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Trichopsis vittatus
Trichopsis vittatus, Cuvier, 1831

Origin: Thailand, South-Vietnam, Malaysia: Malakka and Sarawak, Indonesia: Borneo, Java, Sumatra.

Etymology: Vittatus= banded, Vitta(L) means band.Referring to the horizontal lines on the body.

Synonyms: Osphromenus vittatus, Trichopus striatus, Ctenops nobilis, Ctenops vittatus, Trichopsis harrisi(?).

First European import: Germany, 1899.

Description: See pictures. This fish grows larger than the other two family members, and has a more upstanding mouth. There are several varieties, some with no spot, others with one or two spots on the side.

Care: Can be kept well in a community tank, but only with small and peaceful fish. Higher temperatures bring out the colors. The fish are capable of producing loud noises, which can be heard clearly even in the next room. Frequent waterchanges are required, and a densely planted tank with little current, lots of hiding places, and tampered light will turn this dull brown colored fish from the shop(See bottom picture)into a really beautifull fish.

Temperature:22-30 degrees.

Feeding:Despite it's size small food; live, frozen or flake.

Size: 6.5 cm

pH: 6.0-7.5

Breeding:Difficult, Trichopsis vittatus requires higher temperatures (29 degrees) to breed. Well planted tanks with no current. The Trichopsis vittatus Click to see the full size image.male blows a single bubble at a time, and the bubblenest located at the surface isn't very sturdy. It's best to cover the tank completely with floating plants to hold the nest together. Mating takes place below the nest, and up to 400 white floating eggs(usually less)are deposited in the nest by the male. After mating has finished the male can become quite aggressiv towards the female, and it's better to remove her in smaller breeding tanks. The eggs hatch in a day, and the fry will be free swimming after 3-5 days. As you can see in the picture the fry immediately have a stripe, which isn't seen in other species. The male will guard the eggs and fry until they are free-swimming, sometimes longer. At that point it's best to remove the male from the tank as well. Feed the fry infusoria during the first two weeks.

Sexual dimorphism: Male has a pointy tail, and a more elongated dorsal fin. If spot(s) are present, they're usually larger in males.

Prices: Netherlands: 3€

Additional:The fish are very susceptible to disease after transport. Healthy fish are rarely seen in shops, often they are infected with Ich or fungus.

Oskam reports that feeding Enchytrae will induce eggs in the female.

Picture references:Picture 1: Unknown.Picture 2: Klaus Weissenberg, who caught the fish in the picture in Malaysia. For a fisherman's tale, check out his website http://www.uni-hohenheim.de/%7Eweissenb/index.htm
Picture 3: E. Naus

References: Oskam, H. C.(1955): Geschubde Exoten, Van Holkema en Warendorf N. V., Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Linke, H.(1980): Labyrinthfische - Farbe im Aquarium. Tetra Verlag, Melle, Germany.

Hoedeman, J. J.(1969): Aquariumvissen encyclopedie 5. Elsevier Nederland B. V., Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

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