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Pygmy sunfish cold tolerance?


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#1 Joshaeus

Joshaeus
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Posted 20 September 2018 - 10:35 AM

Hello all! How cold tolerant are pygmy sunnies? Elassoma evergladei and E. zonatum range as far north as North Carolina, so I was wondering if they could take 50's or even perhaps freezing temps. Thanks



#2 JasonL

JasonL
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  • Kentucky

Posted 20 September 2018 - 12:51 PM

This spring I caught Elassoma zonatum here in KY in an swampy area that had 3 inches of ice the week before. Water temp was no higher than low 40s when I caught them. They were very fat and active and did not seem to be bothered by the temps at all.

Can't comment on the cold tolerance of more southern species of Elassoma though.

#3 Joshaeus

Joshaeus
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Posted 20 September 2018 - 01:30 PM

Ah...I guess zonatum is hardy to the low 40's then. I don't think the Florida species are as hardy, but I was expecting evergladei to at least handle 50 degrees. I was wondering about keeping an Elassoma sp in a water garden during the warmer months to breed them and improve their health, and wanted something hardy to at least 50.


Edited by Joshaeus, 20 September 2018 - 01:33 PM.


#4 JasonL

JasonL
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Posted 20 September 2018 - 02:03 PM

I don't think they'd do that well in a traditional water garden. You'd have to pack it really thick with plants with minimal open water for them to be happy and reproduce successfully Youd also have to exclude most other fish species. I'm sure it could be done but not sure that's really the look you're going for here. Seems like there would be better options.

#5 gerald

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 04:26 PM

I think any of the species will be OK down to 50 F.  Below 45 F, zonatum is the only one I'd trust.  You will not see them of course, until harvest time in fall, but I think you already know that and aren't expecting a "traditional water garden". 


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


#6 Joshaeus

Joshaeus
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Posted 20 September 2018 - 04:58 PM

I think any of the species will be OK down to 50 F.  Below 45 F, zonatum is the only one I'd trust.  You will not see them of course, until harvest time in fall, but I think you already know that and aren't expecting a "traditional water garden". 

Yeah...the idea is to improve the fish's colors and to breed them, not to visually marvel at them.



#7 Matt DeLaVega

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 06:48 PM

Heck yeah! Do it.


The member formerly known as Skipjack





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