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Breeding Tips for A.Borelli

Discussion in 'Husbandry / Breeding' started by bbetta, Nov 12, 2012.

  1. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    Hi,
    I have a 72l planted aquarium with a trio of Apistogramma Borelli (2 Females + 1 Male) and six Ember Tetras(Hyphessobrycon Amandae).The last two weeks I've read a lot and now I'm trying to breed my Apistos.
    I started using RO five days ago.This period I feed them with frozen food(Daphnia and Bloodworms) many times a week and I also give them a great variety of flake food(Tubifex,Bloodworm,Artemia,Basic food,Protein Mix e.t.c.).
    I'm doing small water changes daily (50-60% of RO water and 50%-40% tap water)The water I add is a little colder.I sometimes filter the water with peat before the water change.
    The aquarium is planted and there are also three coconuts-caves for breeding, a big Red Moorwood and some leaves from a local tree which do the same thing with catappa leaves.
    Water Parameters: PH ~7.3 ( I hope it will go lower with the RO water) GH ~12 KH ~10
    Am I doing anything wrong? I would appreciate it if you tell me some breeding tips. :D
    Sorry for my poor English.:oops:

    Greetings from Greece!
  2. Mike Wise

    Mike Wise Moderator Staff Member 5 Year Member

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    A. borellii is not very demanding where it comes to pH or hardness levels. I find clean water (frequent water changes) and some live foods like Artemia nauplii are all that is needed to get the fish to breed.
  3. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    Thank you for your advice!I'll feed my fish some artemia.
    Is the analogy of RO and Tap water I use ok (60% RO water 40% tap water) ???Can I increase the RO water ( for example 80% RO water 20% tap water)?Any other advice would be helpful.
    Thanks
  4. Jayha24

    Jayha24 New Member

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    Hi Bbetta,

    I've only been breeding borellis myself for a little while but I can tell you what's worked for me.

    My water params are a ph of about 6.6 ammonia, and nitrite 0 of course, and nitrate is in the range of 0-15, and about 80 degrees F. I use 100% RO water in my weekly 30% water changes. All pretty standard.

    Here's where I do things differently. Keep in mind this is by no means the "right" way to do it. It's just what works best for me after much experimenting.

    First: I have a divided chill tank because I have limited tank space. One side for males, and one side for females. I put a pair in a breeding tank together, and wait for the magic. Usually a couple of days at the most. Once I'm sure the female has eggs, dad gets removed back to the chill tank. (Saw him eating the free swimmers once so I figure why risk it) I don't use dithers because the female is alone in the tank with her kids, and is much more relaxed leading them around than if there were other fish IMO.

    Second: I use the clay flower pot trays instead of the pots themselves. I cut an entrance just big enough for her to get through comfortably, and barely big enough for the male, turn it over, and hey presto a nice low ceiling spawning cave. I usually only have 1 real cave in the tank, because they have never chosen one of my alternatives.

    Third: I use as many live plants as I can, but still use a couple of fake ones as well just to finish fleshing things out. I don't have very many live plants because they just haven't grown yet. In any case the live plants that I ALWAYS have are at least one moss ball, and a clump of java moss. I believe that that the fry find microscopic critters in there that keeps them fed until I give them bbs. On the same topic though my tank is definitely not what you would call densely planted. Plenty of plants to break line of sight if need be, but still quite a bit of swimming room. Along with this I subdue the lighting just a bit so they still feel cozy.

    Fourth: This came along because of some research and experimentation. Everyone was talking about how Almond/Oak leaves or peat will stain your water to mimic amazon conditions. Well not having easy access to almond leaves I just went out to a broad leaf tree, picked some leaves up off the ground, rinsed them off real good in warm water, stuffed about 5 into a small bag made out of old panty hose, and plunked it in the tank. Low and behold it stained the water liked I wanted. The parents went into spawning mode not long after, and when the fry were free swimming they used it as a usual hang out because it had grown a layer of white algae. I believe this also let some tiny critters grow that the fry could munch on.

    That's about it. Nothing super high tech or involved. My filtration is simply the hob filters that came with the tanks, but with sponges fit over the intake to keep from sucking up the fry, and a small piece of plastic fitted on the outlet to keep from blowing them around too much.
    As a side note I am also breeding orange flash cacatoides this way. They actually share the chill tank with my borellis.

