Friday, January 28, 2011

Hunter-Butterfly Fish

* This fish is known as a surface hunter because of the fact that it is trained to hunt for prey by being at the surface. Also, because of the upturned mouth, it is easier for the fish to capture small prey along the water's surface.

* Creeks, lakes and swamps, are known to provide for the ideal habitat for the African butterfly fish, as the water in these regions tend to be slow-moving and still. Also, these places are abundant in surface foliage, providing the fish good cover from predators. When kept as a pet, it must be housed in aquarium of at least 20 US gallons.

* The African butterfly fish is known to be a super jumper. This is why it is imperative to have a good cover on the aquarium.

* A year round temperature of 73°F - 86°F is what is considered to be the ideal one required by the fish to survive.

* Coming to an important part of the African butterfly fish care, its a carnivore and its diet consists of crickets, flies, mosquitoes, small spiders, worms, and even gut-loaded small fish. Sometimes, even canned foods will also do. However, it does not prefer prepared food.

* If you plan to keep other fishes along with the African butterfly fish, then best it is to go for those types that swim in the bottom or middle. As you know, this fish which we are talking about, is a surface dweller, and it is aggressive towards other top-dwelling fishes. According to experts the best species of fishes which can mingle well with this one include Congo tetras, elephant nose fish, West African cichliads, and African knife fish.

* Slightly soft, acidic water, is preferred by this fish species, with a pH value of 6.9 - 7.1 and KH of 1-10.

* When it comes to sexing, you can distinguish a male from a female, only when the latter is carrying eggs. Because then, the female appears fatter than the male. However, one feature that may help in this, is the rear edge of the anal fin. In case of a male, it is shaped convexly, while it is a straight one for a female.

* When you are housing the African butterfly fish, ensure that the filtration of the aquarium is not too strong. This is due to the preference of this swimmer to dwell in still waters.

* As a beginner, the prospect of breeding these fish is not a bright one. And even if you are able to do so, raising the fry is another challenge. This is because, the juveniles will only feed on food that come floating into their mouths.

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