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August 17, 2012

Happy August, folks! I’m excited to announce I’ve been asked to continue writing newsletters for your entertainment and education.

Since I began working for the Wet Spot Tropical Fish, a year ago this month, my sister has been asking for my advice on fish and stocking more and more. I find it very hard to answer the question of how to stock an aquarium from scratch – there are so many gorgeous fish that I adore to choose from. After much musing on her most recent inquiry into an empty 20 gallon, I finally devised a cunning plan: The spotted tank.

I like to start my stocking plans with a centerpiece fish. For this particular plan, I chose a small group of Pseudomugil gertrudae “Gertrudae Rainbow”. These fish are also known by the common name “Spotted Blue Eye” and are found in northern Australia and southern Indonesia. Their body is a pleasantly bold yellow with small black dots which merge together to become three black stripes along their tail. Their fins are bright blue-white with black spots and their brilliant blue eyes add a wonderful flash of color. These fish are beautiful and small enough for nano tanks, reaching only an inch and a half at the largest. They are incredibly undemanding in terms of water chemistry, enjoying temperatures between 70°F and 82°F, a pH between 6.0 and 7.5, and between 0 and 10 degrees of hardness. Another gorgeous and similar fish is Pseudomugil iriani, “Irian Red Neon Rainbow” which features an orange-red body and a brilliant blue stripe down its dorsal edge.

Pseudomugil gertrudae

My next choice was a complimentary schooling fish to add a little more motion to the aquarium. After much perusing, I decided upon Boraras naevus “Strawberry Rasbora”. This little fish is a pleasing red, with the brightest red coloration surrounding the black spots near its pectoral, anal, and caudal fins. The Strawberry Rasbora tops out at a mere three-quarters of an inch, thrives in water between 75°F and 82°F, and prefers slightly acidic water (6.0-7.0 pH) at a low hardness (0-10 degrees).

Boraras naevus

I’m quite the fan of layered tanks with different species to occupy each level of the aquarium. Unfortunately, spotted surface fish are a little harder to find than those dwelling in the middle levels. I did consider Hemirhamphodon tengah “Borneo Red-Line Gold Spot Halfbeak” (what a mouthful!) but finally decided on the top-level schooling fish Carnegiella strigata “Marble Hatchet Fish”. This popular fish is a member of the only family of fish known to use powered flight – achieved by beating its pectoral fins like a bird’s wings. The hatchet fish’s incredibly strong pectoral muscles account for approximately 25% of its body weight, allowing a fish as small as the Marble Hatchet Fish (topping out at only an inch and a half) to fly for several yards before reentering the water. These fish prefer a temperature of 75°F to 82°F, a pH of between 5.0 and 7.0, and a minimal hardness of between 0 and 10 degrees. A great alternative to these common hatchets would be the less often seen Carnegiella marthae “Marthae Hatchet Fish”.

Carnegiella strigata

Finally, I chose a dwarf Corydoras to occupy the bottom of the tank – Corydoras habrosus. This tiny Corydoras, reaching a maximum size of less than an inch and a half, is known by many common names – “Dainty Cory”, “Salt and Pepper Cory”, and “Venezuelan Pygmy Cory”. As with most Corydoras, this species is a bottom-feeding scavenger, requiring a soft and sandy substrate, and care should be taken to ensure that enough food reaches the bottom of the aquarium to keep them well fed. It should be noted that if these fish are only allowed leftover food from the feeding of the tank’s other occupants, it will probably not thrive.   These Corydoras should be kept in a group of six or more at a temperature of 72°F to 79°F, a pH between 6.2 and 7.2, and a similar hardness as the other fish considered – 2 to 12 degrees is ideal.

