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Marine Ornamental Fish & Invertebrate Breeders • View topic - Bicolour Dottyback Breeding log

Bicolour Dottyback Breeding log

Bicolour Dottyback Breeding log

Postby William » Sun Dec 02, 2007 10:02 pm

11/11/07
I purchased 2 Bicolour dottybacks, one ~1.5-inch, the other 1-inch. I placed them into a bare 10 gallon aquarium with 2 3-inch lengths of 3/4-inch pvc.

11/12/07
The smaller fish looks very bad, the larger has been beating the crap out of it. I added 4 more pieces of pipe.

11/13/03
The smaller fish was dead and removed from the aquarium.

11/18/07
I added another small dottyback. This one also ~1-inch. This time, in addition to the PVC sections of the tank floor I added a bundle of 3 PVC sections hanging from line ~1-inch below the surface in one corner.

11/19/07
The smaller fish looked bad, it's tail was completely gone, it's dorsal was shredded, and it had several bloody patches on it's body. I added two pieces of glass to section off a corner of the tank and try to create a refuge for the smaller fish. One of the pieces of glass is not quite as tall as the water is deep, so the fish can move in and out should it desire.

11/20/07
The refuge does not seem to be helping, it does keep the larger out, but the smaller fish will not stay in it.

I removed the dividers, and moved the larger fish into a 20-gallon on the same system.

11/25/07
The smaller fish is still alive but I worry the damage is already done. It has not eaten since I got it and it is now covered in an opaque white slime. (some sort of bacterial infection). I began treatment for the infection with Seachem's Sulfathiazole.

11/25/07 - 11/28/07
Daily additions of Sulfathiazole.

11/29/07
The smaller emerged from it's pipe for the first time since I separated the two. AND IT ATE some shaved shrimp. There is no sign of the bacterial infection. (though it still has no tail) I stopped adding Sulfathiazole.

12/2/07
The smaller fish has continued to eat every day since the 29th. I desided to reintroduce the "pair" I moved the larger fish back into the 10-gallon. I also tossed in a few more pieces of PVC, this time 1-1/4-inch diameter.

The larger fish immediately started chasing the smaller one again. However the smaller has learned that if it curls it's body like a C toward the larger, the larger will back off for a few minutes.

The smaller fish is hanging out near the surface, in the corner with the suspended PVC sections.

I added another dose of Sulfathiazole as a bit of preemptive medicne as I'm sure the smaller one is going to take a beating tonight.
Last edited by William on Wed Dec 05, 2007 7:19 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby mpedersen » Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:44 am

Hey Will, hope you don't mind that I added the bolds to the date. Helps break up that long post a little bit.

Did you catch Li Chein's comments on my BlueBar log? http://www.marinebreeder.org/phpbb/view ... 3343#13343 - between his posts and everything I've read in Witt's book, it sounds like hanging PVC is the way to go to keep your female's safe!!!

Good luck tonight!

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Postby William » Mon Dec 03, 2007 10:12 am

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Postby The Ediaz » Tue Dec 04, 2007 1:05 pm

Even with all the hundreds of dottybacks breeders that will come to contradict me here it goes...

With species so aggressive like that you will need to place two small inmature individuals in the same tank if you place one slightly bigger than the other is gonna kill him no matter how big the tank is unless you have a reef with plenty of rock but good luck getting those eggs.

When you place two juvies the same size aggression is less at least no lethal. Feed like crazy squid and shrimp so the female will develop and will start producing eggs soon when this happens the male tolerates her and even when still attacks he will not kill her unless she stops producing eggs.

Ask you LFS to get you two small ones I ve seen them around.

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Postby William » Tue Dec 04, 2007 1:59 pm

I really don't care if it is fruitless, I'm going to give these two a chance until one or both end up dead. I chose this species because they are a really cheap (they have only been costing me $10 a piece) way to practice pairing dottybacks and there is an endless supply of them so I can keep trying until I get it right. But my real goal is to establish some pairs of more exotic species where I will only have one chance to get it right, and will not have the luxury of being picky, so I don't really like the idea that it is crucial to start with two identically sized juveniles, but it is something to consider when all else fails.
___________________________________________________________


Yesterday the smaller fish managed to fill her belly with shaved shrimp, and this morning when I turned the lights on, they were sleeping less than 3 inches away from each other. I'm hopeful that the worst is over.
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Postby William » Tue Dec 04, 2007 11:11 pm

I finally got around to taking some pictures.

And is it just me, or does the larger one look like it is fat with eggs???
The dominant fish
Image
Image

The submissive fish.
Image
Image
Last edited by William on Thu Dec 20, 2007 9:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby mpedersen » Tue Dec 04, 2007 11:22 pm

The one in the top 2 pictures does look a bit ripe...but maybe not fully ripe. Granted, I've never seen these spawning nor spawned them myself, so I'm only guessing based on how my other fish look right before they spawn.

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Postby Witt » Sun Dec 16, 2007 3:47 pm

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Postby William » Sun Dec 16, 2007 10:16 pm

Dec 7
Although it did not look any more beat up than usual, the smaller fish would not eat today. So I moved it, this time to a 10" plant basket.

Dec 9
The basket seems to be working out fairly well, the smaller fish seems comfortable and is eating well. it is obvious that they can see through the basket, as the larger frequently attacks the basket. The only downside, is that due to cramp quarters in my fish closet, it is difficult to see into the basket to observe them.

