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Got my first natives in!

16 replies to this topic

#1 Kehy

  • NANFA Guest

Posted 20 September 2017 - 08:41 PM

I got a m/f pair of Bluespotted Sunfish, and a tadpole madtom. Not really exciting, but I'm already loving them. The sunfish already seem a lot more intelligent than the fish I'm used to. Even when they were still in the bag, they were looking at me. And now, a few hours later, I have no idea where in the tank they might be. The madtom has also been fun, such a relaxing fish to watch. A lot more active and outgoing than I was expecting too. I got my fish from Sachs Aquaculture. 


Male sunfish (smaller)



Female sunfish


Tadpole Madtom


#2 keepnatives

  • Regional Rep

Posted 20 September 2017 - 08:57 PM

I have kept both in the past and I would still be excited to have them in my tanks.  Bluespots are one of my top 15 or 20 sunfish and who doesn't love a nice tadpole Madtom.  Nice tank, they'll love it and you'll love them.  

Mike Lucas
Mohawk-Hudson Watershed
Schenectady NY

#3 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
  • Forum Staff
  • Ohio

Posted 21 September 2017 - 07:00 AM

I have kept both in the past and I would still be excited to have them in my tanks.  Bluespots are one of my top 15 or 20 sunfish and who doesn't love a nice tadpole Madtom.  Nice tank, they'll love it and you'll love them.  

When you say top 15 or 20, does that mean you are indecisive? :biggrin:


I agree with Mike those are great fish, and it appears that they will be quite happy in that tank. Very nice.

The member formerly known as Skipjack

#4 MtFallsTodd

  • NANFA Member
  • Mountain Falls, Virginia

Posted 21 September 2017 - 10:23 AM

Congrats on the news arrivals. I've had a blue spotted for a couple of years now and it is by far my favorite fish. Once they figure out you are a source of food they aren't quite as shy.

Deep in the hills of Great North Mountain

#5 mattknepley

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

Posted 21 September 2017 - 02:54 PM

Nice! Your first natives are cool no matter what they are, and those are indeed a couple of nice species.
Matt Knepley
"No thanks, a third of a gopher would merely arouse my appetite..."

#6 Chasmodes

  • NANFA Member
  • Central Maryland

Posted 22 September 2017 - 08:53 AM

Kewl fish!  I look forward to future tank updates and pics :)

Kevin Wilson

#7 Cricket

  • NANFA Guest
  • Phoenix

Posted 24 September 2017 - 12:34 AM

Beautiful fish and aquarium.

#8 Kehy

  • NANFA Guest

Posted 24 September 2017 - 01:17 AM

Bad news to report ): 

While the Blues seem to be doing ok (saw the first one out since I got them), the catfish got a pretty serious injury to his tail, and he's missing a solid chunk of it. I'm not sure what he injured himself on, heck, it could even be on of the Blues as far as I know. But he seems to be in rough shape, constantly swimming upwards into a corner. Anything I can do to help him, or is it best to leave him be? I do have another tank I can move him to, but it's a higher temperature and I don't know if the stress of re-acclimating him would make things worse. 

#9 littlen

  • NANFA Member
  • Washington, D.C.

Posted 24 September 2017 - 08:29 AM

Can you post a picture of the injury?  It is unlikely that those small Bluespotteds were able to do significant damage.  They're usually pretty peaceful.  Do you have a H.o.B. filter on the tank?  It is possible he swam by it in the night and his tail got stuck.  The struggle resulted in the wound you see.

I would remove it to another tank, and at a minimum add salt to ward off secondary infection.  Catfish are usually pretty tough and can recover from substantial injury.  Do you have a sponge filter in your current tank?  If you could spare it, you can instantly set up another tank (or pitcher of water even!) using the cycled sponge.

Good luck, sorry about your fish.

Nick L.