    That was an exhaustive post so apologies for the length. I hope something in there is of use to you, and good luck!!!
    Siggi and bbetta like this.
  5. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    Jayha24
    Thanks for your time!Very helpful post!
    Very interesting that the fish don't choose the real caves.At the moment I'm doing 35% water changes daily (80% RO 20% Tap water).I can see flaring but no breeding.I think they need their time.When they will breed I will transfer the cave with the eggs and the female to another 20l(5.3 gallons) aquarium.The aquarium will have water from the big one and tons of moss,peat and leaves.What do you feed your fish?

    Thanks :D
  6. Jayha24

    Jayha24 New Member

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    Absolutely :)

    Right now I feed frozen blood worms, brine shrimp, and on occasion high quality pellets twice a day. Once in the morning, and once at night. I use a large syringe with a piece of air tubing stuck on the end to feed so I only give them a few worms each. This way I'm sure they're eating we'll, and there isn't any uneaten food that can foul the water. They also recognize the tube, and come running :)

    Another thing you might try to get them in the mood is to turn your temperature up a couple degrees, and wait a week or so to do a water change. Then when you do make sure your fresh water is nice, and cool. Simulates a good rain after the dry season is how I understand it.

    Last if all that fails is to either remove one, or separate them somehow. Then when you introduce them back it's like they're just seeing each other for the first time, and that will sometimes get them to mate.

    Hope that helps. Let me know how things are going :)
  7. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    Thanks again! I'll let you know what is going on ;)
    If you think any other ideas tell me :D
  8. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    Hello,
    I decided not to do any water change till Friday(on Friday I will do 40% water change with cooler water),but I'm still replenish the water which evaporates with 100% RO water.I feed many times daily dried and frozen food and perhaps I will have a culture of Microworms and Walterworms till the Weekend.Today or tomorrow I will put some PVC hoses in the tank. Now they will have more places to put the eggs.:)
    The male is flaring one of the females.This female has brighter colours(yellow/black) than the other one.Also, I noticed something interesting. The male visits the coconut caves stays there for a while and then goes back and flares the female.He is interested to the female's stomach.
    I hope everything goes well.:D

    Thanks
  9. Jayha24

    Jayha24 New Member

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    That sounds great way to go!!!
    Sounds like your girls are getting in the mood too. Keep a careful eye. When you see the two of them enter the cave together you're pretty much golden! Ive noticed that once the female starts following the male around he may not seem to flare as much, but eggs are coming soon!
    Keep me posted!
  10. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    nothing yet......:(
  11. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    SUCCESS!
  12. regani

    regani Active Member 5 Year Member

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    congratulations :)
  13. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    Thank You!
    In a few hours I will put the female and the cave with the eggs in their own tank! 001.JPG
  14. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    The breeding failed she ate the eggs.I removed one pair of my fish to the breeding tank(40*24*24) 23litres or 6.1 gallons .
  15. Mike Wise

    Mike Wise Moderator Staff Member 5 Year Member

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    I am not surprised. Moving the cave/eggs/mother fails more often than not.

    Your tank is a bit small, but doable. It should be decorated better than the photo or you may lose one of the breeders. Fortunately A. borellii are fairly mellow apistos, so it might work anyway. Just keep a careful eye out for problems.
  16. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    Yes I have already decorated better the tank and I will put some more plants in it.I will put photos shortly.
    Thank you for your time
  17. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    This is the aquarium at the moment.There will be more improvements
    002.JPG
    What do you think about it?Any other tips are welcome.

    Thank you for your time ;)
  18. Mike Wise

    Mike Wise Moderator Staff Member 5 Year Member

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    Live foods, regular water changes (especially since it is a small tank). I would prefer a sand substrate on the bottom and low flow rate filtration. A couple of dither fish would also help.
  19. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    Live Foods:I now have Microworms and Walterworms but they don't it because they are too small.Tomorrow I will finally have Grindal Worms!
    Regular WC:I am planning to do a 20-30% Water Change daily.
    Low flow rate filtration:It's done
    Substrate: I can't offer them sand substrate right now ,but I will make a leaf litter and I will add some more peat for the bottom.More photos when it's done.
    Dither Fish:Because the tank is new (it is running for 3 days with water and with biology and materials from the big tank-water params are ok), I don't want to put more fish at the moment.Are Ember tetras good dithers?

    Mike thank you again you are very helpful ;)
  20. bbetta

    bbetta Member 5 Year Member

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    No flaring yet. I guess they need more time.I added more dead leaves for leaf litter and tomorrow I'm feeding them Grindal.I follow all the instructions you told me.
    I hope everything goes well :confused:

    new pics soon