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Apisto Borelli Mothering Question

Discussion in 'Apistogramma' started by archangelvk, Mar 30, 2019.

  1. archangelvk

    archangelvk New Member

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    I have a 23G tank with around 15 red cherry shrimp, 4 amanos and a Bright Yellow Apisto Borelli mother and her 23ish 1 week old Fry in a well planted tank. I was wondering when or if I should remove the mother? The first time she had fry, they all disappeared within a week and I didnt know whether the mother had ate them all or the father. But this time the dad has been relocated to another tank and was just wondering if I should remove the mother as well? Thanks in Advance
  2. Katsutaro Yoshimoto

    Katsutaro Yoshimoto New Member

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    What are you feeding the fry when they are free swimming and what kind of filter are you using?

    You can leave the fry with the mother for a long time if the male is not in the tank with her (like 3 months?). A hang on filter/canister filter will kill your fry if they get sucked up into it, covering the intake with a sponge is necessary to prevent that.

    Is this your female's first batch of fry? She may of freaked out and ate the babies. It could be because of inexperience of the mother.

    In my experience, I've never had the best success in apisto fry surviving until I started feeding newly hatched BBS. You should start feeding the fry as soon as they are free swimming. Without the BBS, I've had maybe 5% of a batch survive with the natural food in the tank. With BBS, the survival rate skyrocketed to 90-100%.

    Hope this helps and good luck!
  3. archangelvk

    archangelvk New Member

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    I am feeding my fry live micro worms mixed with Genchem Polytase. The Polytase is mainly for the shrimp in my tank. Once every day I also crush a small amount of flaked food into a powder and mix it in with microworms too.

    My HOB filter is covered with an intake sponge to prevent any living thing to get sucked inside so I know its not that. This is my females SECOND batch of fry but its her first time raising them without the male.

    Im hoping that the first failure was due to the male eating the fry and that this time she will be successful in raising them on her own.
  4. Mike Wise

    Mike Wise Moderator Staff Member 5 Year Member

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    Female A. borellii are one of the best mothers in the apisto world. They are so good at guarding fry that in the 60s & 70s borellii females were used as foster mothers for other, rarer species. I agree with Katsutaro. BBS are the best food for fry if you want to keep more than a few alive. Microworms make a good temporary substitute, but IMHO not for long-term nutrition.
    Katsutaro Yoshimoto likes this.
  5. archangelvk

    archangelvk New Member

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    Thanks for the input Mike. I just did a fry count today and it went from 22-ish to around 15. Now its hard to do an EXACT count because sometimes I'll see a pair of fry on the other end of the 23G tank by themselves. Im very tempted to move the mother but Im not sure now if its the mother thats the problem or the diet. Is BBS really the only food thats good for fry? There are literally no places around here that sell Live BBS, and I dont have another tank or the time (if its a lot) to raise BBS myself. Thoughts?
  6. Katsutaro Yoshimoto

    Katsutaro Yoshimoto New Member

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    Live BBS is going to increase the survival rate of the fry. I also agree with Mike Wise about microworms being a good temporary substitute in the beginning. But in the long term, BBS is MUCH better for them nutritionally. I would definitely not move the mother away from the fry. Apisto female's are great mothers and the fry that stay with the mother will grow much healthier/faster compared to fry grown without them.

    I'm not sure that buying Live BBS is really a great option either, even if you find a place that sells them. They are at their nutritionally best when they just hatch, and lose their nutrition after 6-12 hours when their yolk is gone. Live BBS are SUPER easy to hatch. I wouldn't have believed it until I tried it myself, and I will never go back to anything else! BBS eggs(cysts) last for a long time if kept in the fridge/freezer and will hatch in around 20-24 hours if kept at 78-82 F. All you need is two 1 liter bottles, non-iodized salt, baking soda, air pump, and some length of airline and you're set! If you want a more consistent hatch, you can place the contraption in a 1 gallon or larger container with water and a heater set to the correct temperature (78-82 F). I'm not sure if you need light to hatch brine shrimp, but I usually keep them in a well lit room for the first few hours and they seem to hatch without a problem.

    Example of Brine Shrimp Hatchery:
    IMG_2751.jpg
    (Source: Solid Gold Fish)

    I usually poke large holes in the bottom bottle, that holds the upper bottle. Then place the whole hatchery in a larger container that holds warm, heated water to make the cyst's hatch within 24 hours. It's very simple, takes up minimal space, and very cheap to do. Just make sure you source very high quality brine shrimp cysts to get a better hatching rate.

    Edit: some facts
  7. archangelvk

    archangelvk New Member

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    Omg thank you so much for this ! Im going to do a bit more research on how to do this and perhaps I'll try it for the next batch of fry (whenever that is) if this batch doesnt make it =(
  8. Katsutaro Yoshimoto

    Katsutaro Yoshimoto New Member

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    No problem buddy!

    We all learn someway or another how to raise those cute little apisto fry :) (even the momma is learning how!).

    Keep asking questions on this forum, everyone is very friendly here! No one starts as a pro breeder, well maybe everyone except Mike Wise :).

    (here is the setup I had a while back when I had lights going for a green water culture.)
    20190331_214454.jpg
    You can always message me via PM if you want to learn how to do it my way. There is also plenty of information on the web, like you said.