#10 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
  • Forum Staff
  • Ohio

Posted 24 September 2017 - 04:13 PM

Nick sounds pretty right on to me. Very improbable that this injury was caused by the Enneacanthus. Either from filter, getting stuck somewhere, rocks collapsing, or possibly it is not an injury at all. Could be Flexibacter. It is amazingly fast, and could look like an injury very quickly. Pics would help. Moving him to quarantine quickly is a good place to start. Flexibacter is one of those things that is almost always present, but does not become a problem until a fish is stressed enough that it compromises the immune system, or a small wound allows it to grab hold. Shipping is a sufficient stressor.

The member formerly known as Skipjack

#11 Kehy

  • NANFA Guest

Posted 24 September 2017 - 11:52 PM

Hmm, thanks for the input. Looks like things haven't gotten worse at least, and I'm now guessing it was the filter. Didn't realize I'd need a guard for it, but I can add one. I do have an empty 1.5 gallon that I can use, but no sponge. I have a small internal filter ready to go, though the flow might be a bit much. 

What amount of salt should I be adding to the water?


And this is the good side, the other side looks like he got 'skinned' a bit, but I couldn't get a pic. It just seems like a giant injury on such a small fish. 


#12 littlen

  • NANFA Member
  • Washington, D.C.

Posted 25 September 2017 - 04:20 AM

Yup, that looks like it spent some time struggling against a filter intake. That side doesnt look that bad, actually.

As long as secondary infection doesnt set in, the fish will heal. You dont want to add salt to your main tank, especially with plants in it.

The 1.5 gallon would be fine, but could be prone to sudden water quality shifts if you dont have already have some mature filter media. But ~12g of salt would bring your salinity up to 2ppt. The fish could handle a little higher but that should be enough. It looks healthy so you shouldnt have to worry about food for a few days. If anything, try live blackworms so if they arent consumed they wont decay and deteriorate the water quality.

Im nursing a fish back to health as well, so I feel your concerns about the damage to your new pet. We live and we learn! Hang in there.
Nick L.

#13 Kehy

  • NANFA Guest

Posted 27 September 2017 - 12:33 PM

Unfortunately I lost the madtom. Even with the salt and hospital tank, it looks like the injury got fungused and a secondary infection set in. I did make a prefilter for my filter intake to prevent anything like this from happening in the future. I guess now I'll be focusing on breeding the Blues.


#14 Kehy

  • NANFA Guest

Posted 03 October 2017 - 01:04 PM

I do have some good news to report. I added my paradise fish to the tank (so just the Blues and the paradise fish in the tank) and while there was a little bit of bickering, I think overall he's been a good addition. He's out and about constantly, and yesterday I actually saw the male Blue out as well during feeding time, and did see him eating for the first time as well.The Blue sampled the pellets that the paradise fish was eating, though he didn't care for them. I even caught a glance of the female poking her head out. It's nice to actually see the fish, and they look like they're healthy, so that's good.


#15 gerald

  • Global Moderator
  • Wake Forest, North Carolina

Posted 05 October 2017 - 02:46 PM

Yes, having a bolder fish in the tank often helps shy ones come out more, and might even train them to eat foods they wouldn't have eaten otherwise.  Paradise was probably a good choice; similar habitat to Enneacanthus on the other side of the globe.

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

#16 Betta132

  • NANFA Guest
  • San Gabriel drainage area

Posted 09 October 2017 - 12:05 AM

Beautiful tank, even more beautiful fish. 

Sunfish are really smart by fish standards, and even the little ones make great 'wet pets'. Really interactive once they get used to you, and they learn fast. You can probably teach them to come out on command for food if you clearly display a distinctive object before adding food, and feed at roughly the same time every day. 

Shame about the catfish, but he probably wouldn't have been helpful for breeding, he'd try to gulp everything up. 

#17 Kehy

  • NANFA Guest

Posted 12 October 2017 - 10:07 PM

Finally have started seeing my female Blue out during feeding times, and she's making up for all the times she wasn't there. She's a little pig! But I'm happy to see her, and she's showing some sparkles along her side, so all the better. The little male though is getting the short end of the stick. He's much smaller, maybe an inch smaller than the female and he's now a little too shy to come feed with the big fish. He didn't used to have that issue, but I think having such a confident woman around is scaring him. Just need to teach him to like cougars, haha. 


What size do Bluespots start breeding at anyways? My male is about 1-1.5" long

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