Corydoras habrosus

With all these wonderful fish, how should the aquarium be aquascaped? With the exception of the Marble Hatchet, all of these fish prefer low currents – the Marble Hatchet enjoys a slightly higher current, but will do fine in a slower setting. All these species prefer floating and surface plants to diffuse light and give them a sense of safety. Both the Gertrudae Rainbow and Strawberry Rasbora like dense planting; to allow the Corydoras and Hatchet Fish room to school and swim, the majority of dense planting should be along the sides and back of the aquarium with open near-surface space as well as open sand substrate for the habrosus.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed reading about my theoretical spotted aquarium as much as I enjoyed planning it and sharing it with you!

Jessica Supalla
The Wet Spot Tropical Fish

August 10, 2012

As many of you know, MonsterFishKeepers.com is being targeted by Monster Energy Drinks for having similar logos and for the use of the word “Monster”. So, with all this talk of “Monster” fish, I was inspired to write about some of the coolest “Monster” fish found in Africa, the genus known as Tetraodon. More commonly known as the freshwater puffers…

Remarkably, puffers are one of the few species that can blink, and can even close their eyes. This is just one of many adaptations that set them apart from the rest of the fish kingdom. Obviously, puffers get their name by having the ability to expand their body 2-3 times its normal size by ingesting water or air. This allows the animals to be to large to be eaten and even scare away its potential predator with its enlarged size. They also possess a beak-like jaw structure that is formed by two large teeth on both the upper and lower jaw. This allows the fish to eat their favorite foods, shelled invertebrates otherwise known as snails.

Setting up a puffer tank does not require much as far as decorations are concerned, but you will eventually need a large aquarium even if starting off with a smaller animal. Remember, some of them can grow to “Monster” size. Puffers generally are solitarily animals that like to bury themselves in the substrate, so sand is highly recommended as other substrates may damage their soft bodies. I would use smooth pieces of root-wood or large stones. Some puffers do like to hide under structures. If you are planning on building your pet a home make sure you securely place the decorations in the tank. It may be a good idea to silicone any decorations to where you want them to ensure the animal does not harm itself.

Our very own store mascot, Francis, is proof that Tetraodon lineatus “Nile/Fahaka Puffer” can turn into a real pet, rather than just some other aquarium “decoration”. She has repeatedly shown to interact with not only the employees at the store, but several “regular” customers. Nile Puffers are found throughout the lakes and rivers of northern Africa and can reach almost 18” in length in nature. Most of the water parameters are between 6.5-7.5 pH and the temps in the high 70’s.

Tetraodon lineatus

Francis has grown to nearly 15” in the last 6 or so years we’ve had her. She loves her diet of frozen brine shrimp, krill, and the occasional snail to keep her beak well-trimmed. Whenever it’s time to feed, she eagerly awaits for you to place the food her tank by meeting you at the surface!

Tetraodon lineatus "Francis"

Just like the Nile Puffer, Tetraodon mbu “Giant Puffer” will become accustomed to its owner. The Giant Puffer can be found in the rivers and lakes (including Lake Tanganyika) throughout the Congo, Tanzania, Zambia, Burundi, and the Cameroon. The water is generally hard, 7.0-8.0 pH and still fairly warm 75-79°. This fish can grow to nearly 30” in nature. Though they rarely exceed 24”, you will want to make sure you are going to be able to provide an aquarium large enough for the animal as it grows over the years. I would suggest starting with the largest aquarium possible, and moving the animal as little as possible as this is best for the health and wellbeing of a true “Monster” fish.

Tetraodon mbu

Tetraodon mbu

I know the last featured fish doesn’t grow to “Monster” size, but who can’t help but love Tetraodon miurus “Red/Brown Congo Puffer”. This fish is “Monster” in appearance, after all. It also likes to bury itself in the substrate. And with its upward pointed mouth and eyes almost on top of its head, it’s perfectly designed to wait for a freshwater prawn to drift by before it leaps out of the substrate to ambush the un-expecting prey. Where else can you find the Red/Brown Congo Puffer? Why the large rivers of both the Republic of Congo and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Here these fish grow to around 6” in length, and can be found changing their color to blend in with their surroundings.