Dec 14
After reading David M's post about adding a window to the plant basket, I had to give it a try. I replaced one side of the refuge basket with a piece of glass. I really like it, it looks really nice and greatly facilitates observations.

Dec 16 I thought they could see through the basket before, well, now they can really see each other. The larger fish viciously attacks the glass, and even though the larger can't physically hurt the smaller anymore, just seeing the larger fish is enough to keep the smaller one cowering in it's pipe. It is probably a good thing that they can see each other, but it scares the little one so much it is not eating very well.

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Postby KathyL » Mon Dec 17, 2007 9:48 am

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Postby William » Mon Dec 17, 2007 12:22 pm

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Postby William » Wed Dec 19, 2007 8:45 am

Dec 18
Well, I did rotate the pipe's 45 degrees. It May have made a difference, as the next day I noticed the smaller fish spending much more time not in the pipe. But it also seems to be that the larger fish is accepting it (or at least figured out that it can not get through the glass) as attacks against the glass are far less frequent.
Last edited by William on Thu Dec 20, 2007 9:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby William » Thu Dec 20, 2007 9:25 am

Dec 19
I am tempted to let the smaller fish out of the basket and see what happens. Today they seemed to be getting along very well (though the glass at least) the dominant fish did not attack the glass, and smaller was not intimidated by the larger at all. The smaller fish ate quite aggressively for the first time.

On a somewhat related note, the dominant fish and the ocellaris that he lives with are not getting along all that well. The dottyback clearly considers the back half of the tank his. It viciously attacks the clown when it ventures back there. Aggression in the front half of the tank is much more mild, but not completely absent. It does not seem to be mentally effecting the clown though - it still eats fine and does not spend all day cowering in the corner, but it's body looks a bit beat up (some missing scales and torn fins). The clown was a bit skinny when I got him, so I'm hoping that once she gets fattened up a bit, the dottyback will back off.
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Re:

Postby mpedersen » Thu Dec 20, 2007 11:20 am

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Postby William » Fri Dec 28, 2007 8:39 pm

12/28
Today I decided that it was time that the smaller fish be reminded why it was afraid of the dominant one.

After both fish were good and fat with squid, I scooped out the smaller fish and released it in with the larger.

3 hours later the smaller fish looked throughly beaten shredded fins + bloody patches near it's tail. I chased down the smaller fish and put it back in it's basket.
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Postby William » Wed Jan 02, 2008 7:16 pm

Just adding some more pictures.

The dominant fish.
Image

The submissive fish.
Image
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Postby William » Wed Jan 02, 2008 11:42 pm

Jan 2, 2007 - part two

Tonight I was feeding them their second meal before turning the lights out, and I noticed that the water felt a bit cold. I checked the temperature and it was 74!!

I should not be all that surprised, given that they are outside and it's been dropping into the 20's at night. But when I measured the temperature yesterday it was 80?

The 80 gallon system had a single 300W heater in the sump(yea I know, all my eggs in one basket). So tonight I added 50W heaters in the tanks. (3 in total) Hopefully that will be enough.
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bi-colours

Postby mikegreen » Sat Feb 09, 2008 5:03 am

Could you introduce a larger fish that would unsettle the male, before you next let the smaller fish out? Move it out when they've settled down?[EDIT - see matt's thread Pseudochromis cyanotaenia Breeding Log re: "dither fish"]
Wife beaters seem less brave when there are bigger men about.
My pair were in a mixed tank with a 6" angel, 4" powder blue tang, etc.

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Postby William » Tue Feb 12, 2008 7:42 pm

February 12, 2008

For the most part the last month had been quite uneventful, they both have been eating well, and while the smaller fish has remained slender, and the larger fish has put on a lot of weight. Even though both fish are close to the same length, the larger fish must weigh 2-3 times as much.

Once a week I have been taking the smaller fish out of it's basket and "letting" it play with the larger one. Every time, the smaller fish would look pretty ragged after a few hours, and I would return it to the basket.

And then came this Friday. I let them have their play time, but but when I came back the smaller fish was looking ragged as normal, but when normally it was cowering in the corer, it was trying like crazy to get back in the basket on it's own, and the larger was chilling out in the back of the tank. I though this as a sign of success, that perhaps they have learned the routine, and if I just cut a hole in the basket, they might get along. (i did not actually cut the hole but was planning on it)

The next day(saturday) I noticed that the larger fish was a bit ragged looking as well. It was not as badly beaten as the smaller fish, and was eating well, so I thought nothing of it.

But then on Sunday the larger fish refused to eat. I did was still not all that concerned, as the smaller fish often refuses to eat for a few days after their playdate.

On Monday, the larger fish started looking really bad, and was limping around the tank. I dosed the tank with an anti-bacterial and hoped for the best.

And then today(tuesday), the larger fish was dead. :(

It's sad to loose another fish, but I don't think I was making any progress with that pair anyway. I guess I get another one this weekend. Perhaps I'll try a small one this time.
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Bicolour Dottyback Breeding log

Postby mikegreen » Wed Feb 13, 2008 3:18 am

When mine first one accepted the other(which was very slightly smaller) it(the original) put on a spurt of growth, and remained about half an inch longer. I had them for almost a year after that, and the size difference remained
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