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I Live on the West Coast, first time Darters owner. (Pics)


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#1 Cv89

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  • CA

Posted 01 February 2016 - 04:30 AM

Hi I'm from CA and have been lurking this forum for a while. All the beautiful Darter pictures that pop up on Google always lead me here so I finally created my own account and ordered my very first Darters. You East coast Americans don't know how lucky you are to have such beautiful fishes in your local water ways so don't take that for granted. I've always enjoyed keeping local fishes more so than tropicals, but we don't have very colorful native fishes over here aside from Trout and Salmon which arent even aquarium fishes. Now that I have my very own Darters, it's hard not to sit in front of my aquarium for hours in awe that such beautiful fishes are native to the country. My Darter hobby have just began, though I hope the scorching CA summer heat wont kill the guys. Enjoy the pics.

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#2 Cu455

Cu455
  • NANFA Member

Posted 01 February 2016 - 11:59 AM

Nice looking fish.



#3 Isaac Szabo

Isaac Szabo
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  • The Ozarks

Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:25 PM

Very nice. I'm glad they're showing good color for you.



#4 Michael Wolfe

Michael Wolfe
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  • North Georgia, Oconee River Drainage

Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:36 PM

very nice lookers there... I like that top one... looks like christmas darter maybe?


Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing. - Benjamin Franklin

#5 Cv89

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  • CA

Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:54 PM

Thanks guys. My Variegate Darter haven't been eating though, the vendor said she was wild caught just a day or two before shipping to me. All others are eating but she shows no appetite at all. I'm feeding frozen blood works, mysis, and earthworms by the way. She just sits in the current or dart up the side of the glass occasionally. Any tricks tips?

#6 littlen

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  • Washington, D.C.

Posted 01 February 2016 - 01:19 PM

Try getting some live blackworms. Also, it's not that uncommon for fish to be reluctant to eat for a few days after capture and shipping.

But blackworms are very enticing and it should go for them soon.
Nick L.

#7 gerald

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  • Wake Forest, North Carolina

Posted 01 February 2016 - 01:42 PM

 You East coast Americans don't know how lucky you are to have such beautiful fishes in your local water ways ....

 

Oh yes we do.  Aquatic biodiversity in the southeast USA is a big reason why some of us choose to live here! 

 

I second Nick's idea of trying live blackworms. or mosquito larvae if you can find any.  Darters in the variegate/ saddled darter group are often tricky to keep well fed, especially if they're having to compete with rainbows, orangethroats and others that eat more aggressively.  Feed often - they're adapted to nibble all day long and wont eat  huge amounts at one time like sunfish, catfish, and most minnows will do.


Gerald Pottern
-----------------------
Hangin' on the Neuse
"Taxonomy is the diaper used to organize the mess of evolution into discrete packages" - M.Sandel


#8 MtFallsTodd

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  • Mountain Falls, Virginia

Posted 01 February 2016 - 04:11 PM

nice pics, thanks for sharing.
Deep in the hills of Great North Mountain

#9 Cv89

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  • CA

Posted 01 February 2016 - 04:32 PM

@Michael Wolfe, thanks its a Savannah Darter.

Thanks guys I'll defiitely try live black worms. And yes it's hard to get food past the faster more aggressive Rainbows. I'll defintely be ordering more varieties, can't get enough of these guys

#10 Michael Wolfe

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  • North Georgia, Oconee River Drainage

Posted 01 February 2016 - 05:02 PM

Thanks for the clarification, those are kind north and south (drainage wise) and I have seen them both in the wild, not surprised to get them confused with just a quick on line look see.


Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing. - Benjamin Franklin

#11 mattknepley

mattknepley
  • NANFA Member
  • Smack-dab between the Savannah and the Saluda.

Posted 01 February 2016 - 05:19 PM

Savannah Darter, nice! The other guys are no slouches either. We are spoilt for fishes in the southeast for sure. Hope you get that Variegate eating. I've had a couple darters that wouldn't eat frozen food until I threw some brine shrimp in the current fan. The fast movement and all the wiggly bits seemed to get them going.


Michael, we'll have to get together to chase Savannahs sometime.
Matt Knepley
"No thanks, a third of a gopher would merely arouse my appetite..."

#12 gerald

gerald
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  • Wake Forest, North Carolina

Posted 01 February 2016 - 07:17 PM

Matt's not really too spoilt ... he just smells that way.


