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Greatest dangers, life of a fish



 
 
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Old November 14th 05, 02:19 AM
Daniel Morrow
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Default Greatest dangers, life of a fish

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"Daniel Morrow" wrote in message news:...
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"NetMax" wrote in message
...
"Dick" wrote in message
...
On Sat, 12 Nov 2005 09:16:39 -0500, "NetMax"
wrote:

Does anyone want to try their hand at listing the causes of death

for
aquarium fish, in order?

For a new tank or in novice hands
#1 water shock
#2 disease through contagions
#3 overfeeding and/or poor maintenance
#4 death from tank-mates
#5 equipment failure
#6 disease through old age

For most LFS, same order as above (and what does that say about

their
procedures?).

For an established tank, or in experienced hands, the sequence

seems to
reverse around the middle.
#6 disease through old age
#5 equipment failure
#3 overfeeding and/or poor maintenance
#4 death from tank-mates
#2 disease through contagions
#1 water shock

I'd guess #4 is higher in mbuna tanks, and #2 is higher for

anyone
buying
fish.


I would sort by species. Black Mollies being first to die of

assorted
problems.

Live bearers after first year seem to die from assorted

problems.
Dropsy and swim bladder diseases among live bearers.

Non live bearers seem to be disease free and longer lived.

I have never lost a new fish and they all were shipped overnight
deliveries. Exception, 6 Clown Loaches arrived with heavy ich.

The
vendor acknowledge it was his problem. I destroyed all but 2

which
are doing well after over 2 years along with their 6 replacements

and
3 from earlier purchase.

Death due to poor handling, I fried a bunch with acid while

adjusting
pH.

I have lost 2 plecos within first 6 months. No obvious cause of
death.

I am curious why live bearers are so shorter lived and disease

prone?
They share the same conditions as the non live bearers.


When I was in the trade, I had very high losses with livebearers,

so I
complained to my importers who were also hobbyists. They told me

that I
needed to buy freshwater livebearers, not the regular fish, but

that the
freshwater livebearers were much more expensive and not always

available.
Here is the story:

Commercial farms are always looking for inexpensive ways to reduce

the
amount of diseases in their system (imagine row after row of

50,000g to
200,000g ponds). Treating an entire pond of fish with antibiotics

is not
an option for them. The hotter the water is, the less bacteria will


survive, so this is one method which can be used effectively

indoors or
in greenhouses (and to a lesser degree outside). The higher

temperatures
also causes the fish to 'artificially' grow very quickly, if an
appropriate diet is maintained. Salty water will also prevent

many
diseases, but not all fish can tolerate high levels of salt.

Livebearers
can, so commercially raised livebearers are born and raised in hot

salty
water.

Then they are shipped to the LFS where they are dropped into cold
freshwater (much colder than they are accustomed to). At this

point the
fish begin to react from water-shock, beoming particularly

suceptible to
diseases such as Columnaris. If they survive the transistion,

their live
expectancy is significantly shortened, to the point that I would

advise
customers to raise the fry and not concern themselves with the fact

that
the adults only live 6 months. Their fry appear to be perfectly
acclimated to the cooler freshwater they were born into.

The cost increase was about 20%, so I immediately switched over

(this is
really not a big increase considering the mark-up on fish).

However I
had a shipment of 'regular' livebearers coming from Thailand, so I

set up
2 banks of tanks (18 x 20g tank partitions) with 100% water change

and
mixed in the salt levels I was told were being used (I can't recall

the
level, but it would be in an earlier post of mine). The difference

in
losses was night & day (something like 1.5%). All of my staff were


commenting on the improvement. The only problem was that I had to

sell
them as brackish water fish, and it took me several weeks to slowly

bring
the salt levels down. I'm not entirely sure how effective it was
reducing the salt gradually. My losses were very low, and many of

the
fish got sold (with instruction on salt concentration and how

quickly to
reduce it), but my statistics are limited to until they got sold,

so I
don't know if their overall life expectancy was improved.

I then started receiving 'freshwater' livebearers (primarily

Guppies
which were the most affected, and I still had lots of Platys &
Swordtails, - and Mollys I always treat as brackish anyways) which

I kept
on the other side of the room. They seemed to have a very normal
mortality level, which was great.

After first year, survival of the fittest settled in. After 3

years I
see individual fish become mishappened, fungus come and go,

periods of
hiding, but month after month my stock remains stable.

I haven't bought any new fish in the last 2 years.


I'm going on 1.5 years, with one loss, and if more don't die soon,


they're going to grow me out of house & home ;~).

Sorry for the long post Dick, but you did ask, and I try to be

thorough
)
--
www.NetMax.tk


dick





What I find interesting with my livebearer (my fancy guppies) is that
for the first 6-12 months they needed no salt added to thrive, and
now after that period of time (I am not complaining though and am
happy that I have the solution of adding salt for my fancy guppies to
be perfectly happy and I think healthy) they will not thrive even
close to before without salt added. I suspect my strain of fancy
guppies has gained a requirement of salt after stages of progressive
generations (i.e. the requirement is genetic). It's interesting that
my situation is the reverse of what netmax describes (i.e. fish
showing up at a store requiring salt then after reproducing in
freshwater there the descendants acclimate to freshwater with no
salt), but I must say - a little salt added to the water makes me
happy if it makes my fancy guppies thrive and be happy and I think


That is "I think healthy. Good luck all and later!"

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