Chilodus punctatus, Müller & Troschel, 1844
Origin:Brazil; Amazonas, upper Amazon river, Tocatins and Orinoco river, Venezuela, Guayana, Colombia.
Etymology: punctatus L. : spotted.
Synonyms:Chaenotropus punctatus, Citharinus chilodus.
First European import: Germany, 1912, by J. S. Kropac.
First bred by: Brorsson, 1953, Sweden.
Description:See picture. Hoedemann(1969) reports that several slightly different varieties exist, depending on the origin.
Care: Require a large well planted tank with good filtration, slightly acidic soft to medium hard water, very frequent small waterchanges. Sudden changes in waterquality or slightly fouled up water easily lead to diseases and death of the fish. Temperature in the lower to middle regions(22-24) and tempered light are required. It's best to use peat filtered water with floating plants, and lots of hiding places created by for example driftwood.
Temperature:22-26 degrees(Reports vary from 18-26 and 24-28 degrees).
Feeding:Smal live food, algae and salad, flake food is also taken.
Size: Up to 9 cm.
Breeding: Although first bred by Brorsson, Feigs is the first one providing a detailed breeding report in 1955, and Franke provided a complete breeding report including 16 mating pictures in 1963. Use a large breeding tank, apply frequent small waterchanges, and raise the temperature to 25 degrees. Feed the fish well, especially grindal worms will induce the female to produce eggs, but a varied diet is required. Peat filtered tanned water, hardness below 10dH, and tampered light are required. Since the fish are very easily disturbed, it's better to blacken the glass from the outside leaving only a small window to look at the fish. After a sometimes wild chase by the males the fish will mate between plants just below the watersurface(It may help to lower the waterlevel in the tank). Eggs are placed on plants and at 25 degrees will start hatching after 36 hours, although it may take up to 4 days until the fry are completely out of the eggs. The fry will remain on the bottom for a few days more until their build in food supply is consumed. After this the fry will immediately eat artemia nauplii.
Sexual dimorphism: Males have a slightly elongated dorsal fin, and females have a more rounded belly.
Prices: Netherlands: 3.5-4.5€
Additional:In the picture you can see how sensitive the fish are to waterquality. As soon as the circumstances under which the fish are kept differ from the requirements, diseases break out, like finrot as can be seen in the dorsal fin.
Picture references: picture 1+2: E. Naus.
References: Baensch and Riehl (1996): Aquarium Atlas I; Hoedemann, J. J.(1969): Aquariumvissen encyclopedie 3; Pinter, H. (1975): Handboek voor het kweken van aquariumvissen; Franke (1963), Aquarien Terrarien, 10 (4) : 111-119.
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