae is commonly referred to as Characins. Neons are natives of southeastern Columbia, eastern Peru, and western Brazil, including the tributaries of Solimoes. They can be found in black water or clear water streams

Neons are an all-time favorite among freshwater aquarium owners. In any given mouth approximately 1.8 million neon tetras are exported to the US alone. Their petite size most certainly contributes to their popularity. They rarely exceed an inch and a quarter in length. You can keep an entire school of them in an aquarium no bigger than 5 gallons. They are the perfect choice for desktop nano tanks.

These dazzling little beauties will add brilliance and color to any aquarium. The iridescent blue horizontal stripe that runs just above their spines almost glows under aquarium lights. Just below the blue, a second bright red stripe runs from mid-body to the base of their tail. These radiant colors are transposed against a translucent body. Their fins are transparent. You can see right through them.

There is a slightly more colorful member of the tetra family. Neons and cardinal tetras look very similar in appearance. Put them in the same aquarium together and most people wouldn• t be aware they are two different species. Both have metallic neon blue upper bodies and a brilliant red stripe in the center of their bodies. This stripe is found mid-body running to back the tail in neons. The stripe runs the entire length of a cardinal• s body.

Neons are by nature a skittish species. They spook rather easily. They are also very small fish that could easily be perceived as a source of nutrition by larger species. They do however make excellent community fish if you take these factors into consideration. An abundance of plants and or rockwork will provide sufficient hiding place and help them feel confident in their new surroundings. Avoid keeping them with species that will grow large enough to ingest them. Following these simple rules will keep your neons healthy, happy and most importantly, alive!

Neons are mid-tank swimmers. They are shoaling fish. Shoaling fish do not cope well when isolated from other members of their own species. Many will not survive in solitude. It is advisable to have at least four neons in your aquarium. This will help to ensure that they adjust well to their new environment.

There is yet another factor to consider when deciding whether these fish are right for your particular aquarium. Tetras are notorious fin nippers. The more neons you have together, the higher the likelihood that this will become a problem. Long, flowing fins like those found on a betta fish or a fancy tailed guppy will most likely prove to be a taste treat tempting to pass up.

This is a hardy species. These omnivores have an extremely high survivability rate in captivity. They are not finicky eaters. A good quality flake food for omnivores is the perfect staple for their dietary needs. The average life expectancy of neon tetras in captivity is 5+ years.

The exportation of species for hobby fish trade began to boom shortly after World War II. Neon tetras were among the first species to be sold under the label, tropical fish. Their introduction to Europe and the US helped to fuel what is now the multi-million dollar aquarium trade industry. At one time these fish commanded an insanely high price tag. Commercial fish farms have since brought their price well within a range of the average aquarium enthusiast and made them one of the most popular fish in the world today.

      Author: Joey Haworth - Article Source: GoArticles      



Monodactylus argenteus are popular aquarium fish.
Monodactylus argenteus is popular aquarium fish. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) 
Monos Fingerfish, monodactylus argenteus, are members of the family Monodactylidae. They are native to the coastal areas of the Indio-Pacific, western Africa, and Australia. These shallow water dwellers are not initially true saltwater marine species. They frequent the brackish water found in sheltered lagoons and inshore reefs when young. Juveniles can even survive in freshwater environments.

Monos are medium to large sized triangular shaped fish. Their bodies are distinctly similar to those of freshwater angelfish. The two are not in anyway related. They have white to silverfish bodies and frequently have two black vertical stripes on the anterior region of their body. This vertical striping accentuates the similarity between them and their freshwater look-alikes. Juveniles are further accented with yellow trimmed fins. This coloration vanishes with age. They can reach a maximum adult diameter of 9 inches.

This is a shoaling fish. Communal instinct runs high in this species. It is inadvisable to attempt to keep a solitary mono. You will want to have a minimum of four monos in your aquarium. Given their size you will require at least a 55-gallon tank for a mono-species setup and 100 gallons or more if you wish to keep them in a community tank. They are very active mid-level swimmers and will require plenty of wide open spaces. Monos have a life expectancy of up to 10 years of age in captivity.

The juveniles of this species demonstrate the prevalence of brackish water. As already stated they can survive in a freshwater environment provide it is hard water with a high mineral ion content and an alkaline rather than an acidic base. As monos mature they will venture further away from brackish water until they become a true saltwater species. If you are keeping these fish in a mono-species aquarium you will want to increase the salinity level as they mature. It should be apparent that only more mature members of this species should be added to a community saltwater tank.

Monos are moderately aggressive fish. Juveniles are timid in nature. These fish becomes more aggressive with size. They will never become assertive enough to be housed with truly aggressive species. Mono fingerfish are omnivores with voracious appetites. They are not picky when it comes to their eating habits in captivity. They will eat live foods, frozen or freeze-dried foods and flakes or pellets formulated for omnivores. They will even nibble on freshly chopped vegetables if given the opportunity.