Tetraodon miurus

As I’ve already mentioned once before, these puffers of the Tetraodon family are generally solitarily animals that should be housed alone. They are very aggressive with one another, and keeping them together usually ends with one animal severely hurt, or even dead. They can also live for a very long time. You’ll want to really think about these things before taking on the “Monster” task of housing one of nature’s unique creatures.

As always, I hope you found this informative, as well as fun. If you have any further questions about puffers, or any of the fish that can be found on our list this week, please feel free to contact me.

See you folks back here next week!

Anthony Perry
Sales Manager

July 20, 2012

 Summer has arrived and it’s been quite sunny and warm here in Portland. It is much too hot for my tastes, but I suppose I’m more of a temperate fish than a tropical one. I’ve been considering what to write about in my newsletter and found inspiration in my love of air conditioning – subtropical aquaria.

Setting up a cool water aquarium isn’t much different from a tropical setup. The temperature should ideally be kept between 68-74° Fahrenheit year round. The temperature can be allowed to decrease slightly during winter depending upon the tolerance of your livestock, but a wide-range adjustable heater is necessary if the location of your aquarium often drops below 65°. It is best to keep your subtropical aquarium in a cool part of the house to avoid the necessity of water cooling methods during the summer. The vast majority of our coolwater fish occur in mountain streams and rivers in the wild; they enjoy high currents and oxygenation and benefit from overfiltration, powerheads, airstones, or any combination thereof.

A great number of hobbyists recognize the Danio genus as a wonderful source of cool water fish. I’m quite fond of Brachydanio cf. keeri “Hikari Yellow Danio”, the males of which sport an iridescent yellow-green sheen, as well as Danio sp. "Kyathit" “Burmese Kyathit Danio” with its red fins and blue and yellow mottled stripes. There are numerous other lovely Danios to choose from as well, but one of my personal favorites is Danio pathirana “Pathiran’s Danio”. These are beautiful 3” insectivorous fish, slightly more full-bodied than other Danios with a center line cut vertically by brilliant blue and gold bands. They are somewhat more sedentary and enjoy slightly warmer water than many other Danios, though this is only by a few degrees. Their ideal temperature range is 69-78° F with a preference for soft, acidic water with a decent current. These fish originate in the Nilwala River watershed and are considered endangered in the wild due to cultivation of the land around the watershed.

Danio pathirana

Many species of Corydoras are well suited to subtropical aquaria. C. paleatus “Salt and Pepper Cory” and C. duplicareus “Duplicate Cory” are both happy in a temperature range of 68-74° F. However, I’ve currently been taken by another cool water species hailing from Rio Negro and Rio Uaupes in Brazil: Corydoras adolfoi, “Adolfo’s Cory”. Adolfo’s Cory looks very similar to the Duplicate Cory, featuring the same black caudal edge stripe and facial mask as well as a brilliant orange head cap just before the caudal fin; the greatest difference between the two is that Adolfo’s Cory has a thinner black stripe along its caudal edge than the Duplicate Cory. This species grows to a length of 2.4”, enjoys 68-78°F soft acidic water between pH 5.6 and pH 7.0, and has a preference for blackwater conditions, though the latter is not necessary. Adolfo’s Cory enjoys dense planting around the edges of its aquarium home and soft, sandy substrate that will not damage their delicate barbels which are primarily used to scavenge for sunken food particles.

Corydoras adolfoi

There are many species of ‘Hillstream’ or ‘Butterfly’ loaches perfectly suited to subtropical aquaria with high water flow and oxygenation. These fish have very similar requirements to each other and the vast majority of them prefer water temperatures from 68-75°F. Additionally, the Panda Loach, Protomyzon pachychilus, also enjoys a subtropical habitat. I’ve chosen to focus on Sewellia cf. breventralis “Porcupine Hillstream Loach”,one of our newest acquisitions from the Hillstream loach group. These particular fish are not yet fully described in the hobby, but are believed to originate in the Hue province of Vietnam in fast-flowing softwater tributaries and headwaters. The Porcupine Hillstream Loach sports a mottled, snakeskin-like pattern, reaches 2.4” and enjoys a diet of algae and biofilm scraped from smooth river rocks, making them a perfect algae eater for the subtropical aquarium.

