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Etheostoma variatum

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#21 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
  • Forum Staff
  • Ohio

Posted 11 December 2015 - 06:25 PM

Sounds like he really needs LIVE food (blackworms, earthworms, mosquitos, amphipods), at least  for awhile until he regains some weight.  You may be able to train him onto frozen foods later, but he's not going for them now and will most likely die if you dont try live foods.  Also, you may need to isolate him from the other fish for awhile so he can get his fill.  He probably cant eat as fast as the other species in the tank.   This is a common challenge with darters.

I agree, and have kept many variegates. Tougher than many. Really need live or be sure to get lots of blood worms down to them. Best bringing them home around an inch or so. Mysis seem to be an acquired taste.

The member formerly known as Skipjack

#22 Todd

  • NANFA Member
  • Oregon Ohio

Posted 12 December 2015 - 07:38 PM



I was actually able to get him to eat today.  I tied a frozen bloodworm to a piece of  rigid airline(not an easy thing to do) and placed it right in front of him so the bloodworm hit him in the nose.  He ate it almost immediately!  I dumped in the rest of the bloodworms and he actually chased a few of them. He did catch one but he spit it out.  That is the first time he has actually even chased anything I have tried to feed him.  I will try to target feed him over the next few days and maybe that will get him over the hump.  



#23 Casper

  • NANFA Fellow
  • Chattanooga, TN alongside South Chickamauga Creek, just upstream of the mighty Tennessee River.

Posted 13 December 2015 - 11:23 PM

Turkey baster.

Casper Cox
Chattanooga, near the TN Divide on BlueFishRidge overlooking South Chickamauga Creek.

#24 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
  • Forum Staff
  • Ohio

Posted 14 December 2015 - 02:16 PM

Turkey baster.

Yes, Many darter keepers do this and it works very well. Good suggestion Casper. Distract the minnows and shiners with flake and dump some frozen bloodworms via baster down into the bottom, preferably into some current.

The member formerly known as Skipjack

#25 Josh Blaylock

Josh Blaylock
  • Board of Directors
  • Central Kentucky

Posted 15 December 2015 - 05:23 PM

I've always had problems with Variegate Darters eating until recently. I added Omega One Mini Pellets, now they all look better. Not 100% sure if that was the cause, but it was the only new thing.

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