There is no visible difference between the males and females of this species. There are no reports of monos being successfully bred in home aquaria. However, they are commercially tank-bred and raised on fish farms in Florida and parts of the Far East. A commercially bred fish is always a better alternative to a fish captured in the wild. Farm-raised fish are often half the price and have up to three times higher survivability rate. Farmed fish tend to be more uniform in size. Your local fish store or any reputable online retailer will be able to tell you if their stock is wild or captive bred.

    By Stephen J Broy

    Technological advancements in the aquarium industry continually redefine the concept of "home aquarium ownership." Just twenty years ago not even the biggest public aquarium was capable of keeping jellyfish alive in captivity. Now they make desktop Jellyfish Fish Tank Aquariums. And why would you want a jellyfish tank? Perhaps you should check out what the translucent bodies of Pet Moon Jellyfish look like under LED lighting. Pet Jellyfish give a whole new meaning to the term exotic pets.

    Article Source: EzineArticles


Tips on Blue Green Chromis Care

A male "blue-green damselfish" (Chromis viridis) - Photo: Wikimedia
Green Chromis or Chromis viridis belong to the family Pomacentridae. This family is comprised of approximately 360 individual species in 28 genera. It includes all clownfish and damselfish. Chromis is but a single genus within this family. The collective name damselfish describes a group of fish that spans more than one genus. However, most damselfish fall within the genus Chromis.

Green Chromis are indigenous to the coral reef systems of the Indo-Pacific. Although they are a marine species, they often inhabit the brackish water of lagoons and inshore reefs. Several closely related and remarkably similar looking species can be found in the Caribbean Sea and among the Florida Keys.

This species has slender elongated, oval bodies with an iridescent sheen. Not all green Chromis are actually green. There are three color variations; pale green, apple green, and pale blue. Regardless of color, they all have a mesmerizing shimmer to them as they swim about under aquarium lighting. This fish is commonly sold by the aquarium industry under the titles blue/green chromis, green apple chromis and green chromis damselfish. They can grow to a maximum length of 4.5 inches. In an aquarium, they rarely exceed 2-2.5 inches.

Many damselfish species take territorialism to the extreme. The green chromis is not among them. Neither does it become more aggressive as it matures. This is one of the mellowest, most peace-loving fish of its entire family. In the wild, they live in schools amidst branchy stony corals such as Acropora coral at depths of no more than 12-15 feet. This innate schooling instinct remains intact in the confines of an aquarium. They do not quarrel amongst themselves but rather feel more secure with like numbers in new surroundings. They will not tend to be as shy or skittish if kept in groups of no less than three. And a school of them looks exquisite in a well-lit aquarium.

Green chromis make excellent additions to a community tank provided their tank mates are of smaller varieties and equally docile. They are very hardy and easy to maintain. Green chromis are excellent choices for amateur aquarists. This species works equally well in marine reef tanks as it does in fish-only aquariums. A school of three or four can be kept in as little as 10 gallons of water. Of course in a multi-species environment, you will require a larger tank. In their natural environment, they will retreat back into the protection of the coral branches they inhabit at the first sign of danger. They sleep under the shelter of these branches at night. In an aquarium, they will require plenty of hiding places. They are quite active swimmers and will spend most of their time in the upper to mid-levels of an aquarium during the day.

These fish are planktonic omnivores. They are not picky eaters in captivity. You should not meet with any resistance getting them to feed. A good assortment of live rock will make them feel right at home. In nature, they often maintain algae farms by ridding rock formations of undesirable algae species. If they do not readily accept non-living offerings brine shrimp should entice them to begin eating. This can be mixed with larger and larger proportions of flake or freeze-dried food until they become accustomed to aquarium fare. Their diet should contain protein, plant and algae matter. A good brand of fish food formulated for omnivores may very well be all that they need. Naturally, a supplement of dried algae sheets and fresh chopped seafood will help ensure a well-balanced diet. Under proper living conditions, this species may live in excess of 15 years.

    By Stephen J Broy
    Technological advancements in the aquarium industry continually redefine the concept of "home aquarium owner." Just twenty years ago not even the biggest public aquarium was capable of keeping jellyfish alive in captivity. Now they make desktop Jellyfish Fish Tank Aquariums. And why would you want a jellyfish tank? Perhaps you should check out what the translucent bodies of Pet Moon Jellyfish look like under LED lighting. Pet Jellyfish give a whole new meaning to the term exotic pets.
    Article Source: EzineArticles


Corporate Wisdom From KILLIFISHES

Pseudepiplatys annulatus GCLR 06-27 Dandayah
Pseudoepiplatys - Photo   by   Joel Carnat 
Even if I cannot achieve, I ensure my successors achieve and make success continuously happening is the corporate message, the Killifishes conveys. The interesting point about the Killifish is that they live in temporary pools or water bodies. Indeed they are a group of small fish.