Another interesting group of fish entirely suited to cool water aquariums is the Rhinogobius genus of gobies, preferring 68-78°F water. I’ve regularly seen R. duospilus “Flame Cheek Goby”, R. leavelli “Yellow Fin Goby”, R. sp. “Flower Goby”, and R. zhoui “Scarlet Goby” amongst our stock. The Scarlet Goby is a rare and stunningly colorful specimen: Its centerline is vertically transversed by several scarlet-red stripes and its red fins are bordered with brilliant blue-white. This fish is endemic to the highest streams of Lianhua Mountain, China. High currents and clean water are typical of its environment, as well as submerged rock substrates. Scarlet Gobies are active fish with large personalities – they are non-aggressively territorial (this is unlikely to lead to injury) and make quite a show flaring to intimidate their fellow gobies away from their home turf.

Rhinogobius zhoui

Last week, Anthony wrote about the beautiful Tanichthys albonubes "White Cloud Mountain Minnow" and its relatives and color morphs. This genus is definitely suitable for a subtropical aquarium, as well as some barbs such as Puntius semifasciolatus “Gold Barb”, and a few tetras, including the wonderful green and red Aphyocharax rathbuni “Green Fire Tetra.”   Unfortunately, I don’t have any more space to talk about these beautiful schooling fish.

Thank you for reading and I hope you found my newsletter interesting and informative. I’ve enjoyed helping you all with your questions and orders over the past week. Anthony will be back on Monday!

Jessica Supalla

August 03, 2012

I’ve always had a thing for the Loricariids, the L-number cats of South America. Most notably, I’ve been very fond of the genus Hypancistrus. They can be highly attractive, like the ever so popular Hypancistrus zebra “Zebra Pleco” or L46 with its bold black and white stripes. They can also be as elegant as H. sp. “Yellow King Tiger Pleco”, L333, with its “scribbled” lines that engulf the body.

Unfortunately, a great deal of these and other Loricariid types were unavailable for exportation from the country of Brazil. It’s my understanding that the reason for this was that the country put a ban on any species that was not scientifically identified. This perhaps came when scientists and the local Fish and Game experts realized that exporters were over fishing the Zebra Pleco and in order to conserve their natural fish populations, the government issued a ban on exportation of any species that was not “known” to science.

Recently, some 700+ species were lifted from this ban and many of the fish we desired to own have started to come back into the states. The Wet Spot is, of course, a leader in the hobby when it comes to those hard to find or unusual items. No, we may not have been the first right away to offer you some of these fish. We are a practical store, and we know the cost on some of this stuff would come down in a matter of time. Let me say that it’s been very well worth the wait. This week, I am proud to offer two Hypancistrus species that I know everyone can appreciate as a hobbyist.

The first, I would love to talk about is Hypancistrus sp. “Scribble Pleco” L66. Native to the lower Rio Xingú and the Rio Tocantins in the Pará state of Brazil this pleco can grow to nearly 5” in length - making it one of the larger members of the genus. Scribble Plecos prefer to be kept in temperatures between 78-84°. The pH range is rather adaptable between the ranges of 5.8-7.0. The common name comes from the white and black lines that are “broken” throughout the entirety of the body.

Hypancistrus sp. "Scribble/King Tiger Pleco" L066

 

These markings are very similar to Hypancistrus sp. “Queen Arabesque Pleco” L260 that is found throughout the Rio Tapajós, also in the Pará state of Brazil. The difference between the two is that the lines found on the Queen Arabesque are much finer, and the fish is overall a lot smaller – growing up to about 3.5”. The Queen Arabesque will also do better with cooler water temperatures (74-82°) unlike the Scribble Pleco. The Queen Arabesque Pleco prefers to be kept in stream-like environments where the oxygen level is rich, and the current is rather swift. Because of this setup the pH is often 6.4-7.6.

