There isn't a Biggest Story for Today, yet.
#1 F. sjoestedti Dwarf Red Gularis
bblack08 Posted on: 2010/10/4 13:37
I have 7 Dwarf Red Gularis I acquired in March 2010. They are now about 6 months old and the males are not showing much color. Despite good coloration on the fins the bodies of the fish seem to look very pale. I feed live California Blackworms each day with the occassional feeding of live brine shrimp. Water temp is about 72 degrees and pH is neutral at 7. I am thinking I may need to give them a little more time to mature. Any suggestions would be great.
#2 Re: F. sjoestedti Dwarf Red Gularis
scottdavis Posted on: 2010/10/5 14:14
You don't mention how much room they have. This is not meant to be a strong criticism but if we can give maturing killies more space, more frequent partial water changes, maybe more hiding places and "structure", the better off they may be.
I'm still pondering the TFH editor's (David E. Boruchowitz) series Time for a Change: A Mathematical Investigation of Water Changes, Parts 1 and 2 from 2009. He concluded that for aquarium fish to really thrive and for an aquarium not to become a dead-end deal, that one would have to change at least 70% of the water weekly! (If one thinks of how head-water streams or forest ponds may exchange or draw 90% of their water daily with the water table, maybe that isn't so surprising.)
One can fudge on that a little with lots of plants or using items in a filter which take out ammonia, but as Charles Harrison used to rhetorically ask on the old Killietalk e-mail list, "How does one clean up the dirty toilet?" Boruchowitz indicts the vast majority of aquarists, probably many killie keepers too and of course me, for not doing frequent enough water changes or changing enough water at a time.
So the first question we need to ask ourselves, is there more I/we can do to increase water changes?
And this is more for someone looking in on this forum than you, but if a person has gotten way behind in scheduled water changes, one would be well advised to either acclimate their fish to new water (perhaps drawn from a tank used for set-up water) and start over with them or begin with smaller, perhaps daily water changes and build up to a volume sufficient to restore a tank to health.
Boruchowitz suggests that 70% once a week will get rid of more waste material than changes of 20, 20 and 30% a week in steps. However if the tank is pretty rich in organic wastes drastic percentages in a water changes could really shock the tank's residents or even mess up the nitrogen cycle.
On another list, a gentleman active with both killies and temperate fishes admitted to changing 90% of the water every day or every other day. Someone asked him if he would do that after being away from home for a time. He was quick to reply (probably with a smile emoticon) that no, of course he would again have to work up to that regimen of those 90% water changes.
A friend who kept and bred quite a few discus also did 90% daily water changes. He blew my mind (such as it is) by running tap water, set at a certain temperature, through a carbon block pre-filter in his hose. The tanks were drained and refilled so fast that the in-tank filters never dried out. Perhaps they never suffocated the beneficial bacteria either.
Except maybe for a one-tank emergency, I will never, ever change water like those guys did. But it is interesting to know that it can be done. Let us file that under Perfect Platonic Universes.
With the blackworms, you are feeding your blue gularis a very rich diet. That means that they are probably passing more rich waste material (ammonia significantly included) that they would with other foods.
Speaking of foods, could you vary their diet a little? This may come under the "It may not help, but it can't hurt" file.
You are already feeding some excellent live foods. Your schedule may preclude fooling around with live foods not commercially available.
Variety in diet is beneficial. Sometime try defrosting something like a small quantity of Mysis shrimp, the larger bloodworms Hikari is coming out with or maybe some glassworms. (I leave the frozen pieces in Luke-warm water and rinse the defrosted stuff through a fine-meshed net or sieve.)
Heck, there are a lot of good commercially produced flake and crumble foods out there. For instance there is a color enhancing food from Tetra in crumble form, Tetra Granule Color Food, that my plant-spawning killies (including some Fundulopanchax) enthusiastically take. I feed that occasionally as much for the strengthening of their immune systems as for color.
Another water question one should ask is what is the hardness of your water supply. That is probably more important than pH. I Googled your city last night a little and in too short a time period didn't get a very good answer on Raleigh's water and couldn't find a Raleigh Aquarium Society contact's e-mail. I'm guessing that your water isn't too hard or mineral rich.
Still that is a good question to ask of your municipal water department or of the company the care of the water supply has been entrusted to. They should issue annual reports on the nature of your tap water for citizens and EPA supervisors.
An old "killie trick" with reluctant rain forest spawners is to drop the hardness of the water a little, maybe 10 or 20% at a time, using RO or rain water or even a gallon of "Drinking Water" from the grocery store (the stuff purified by RO, not rebuilt with calcium and magnesium compounds), Spawning season for a lot of rain forest killies (tetras, discus, Corys, Apistos, et al) is when the rainy season starts. Progressively diluting the water's mineral content somewhat copies the conditions where the rain causes flooding bodies of waters to flow into grassy shallows, which are ideal foraging and hiding grounds for fry.
Another thing to ask would be "is there a really dominant male?" The reign of one of those will cause males sexing out to delay their full shift to adult coloration.
Blue gularis will live a lot longer at 72 F than at higher temperatures. However if there is a heater on that tank or in that room, you might even tweak the temperature up 2 degrees F just to see if anything changes. (Aggression however can also increase with rising temperatures.)
These are all things I and others ask of themselves when things are not proceeding according to plan with killies (or a number of other fishes). I've ignored warning signs I should have responded to, sometimes to my sorrow, so certainly can't be very critical of others. Perhaps something or things in the list will be of use for you.
Good luck and all the best!
#3 Re: F. sjoestedti Dwarf Red Gularis
rpowell Posted on: 2010/10/5 14:47
Couldn't they be washed out due to too much light as well? I don't have lights on any of my tanks, including the one with my dwarf red gularis and mine are showing good color. I don't, however, know their age. I acquired them from the AKA convention auction, so I would guess they are older.
#4 Re: F. sjoestedti Dwarf Red Gularis
bblack08 Posted on: 2010/10/6 9:15
Thanks for all the great info. You have given me quite a few things to consider. I really appreciate the feedback and am planning to try a few of these suggestions.
#5 Re: F. sjoestedti Dwarf Red Gularis
lharper Posted on: 2010/10/6 10:29
I feed a lot of Black worms, but I really try to mix in a lot of other stuff. Flake foods, if they eat it, paste foods, live and frozen foods of different sort. I prefer to feed black worms only every third day, if possible.
You can view topic.
You cannot start a new topic.
You cannot reply to posts.
You cannot edit your posts.
You cannot delete your posts.
You cannot add new polls.
You cannot vote in polls.
You cannot attach files to posts.
You cannot post without approval.
GMF - Donate Now!