One may wonder why the evolution and nature have favored some fishes to live in temporary pools. Fishes are strictly aquatic. Water in any temporary pools will dry soon and once the water dries, the killifishes live in them will definitely die.

Many scientists would have wondered about the unique choice or preference of the killifishes to live in temporary creeks or pools. Whatever be the science, it has a management message for the corporate world. Perhaps, nature would have created killifishes, may be to educate the corporate people about what kind of leadership style they must practice and follow.

The killifishes are really smart. Better than anyone, they know where they live and the risk of water getting dried soon in the temporary pools. Before the water getting dried off, the killifishes lay their eggs in the water. The interesting point is that unlike the eggs of other fishes, the eggs of killifishes can withstand dry environment without getting desiccated. Like the seeds of many plants, the eggs remain dormant when water is not there in the pool. With the onset of the arrival of water during the next rainy season, the eggs hatch out and again the temporary pond will be filled with Killifishes.

The newly born killifishes eat insects and other water creatures in the pool and before the water dries off, lay eggs and the same 'legacy and saga' would continue without any aberration.

The management message to be learned is that the success is not what one achieve for oneself alone but what one ensures and empower others also to achieve. In corporate, the leaders should develop more leaders. One being an extraordinary leader is not enough but they should make many others also as extraordinary leaders.

How the killifishes lay eggs before they die, the corporate leaders must develop leaders to lead and leaders to make many more leaders even after they leave the organization. Once this management lesson is learned by the corporate from the Killifishes, the limitation becomes an opportunity and opportunity become a success.

Because of the above leadership quality only, it appears, the killifishes have evolved to live in temporary pools. The state of 'temporary' or state of 'permanence' has nothing to do with achievements. Winners never believe in such philosophy as well.

    Dr. S Ranganathan, Director, ClinRise Derma Pvt., Ltd., Chennai
    Author of a management book - Jungle wisdom for corporate management by Swami Sukhabodhananda and Dr. S Ranganthan



A emperor angelfish
An emperor angelfish (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The Emperor angelfish (Pomacanthus Imperator) is one of the three very popular angelfish belonging to the family Pomacanthidae. They are a favorite choice among those with large fish-only aquariums. It is also the most popular angel within its own genus, Pomacanthus.

One of the most distinctively colored marine angelfish, it has bright yellow horizontal lines on its blue body, while a black band lined with neon blue covers its face. Its tail is either yellow or orange. Juvenile Emperor angelfish are no less stunning. Their deep blue body is filled with electric blue and white concentric circles.

The Emperor angelfish is commonly found throughout the Indo-Pacific ocean, the Red Sea and even the Great Barrier Reefs in Australia.

As juveniles, they provide cleaning services to other fish in the wild. They will constantly pick at any parasites it may find on the bodies of other fish.

A pricey fish, juveniles are priced from $60 to $80 USD while very large "show quality" adults can fetch up to $400 USD.

Most species within the genus Pomacanthus are bully's in one form or another. The emperor angelfish is aggressive towards other large angels and is very hostile towards members of the same species.

Fishes from outside the Pomacanthidae family are generally left alone. It might bully large tangs, butterfly fish, and even larger wrasses but in general, other species are ignored.

The emperor angelfish attain lengths of up to 16 inches in the wild. That translates into lengths of up to 10 to 11 inches in an aquarium as angelfish rarely achieve their full length in captivity. At that length, it is still a big fish that needs larger aquariums to really do well. 150 gallons should be the bare minimum and a 200 gallon or larger tank is highly recommended.

Caves and overhangs really only work with larger tanks, most opt for an "open" scape when housing large angels such as the Emperor Angelfish. They require a large amount of swimming space.

The Emperor Angelfish is not considered reef safe. Though you may sometimes see them housed in reef aquariums, they're generally better suited to fish-only aquariums. This is because their diets in the wild include corals, sponges, tunicates, and algae.

They should be offered a good variety of foods from algae-based foods like nori/seaweed as well as meaty foods like krill and mysis shrimp.

A balanced food that is pretty good for your Emperor Angelfish is Formula Two. It contains a mix of seafood and an extra portion of algae for herbivorous fish. It is available in three forms, flake, pellet and frozen. If you're going for a good pellet food, I suggest trying the highly reputable New Life Spectrum instead.

The most complete food available for all large angelfish is Angel Formula by Ocean Nutrition. This food was developed with large angelfish in mind, they contain fresh seafood, vitamins, marine sponges and fresh algae. Unfortunately, Angel Formula is only offered in frozen form.

They should be given ample amounts of algae. You can choose either seaweed sheets from companies catering to angelfish or you can get nori sheets sold as sushi wrappers at your local supermarket.

Make sure you buy unflavored/unspiced nori when shopping at the supermarket. Just get the regular, plain nori. Raw nori would be even better. Attach the seaweed/nori to a clip and stick in onto the side of the aquarium.