How to Breed Neon Tetras: Getting the Eggs (Part 1)
How to breed neon fish in an aquarium
Many people like aquarium fish, whose little body is painted with the colors of neon signs. A flock of these babies looks very picturesque in the aquarium, and it's funny to watch their synchronized movements while relaxing on the sofa. However, despite the size, neonies require attention, and we will show you how to contain them.
Feature aquarium neon
We are talking about a small family of ray-finned haracin fish. Their closest brothers are also aquarium fish - tetras. There are several varieties of neons: they are blue, green, red and black, but the subspecies name only hints at the nuances of the shades of their back.
All subspecies have characteristic stripes along the body with a luminous color - the effect of neon color, for which the owners love them so much.
Neons are fish for aquarists who like keeping flocks. Unlike its wild counterparts, which have a short life cycle, the domestic neon lives 5 years, during which it does not change its size and always remains within 4 cm. The small body is ideal for flocking in an aquarium.
How to populate neons
As a responsible aquarium owner, you should definitely be aware of the peculiarities of keeping these fish. To acquire neons, you need a flock of 6-7 pieces, since this species does not exist alone - the fish are stressed and die. You can start more, less is not recommended.
There should be a good aerator in the tank, which should be chosen with the finest dispersion. This means that the smallest air bubbles that the aerator emits are needed, which practically do not create a jet in the water. Neons stay away from streams, preferring calm places with no current.
In their natural habitat, neons choose places with dense water growth. You will need to recreate the dense vegetation in the tank using many aquarium plants with thin, dense leaves.
The instinct constantly prompts these tiny fish to hide from larger and stronger enemies, they will feel great in the thick grass, and you will be pleased to observe their bright little bodies against a green background. As for design solutions, choose plants that are reminiscent of the tropics - it will look spectacular.
It is very important thatthe greens in the aquarium were real, alive. The fact is that, unlike other species, quietly adjacent to plastic decorations, neons are sensitive to substitution. If you intend to breed this species, then provide them with a living jungle.
Water for neons is preferable at 20-24 ° C and softened, however, for adults there is no need for special treatment. You can often find advice to peat water for this species, but in fact it is very difficult to find high-quality peat that will acidify the water, and not populate it with harmful bacteria or simply paint it brown. Normal filtered water is enough for neons to live.
How to feed the neon kids?
This species is unpretentious in food, but still adhere to simple feeding principles. Such small fish need to be fed with small food, as it is easy for them to choke in large pieces, because neons do not pinch off food, but try to swallow it whole, even harming themselves.
Their second feature is overeating, so you need to do one hungry day a week without throwing food into the aquarium. Moderation in the amount of food will be the best strategy for them, and you won't have to contemplate their swollen bellies about to burst.
This type of food is varied:
- Various types of dry flakes for fry;
- Freezing of larvae (nauplii) of brine shrimp (crustaceans);
- Micro granule food for fry, such as Sera or Tetra;
- Freezing the core (mosquito larva).
You cannot feed a bloodworm that is too hard and large for small fish, unless you are too lazy to cook it - grind it. Various minced meat from fish and other sea creatures is also not suitable. Usually neonuts are not picky, but they also need to diversify their diet, and this can be done by alternating dry food companies.
Breeding secrets of neon chicks
In captivity, not all species produce offspring equally well. Pregnant neonuts are not uncommon, the whole difficulty lies in the fact that fertilized eggs stop in development and do not give birth to fry. This is due to the inappropriate aquatic environment of the aquarium, too hard and alkaline for fry, but normal for adults.
How to achieve effective reproduction? There is only one reliable and proven way - to wait for the eggs to be laid and fertilized with the milk of the males, and then to deposit the eggs in a separate tank with very soft distilled water. It is advisable to do this on the second day of laying, the main thing is to follow the process carefully and not to miss the moment.
Why do eggs die? Their soft shell does not withstand osmosis, and salt from the adult aquarium water begins to penetrate inside. If you keep several species of fish, as well as crayfish, snails and other animals, actively vacuuming the surface of the soil, then do not be surprised that neon caviar isthere is no their tasty food, and you will not wait for the offspring of fish.
You can also go the other way, by depositing adults from the aquarium in which the clutch took place for several days. Spawning occurs at 22-24 ° C and good lighting. Then, when you have separated the adults from the eggs, the tank with the latter needs to be slightly shaded. Otherwise, the eggs will not ripen and the fry will not emerge.
If you carry out reproduction in a separate tank - a spawning ground, then put a lump of fishing line treated with boiling water or a bush of an aquarium plant in it. Pregnant neon needs such a substrate to lay its eggs. Fertilization with milk occurs late at night or in the morning, so you can plant a couple for 1 day.
How to identify the female and male in order to plant them for neon spawning? Sometimes this is not easy to do. You need to be guided by the fact that usually the female is somewhat larger than the male in the abdomen, due to which her colored stripe along the back appears slightly curved, while in males it is expressively straight. Having chosen a pair, plant them in the spawning ground, after thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting the vessel.
Neon fish fry
The fry are reborn from the larvae emerging from the eggs. One neon can give about 100 eggs at a time, some of which will slow down development and will not give birth to larvae. The rest release larvae for 2-3 days, swimming motionless in the water. On the fifth day, the larva is reborn into a fry, capable of swimming and feeding on the smallest food. Careful grooming and keeping the fry separately will ensure your success.
Do not forget that the aquarium with fry no longer needs to be shaded, but illuminated with diffused light. Gradually, the fish will get stronger, and they can be populated with adult parents in a flock.
The most suitable food for fry is a mixture of ciliates and rotifers. You will have to clean the tank of feed leftovers daily to keep the water as clean and healthy as possible for the newborn fish.
A water change will help to gradually accustom them to a higher hardness so that the young do not die when they return to the common aquarium. For 10 liters of juvenile soft water daily add 1-1.5 liters of normal adult . On days 10-12, the fish are ready to reunite with the whole family.
Whether you decide to add neons to your collection or focus on this one, remember that these beautiful babies need your supervision and protection.