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New to natives and interested in Sunfish


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#1 El Todd

El Todd
  • NANFA Guest
  • Silver Spring Md

Posted 26 August 2018 - 03:49 PM

Hello everyone. I have a 55 gallon tank with minnows and darters and I would the next fish I collect to be sunfish.  There are 4 species I want to get involved with; they are flier, pumpkinseed, banded sunfish and bluespotted sunfish.

 

I have done some internet research but I have lots and lots of questions that only aquarists experienced in keeping various sunfishes would be able to answer.

 

For starters, I live in Maryland so if anyone has collection tips or places to go in Maryland that have healthy populations of these species, any advise along those lines would be greatly appreciated.

 

Second is tank size.  For the fliers and Pumpkinseed I am considering a frag tank type of setup, planted, around 125 gallon. I think a frag tank would be good because these species seem to always be comfortable in shallow areas. I know that plants can be difficult with these fish, so I was wondering if there are any plants that work even moderately well in this situation. Also, do fliers and pumpkinseed tend to hybridize or should I keep them separate?

 

Third thing I was wondering is what species can I keep with them? I'm assuming I can put a few banded sunfish in with bluntnose minnows and central stonerollers, but would they pester the tessalated darters if I introduced them to my current setup? Would it be OK to mix the previously mentioned minnows and darters with pumpkinseed and/or fliers?  On the other hand, would a redfin pickerel eat the bigger sunfish if those were mixed together?

 

Snails?  Will any snails have a chance with fliers?

 

Also, on a more general level, what are the best ways to reduce aggression in these fish?

 

 

 



#2 JasonL

JasonL
  • NANFA Member
  • Kentucky

Posted 26 August 2018 - 07:11 PM

I have kept larger Lepomis species such as pumpkinseed and currently keep several flier. Flier and pumpkinseed will coexist just fine and will likely ignore each other. That said, you won't be able to keep them with other smaller fish species for long. They will eventually get too big and target them as food.

I have never kept banded or bluespotted sunfish but they are smaller and should work with smaller minnows and darters. Others on here have kept them and may chime in.

#3 El Todd

El Todd
  • NANFA Guest
  • Silver Spring Md

Posted 27 August 2018 - 07:39 PM

How man fliers were able to fit comfortably in a 55 gallon tank? Were the pumpkinseeds generally the same size as the fliers when they reached adulthood?



#4 JasonL

JasonL
  • NANFA Member
  • Kentucky

Posted 27 August 2018 - 10:45 PM

Fliers are slower growing than Lepomis but will get to 6+ inches eventually. Pumpkinseeds a bit larger. If you kept one of each in a 55 I think you'd be ok once they got bigger. Normally you might expect some bullying in that situation but i just haven't seen any aggressive tendencies between Lepomis and flier. It would be worth a try in my opinion.



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