Hypancistrus sp. "Queen Arabesque" L260

Hypancistrus are a little different when it comes to their diet. Unlike the common misconception that all plecos are algae eaters, these little fish prefer a little meat. In the wild, they can be found grazing on invertebrates, insects, and other crustaceans found on the river bottom. Because of this predatory diet, I recommend a variety of frozen bloodworms, catfish pellets, and some sort of spirulina-based product. Pleco chips or fresh zucchini are other great choices to keep the greens up.

All Hypancistrus types are cave spawners and are fairly easy to breed as long you can provide clean, oxygen-rich water that is on the warm side. Most females will lay somewhere between 30-40 eggs and the male will take care of the young. The best way to breed these peaceful fish is to build a riverbed styled aquarium. This can be done by stacking several flat stones on top of one another and by providing ample filtration. Plants are not necessary but if you add them the plecos will not cause harm to them.

The genus Hypancistrus is a fun and relatively easy species to work with. They are great for the community tank as they do not get large, and most of them are non-territorial.

Be sure to check the products link below, or visit www.wetspottropicalfish.com for these and other species of Loricariids we are proud to offer. As always I’ll be here to answer any questions you may have.

I’ll see you all back here next week!

Anthony Perry
Sales Manager

July 13, 2012

 

In 1932, a Chinese scoutmaster named Tan Kam Fei brought a local fishery a minnow from White Cloud Mountain and it would become one of the most popular aquarium pets in the trade. This story is well known among hobbyists, and the genus, Tanichthys, was erected in Tan’s honor. Tanichthys albonubes “White Cloud Mountain Minnow” would become the sole member of the family until 2001 when two more species were described out of Vietnam. Sadly, this fish would not be seen in nature for over 25 years, when an isolated population far away from the mountain was finally seen on the Hainan Island in China.

Tanichthys albonubes "Long Fin"

My favorite thing I found out about the White Cloud Mountain Minnow was in the meaning of its very name. The fish was indeed found and named after Tan. Ichthys is, of course, Greek for “fish”. So, when you put these two together they mean “Tan’s fish”. Now here’s the best part of this. Albo translates from the Greek into “white” and nubes means cloud. You can put that all together and get the minnow from white cloud!

The fish itself is easily recognizable by the white stripe along the body as well as a darker one that runs parallel under the other. The dorsal fin is red that’s etched with a white border. With its small size, the 1.5” fish will attract your eye to the red caudal (tail) fin. There are also “gold” and “long fin” forms available in the hobby thanks to line breeding. It’s my experience that massive breeding has led to deformities due to inbreeding. It’s been our goal here in the shop to offer only the highest quality of fish, and we do our best to bring in these fish from good sources.

More recently being imported from the Ben Hai River drainage, Tanichthys micagemmae “Vietnam White Cloud” has quickly started to make a name for itself in the hobby. The two species may seem to be extremely similar at first glance, but after closer examination you’ll notice that the red color is reversed in T. micagammae. The red that can be found on the dorsal fin of T. albonubes is now in the anal fin of T. micagammae. The adult size of T. micagammae is only about 1.2”, as well.

Tanichthys micagemmae

What I found to be extremely interesting is that T. micagammae may actually be the parent species of T. albonubes. This means that on the evolutionary chain the Vietnam fish is actually older than the Chinese fish! The genus Tanichthys is also unlikely to be a member of either the Danionine or Rasborine families; Studies have shown more similarities with Acheilognathinae, which we all know as the “Bitterlings”! Tanichthys is in fact more closely related to the Tinca tinca “Common Tench” than to any danio or rasbora.

