Things I think About

There are many things I think aren’t known about keeping fish.  We sometimes make assumptions based on what we have heard without taking the trouble to see if they make sense much less if they are true. Here is a list of questions I have and my unsolicited opinion about it.

Do I really need to change the water and if so, how much?

There are a huge variety of habitats that we need to simulate to at least the extent the fish will survive. If I think of lake habitats, the volume of fish to water is much lower in a lake than even a lightly stocked tank. It makes sense to me that, even if we can’t measure it, the aquarium water is much more polluted to a fish than a lake would be so I would want to change the water a fish that inhabits a lake much more often than a rain puddle dwelling killifish. I don’t think there is any exact answer to this question except do as much as you can.

It would be nice if someone with the facilities could measure everything in the water of a typical aquarium and compare it to some typical habitats that fish live in.

Most web sites run by killifish breeders recommend water changes of 50% per week which is what I do.

Do I really need to separate the brine shrimp from the cysts before feeding them to the fish?

Most sites recommend separating the brine shrimp from the cysts before feeding but I have yet to see any logical reason for this. It doesn’t hurt the fish to do this so I guess I should follow this advice but this is much of the work in raising brine shrimp.

Here are some links I have looked into. This also has good ideas that I want to look into about hatching brine shrimp. http://www.waynesthisandthat.com/brineshrimp.htm

I don’t have a huge amount of baby fish at one time so raising huge amounts of brine shrimp isn’t necessary. Normally I hatch out about 1/2 a gram of cysts daily using one liter bottles. I do it at room temperature without any special lighting other than ambient light from the room.  The hatch takes about 72 hours, (3 days) due to the lower temperature. Because of this I have 3 bottles hatching each a day apart.

I really don’t have a way to count the hatch other than looking at them and saying to myself, “Yep that looks good”. I have been using non iodized table salt with a buffer to get the PH up to 8. I recently switched to artificial sea salt meant for salt water aquariums and it looks like the hatch is better. But also when I wash my car I think it runs better.

Is salt that effective in treating fresh water fish diseases? and… Would fresh, (or brackish) water be effective in treating salt water fish diseases?

Is ich and velvet always present in fresh water tanks?

I have seen statements that both are always present but this makes no sense to me unless I have missed something in the explanations of their life cycles. I can see some species of velvet living longer than ick since many species of velvet have a symbiotic relationship with algae so light may keep it alive but ick doesn’t so it depends on finding a host in a few days.

My guess is there is a mild infestation always going on in our tanks that originally got introduced with new fish. At some point other factors change which favors the parasite and we assume it suddenly appeared from nowhere. What we miss is it always was there waiting to strike.

Is live food critically important for healthy fish?

The reason I ask this is I have observed that the colors of fish that just came into my tanks from the pond outside are much better than normal. Also some vitamins have a short shelf life, even when frozen. I don’t know if fish make use of the same vitamins that humans do.

 

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