Gerald Pottern
-----------------------
Hangin' on the Neuse
"Taxonomy is the diaper used to organize the mess of evolution into discrete packages" - M.Sandel


#13 Cv89

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  • CA

Posted 01 February 2016 - 07:21 PM

You guys are life savers. I went and got some live black worms and she finally ate something. Though she still observes her food for about five seconds before snatching them up and doesn't seem to scavenge but only take food that lands right next to her. Thanks guys now I can sleep soundly.

#14 mattknepley

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  • Smack-dab between the Savannah and the Saluda.

Posted 01 February 2016 - 07:31 PM

Matt's not really too spoilt ... he just smells that way.


Hey! I'd protest, but it's true...
Matt Knepley
"No thanks, a third of a gopher would merely arouse my appetite..."

#15 littlen

littlen
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  • Washington, D.C.

Posted 02 February 2016 - 08:57 AM

Just keep your eye on that guy....to make sure it gets plenty to eat.  This is especially true if you intend to add additional darter species to your tank.  Most are pretty hardy  feeders that could outcompete your Variegate.  Live adult brine shrimp are good to entice new fish to eat...but aren't as nutritious.   


Nick L.

#16 Josh Blaylock

Josh Blaylock
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  • Central Kentucky

Posted 03 February 2016 - 03:14 AM

Don't be surprised if your Variegate Darters don't eat and thin out until they die. I have tons of experience with this fish, and this seems to almost always happen with that species. I have yet to find that magic food combination. If you find it, please share.

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Josh Blaylock - Central KY
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I hope to have God on my side, but I must have Kentucky.

- Abraham Lincoln, 1861


#17 smbass

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Posted 03 February 2016 - 07:48 AM

I have also kept variegates quite a few times and usually they do not do well. I have had a few last longer in fact I had one that learned to eat pellets a long time ago and had it in captivity for nearly 7 years. So even though what Josh is saying is usually true it is not a 100% thing. It seems some individuals do learn to adjust to captivity and feed well but for some reason this is the minority of variegates. Giving them a wide variety of food options and frequent feedings probably will increase your odds of success.


Brian J. Zimmerman

Gambier, Ohio - Kokosing River Drainage


#18 Cv89

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  • CA

Posted 03 February 2016 - 01:38 PM

Thanks for the info Josh & smbass,

Yea mines is finally taking mysis and blackworms but never to the extent of having a full obese stomach like the rainbows. I opted for a Variegate from the vendor because it was the closest thing to the beautiful candy darters, but if you guys know any similar darters that fair better in a home aquarium please let me know. Living across the country the information are kind of limiting aside from Google, nothing really hands on, so keep the advice coming guys I appreciate it all.

#19 littlen

littlen
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  • Washington, D.C.

Posted 03 February 2016 - 02:56 PM

I have a Kanawha (E. kanawhae) that is doing really well in a 150 stream tank--competing with Redlines, Bluebreasts, Gilts, Greensides, Bandeds, Logperch, Snubnose, Bluespar,---and soon to be Fantails and Rainbows (and a couple more I'm missing).  Needless to say he has a lot of competition but does really well.

Disclaimer: I personally feel that this individual is doing well, but admittedly I haven't kept others of the same species in the past.  So it could be a fluke.  But I also attribute a lot of his success to the fact that it was in quarantine for 3 months with only a few other darters where it had plenty of time to adjust to A) captivity, B) different food items like mysis, bloodworms, and blackworms, C) competition from more food aggressive darter species but in a lower density than the big tank it is in now.

So I contribute some success to the long acclimation period.  Some people may not have the same time or space to do that which is why some darters don't do as well.  As mentioned however, some just fail to thrive over long periods.  Best of luck with that guy.  A very handsome darter for sure.


Nick L.

#20 Josh Blaylock

Josh Blaylock
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  • Central Kentucky

Posted 03 February 2016 - 05:18 PM

I had one Variegate do well with Omega One micro pellets. However he died when my tank crashed. The two I have now are slowly wasting away. so it's not a 100% thing but it does seem like they are much harder to adjust to food. I certainly hope the ones you have adjust well, they are beautiful species.

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Josh Blaylock - Central KY
NANFA on Facebook - NANFA on YouTube - NANFA on Google+

KYCREEKS - KRWW - KWA



I hope to have God on my side, but I must have Kentucky.

- Abraham Lincoln, 1861





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