Tanichthys micagemmae

The last species,T. thacbaensis, has never been imported into the hobby, and has only been written about in the Vietnam book, Native Freshwater Fish Species. The book is completely written in Vietnamese and is no longer in print. There weren’t photos published so it’s still inconclusive if this fish even exists.

White Clouds in nature are micropredators and feed on small insects. They can even tolerate temperatures as low as 41°. Because of this chilling ability people often keep them in outdoor ponds. Now they may be able to handle this, but by no means should the fish be exposed to this for long periods of time. If you are keeping them outside during winter months, you should try to heat the pond somehow and/or remove any ice that may form on the surface. They are best suited for tanks kept between 60-72°F.

Once again another “common” fish intrigued me enough to write an article about them, and once again this puts another week behind us. As you’re reading this I’ve already made my way to the American Cichlid Association Convention 2012 in Indianapolis. I know that I’m having a great time with old friends, and making new ones. I’ll be back the week of the 23rd to continue fulfilling your orders. Until then Jessica is here to help you.

See you guys here in 10 days!

Anthony Perry
Sales Manager

July 26, 2012

A few years ago I was fortunate enough to attend the 2009 American Cichlid Association Convention in Cincinnati, Ohio. My time there was rather brief, and I didn’t get to really see much of the city outside of visiting the Newport Aquarium. The aquarium houses one of my very few favorite saltwater animals. Bowmouth Guitarfish (Rhina ancylostoma) better known as the Shark Ray. If you have never been to the Newport Aquarium then I would highly recommend it if you ever make it to the state of Ohio. These sea animals alone made the trip worth it.

Flashing forward to the second week of this month I once again had the honor of attending this year’s 2012 convention in Indianapolis. I arrived at the hotel a little after noon on Thursday the 12th and immediately took a nap. Most of the group had taken the trip to Rusty Wessell’s fish house located in Ohio which left me alone for the better part of the day. After some much needed rest from my red eye flight I made my rounds throughout the hotel trying my best to stay out of the way of the fish that was coming in from vendors all over the east coast.

The next day I attended many of the talks, including one of the best talks I have ever seen that was presented by Heinz H. Büscher on invertebrates of Lake Tanganyika. Unlike other speakers I have seen before he had included a high-definition video along with his talk that took you on a journey under the water on snails, shrimps, and the crabs that call the lake home. The macro video footage was so phenomenal that you could see a shrimp cleaning its eye socket with grains of sand! Sadly, I had overslept and missed his other talk on other Tanganyika species.

By Saturday the event was in full swing with the silent B.I.T.C.H (Babes In The Cichlid Hobby) auction going. The “Babes” auction off artwork, clothing, fish food, and other items in support of the Guy Jordan Research fund as well as raising money for next year’s event. Guy Jordan was the founding member of ACA and there is a fund in his memory for the research and study of cichlids in their natural habitat.

There were fish being sold that hobbyists and other venders provided in the “tank rental” room where you could buy a variety of fish. The judges were making their last minute decisions on what fish would bring home the “best in show” trophy. Our store donated 3 boxes of fish to the event that I had personally bagged and shipped the day before I had left for the ACA auction that happens on Sunday morning. The event ended on Saturday evening with a large banquet dinner, award ceremony for the fish show, and the Kingfish auction.

To me the conventions are not just about the cichlids we oh so love, but the friends and new bonds you make held at each one. These events are like a family gathering and everyone who attends is always welcomed. If you have never attended an ACA convention, I strongly suggest getting to Denver for next years!

I would also like to ask for your help in another matter. The website owner and a very dear friend of mine, from MonsterFishKeepers.com are being sold by Monster Energy Drinks for the use of the word “monster” and for similar logos. All of us here at The Wet Spot know just how important it is for hobbyists to support each other. I would like to ask that you visit the link below and sign the petition against Monster Energy Drinks. You don’t have to be a “monster” fish owner to know that this website is more than just that of fish of substantial size. Thank you to all of you who already have and to those who choose to support our cause.

Until next week!

