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- - Raising livebearers to their full size seems to be proving hard. (http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/fish-breeding/raising-livebearers-their-full-size-seems-50650/)
Raising livebearers to their full size seems to be proving hard.
I have a problem with raising livebearers. Whenever my platies/swords have fry, I catch the majority of them and always purposely leave a few in the tank to fend on their own. I always notice the ones that I leave in the open with the adult fish grow faster and larger than the ones I raise in the breeding net.
I have a 2.5 inch long male that grew up in the tank who is only 2 months old, while I have a half-inch fry which was raised in the breeding trap who is nearly 12 months old. Same goes for ALL fry I catch and raise in the net.
What am I doing wrong? My month old batch is already doing the same. The fry I left out in the tank are already big enough to eat from the surface without hiding from the adults while the ones in the net are quite small.
I feed the netted fish 4 to 8 times a day and I give a good mix of food. I use hardboiled egg yolk, ground up betta food, soft spirulina pellets (their staple), ground up hikari veggie flakes, and a few others. The fish in the net get much more attention and variety than the adults do. Most of my net-raised fry only grow to a very max of 1.5 inches. I have a giant of a female who is nearly 4 inches long as well, but it was not raised in the net. My friend said it could be due to a lack of oxygen flow for the fry.
I know nothing about this as I am a first time Platy owner as of about 3 1/2 weeks ago. That said, reading your post makes me question, why you don't just allow all the fry in the tank with the adults as they are doing better that way anyhow and you won't have to work so hard to do it? Just curious, not judging.
I net them because most of what I leave in the tank gets eaten. I guess it's a "strongest will survive" thing going on, because the ones that make it to adulthood are the healthiest and most colourful.
I also try to make a profit from them. I never need to buy fish food anymore; if I need any food, I just bring in 5 or 6 fry to my LFS and I get it for free. It's been nearly a year since I bought fish supplies :)
I sometimes go out and buy 2-3 more females from a different LFS (to get different genes than the one I trade with). That being said, someone I know gave me 15 of their own fry a few months ago (which grew just fine). I have good diversity. Some of my fry are even hybridized with swordtails (they grew large).
I think it's probably environmetal.
Are there different lighting levels? Light plays an important part in fry development.
What is the feeding regime like? It's possible the fish in the tank are able to browse constantly as livebearers generally do.
I feed them 4 to 8 times throughout the day between 8 AM and 12 AM. I never feed them less than 4 times. Since I woke up (it's 1:20 here right now) I've already fed them thrice; I keep a close eye on them.
It is for this reason that I thought it might be fun to give it a try. Not sure how it will go if it happens at all as I only have the one tank and not intending to get big into breeding but it would be nice to get a bit of store credit for a change instead of always spending more.
I used to put my guppy fry in a breeder box. Then I started just letting them stay in the main tank. I found that the ones left in the main tank grew faster, bigger and stronger than the ones in the breeder box. I believe it's because they get stronger from having more swimming room. They get more "exercise" if you get my drift. If you have plenty of plants and rocks most of the fry can evade the adults. They will get thinned out but that's a good thing because you don't want your tank overrun with too many fish.
My fish are now at a size where I think it should be safe to let them loose. I might try that, I was thinking that might be the case too.
Seems like you had the same results as I did.
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