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|Breeding Corydoras melanotaenia
by Mark Bryson
irst described by Regan in 1912 Corydoras melanotaenia originates from Rio Manacacias a tributary of the Rio Meta and from various other locations in Colombia. Body colour is bronze with a yellowish sheen. What catches your eye are the clean fins with bright golden /orange colouration. This colour is more pronounced when the fish are in good condition or ready for breeding
I bought the fish at Huddersfield Aquatics 6th March 1999, on one of our club raiding trips south of the border. This is an excellent outlet that caters mainly for cichlids and catfish species, all wild caught. Four males (3.5cm) and two females approximately 5cm body size were purchased at what I thought was a bargain at £2.50 each.
When I returned home I set them up in a 45cm x 30cm x 30cm quarantine tank. Temperature 22c, pH 6.5. Filtration was by an air operated Bio 45 sponge and a corner box filter filled with ceramic pipes and crushed coral (this prevents the pH from dropping too low). Tank also included a small glass trough filled with fine sand and planted heavily with Java fern. Java moss was weighed down and placed on top of a piece of slate (10cm x 15cm). On the slate I had attached small feet, this allowed the fish a hiding place and some security as I found them to be very skittish. They were fed at least twice daily on a mixed diet of live whiteworm, grindal worm, Tetra Prima & Tetra Tabi Min.
The fish were maintained in the above conditions until 4th July 1999. I then re-located their tank to a higher position in the fish hut, doing this automatically increased the temperature by two degrees as the hut is space heated. I let things settle down for three weeks and then decided to have a go at getting them to breed. (Its the old story, you talk to other aquarists who say they have bred Corydoras melanotaenia years and years ago without any problems, but they never really enlighten you as to how they did it). I was doing my weekly 25% water changes to all my tanks, when I got to the melanotaenia tank. I did a 40% change using water straight from the domestic supply, pH 8.3, temperature below 16C. Fortunately this had no adverse effect on the fish, quite the reverse as 72 hours later (29th July) they had spawned. Water parameters at time of spawning were Temp 20c - pH 6.9.
2. All eggs
had now changed colour to light tan, some were eyeing-up.
Only six eggs fungused in all of the show tanks,
these were removed.
This article was written for Paisley & District Aquarist Society, Catfish Study Group UK (formally The Nothern Area Catfish Group) and Allan James' website ScotCat.
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