Anthony Perry
Sales Manager

July 05, 2012

The genus Oreichthys, commonly known as “Drape Fins” or “Headstanders”, is a small family within the Cyprinids and is characterized by a tall body and a short stout nose, and unlike most other barbs the barbells are absent. Of course, you can’t forget that big sail of a dorsal fin on the boys! They are a very peaceful fish that is typically unsuited for the community tank because of their shy and bashful behavior. It is likely that others of the genus will soon be described because there are at least three more in Myanmar, four in India, and possibly others in Thailand and Laos that are already being imported under the wrong fish names. Today, I wanted to go over the three species we currently have and how to properly house them.

Though they are found in large numbers in the slow moving creeks of India, Myanmar, and Thailand, they are a shoaling species that follows a pecking order. Because of their small size they are often mislabeled as a fish that does not need much room in an aquarium. This is very untrue as males can often be observed sparring with one another and can bully each other until the weaker fish becomes withdrawn and goes into hiding. It’s because of this they should be kept in schools of 10 or more and in a tank measuring at least 24” long by 12” wide.

The “Drape-Fin” complex is best kept in planted aquaria with wood structures placed in each corner. They will appreciate floating plants to help subdue some of the bright light. As far as water conditions go, they will do best in a pH of 6.5-7.5. The temperature will be fine in the mid 70’s. Their ideal diet is daily meals of frozen Daphnia and baby brine. They can be rather timid when it comes to feeding. So, if you’re having troubles try live foods like Artemia.

The first of the group, Oreichthys cosuatis “Hi Fin Headstander Barb”, was first described by Hamilton in 1822. The original description was from the Kosi River in the Ganges tributary of Nepal, India, and Bangladesh. Recently, in 2009, Schäfer suggested it may only occur in Uttar Pradesh in West Bengal, India, with the other locations being separate species all together. Males of the Hi Fin Headstander grow to be about 1 ¾” while the females will stay slightly smaller.

Oreichthys cosuatis

In 2009, Schäfer would describe Oreichthys crenuchoides “Drape Fin Barb” from the Brahmaputra River in West Bangel. The Drape Fin Barb would also be collected from the Jorai River, Ghoti Ganga River and from the Buxa Tiger Reserve in India. The Drape Fin Barb is sometimes sold in the hobby as O. cosuatis, but clearly with its taller dorsal fin that “drapes” over the slightly taller body, and lacking the darken edging on the scales, it is clearly not the same fish. The Drape Fin Barb also has a distinguished black spot right before the tail.

 Oreichthys crenuchoides

Within the last year or two, another Barb was again imported under the name O. cosuatis, this time under a variant known as the “red” form. Today, Oreichthys sp. “Myanmar Redfin” is still un-described, but it’s likely to originate from the Irrawaddy River in northern Myanmar.

Oreichthys sp. "Myanmar Redfin"

My research shows a good possibility it comes from a stream known as Hpa Lap, which is likely just as Danio kyathit “Kyathit Danio” which also comes from this location. It’s more than likely the collectors are gathering these two at the same time. The Oreichthys sp. “Myanmar Redfin” are a silver color with black edging on the scales when young, but the males turn a beautiful rustic orange/red when fully grown around 1.5”.

Oreichthys sp. "Myanmar Redfin"

My recommendations for tank mates include most of the Badis family including the beloved Dario Dario “Scarlet Badis”. I would avoid larger fish such as Rainbows as their size may intimidate the bashful barbs into hiding all of the time. It would be a good idea to have a school of slower moving danios like Danio choprae “Glowlight Danio” or D. kyathit to help bring them out and into the open. With a little time and patience these little Barbs will be flashing off their sails for you and the other tank mates in no time.

I want to remind you all that I will be beginning my vacation on July 12th. Jess will be answering your calls, emails, and continuing to get your orders out while I am away. If you have any questions you may contact any of us here at the shop.

Until next week!

Anthony Perry
Sales Manager