Category Archives: Seahorses

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How To Pick Your First Seahorse: 12 Common Seahorse Species Explored

Any number of species of seahorses can be suitable for the right aquarium. Left to right: Hippocampus erectus, Hippocampus barbouri, Hippocampus reidi I’m often asked which species of seahorse aquarists should get for their first aquarium. This question may sound simple enough, but different species behave differently and have varying levels of care required. I’ve put together a list of the most commonly available species, their difficulty level and some additional notes.

Marine Fish Compatibility Concerns You Might Not Have Considered

Fish swimming overhead can make jawfish quite nervousWhen we think of compatibility problems between marine fish, what usually comes to mind is one specimen behaving outright aggressively toward another with the underlying motive of establishing territorial dominance or acquiring a meal. But sometimes incompatibility among fish has less to do with overt aggression or hungriness than, shall we say, differing “piscinalities.” Here are a few examples to illustrate my point: Is that a predator overhead? In some cases, pelagic fish can keep bottom-dwelling tankmates in a perpetual state of anxiety despite having no interest whatsoever in their doings. I’ve observed this in jawfish that share a tank with larger, open-swimming species that present no real threat to them, such as tangs and plankton-feeding triggers (e.g., Xanthichthys spp.). In this circumstance, a jawfish will tend to remain perpetually concealed in its burrow—with maybe just its eyes and mouth visible—rather than emerge and hover over it. And who can blame the jawfish? For burrowing species, danger usually comes from above, and they have to decided in a fraction of a second—based on the suspect’s body shape and movement—whether something passing overhead poses a threat or not

Opinion: Selling Baby Seahorses Is Wrong

Seahorse baby being sold far to young in a listing on eBay. It happens every so often. Someone discovers just how easily seahorses breed, but can’t raise the babies, or discover the expense and time it takes to raise seahorses and so they decide they can sell the seahorse fry and make some money doing it. Unfortunately, it’s a mistake and it ends badly for everyone but the seller. To understand why selling seahorse fry is wrong, we need to look at what causes this situation. Seahorses breed extremely easily

Whoa There, Daddy! I’m So Happy Humans Don’t Give Birth Like This

 I’m pretty terrified to have just one baby, but HUNDREDS? Take a looksie and this incredible video of a seahorse bursting hundreds of tiny little seahorse babies out of his robust pouch. This video is old news, 2009, but it’s the first time I’ve caught a glimpse of it, so I felt compelled to share in case some of you reef lovers missed it as well. For those of you who have seen it, well, maybe you want to revisit it in all of it’s baby seahorse glory. Props to seahorse dads, those guys are troopers.… More:

Fish Health Through Slime

Copperband Butterflyfish (C. rostratus) and Yellow Multibanded Pipefish (D. pessuliferus)Fish diseases—they are the meat of fish forums and the subject that takes up the most ink (or whatever causes words to form on a computer screen), so for today’s post, I am going to discuss fish immunity in relation to fish slime. Fish, like every organism, have an immune system that is specifically designed to function in the environment they live in, using as its source of energy the food that the creature is able to acquire through its intake devices, or mouth parts. The immune system is one of three parts of a fish that needs to be fueled to keep the fish operating at peak efficiency. The other two parts are growth and reproduction. If fish don’t take in enough food or get the wrong types of food, there will be less energy to fuel those systems properly and one or all will suffer.

Keeping “Difficult” Marine Fish

There are no real “difficult” fish; they survive just fine in the sea before someone comes along and collects them. They know what they need, and if we studied them in the sea, we would also know what they need, and it isn’t always about food (though most of the time, it is). There is a reason different fish come from different places—why Moorish idols come from the South Pacific and not Coney Island, why mandarins come from the Philippines and not Bayonne, New Jersey. I have spent time underwater with most of the fish I have ever kept, and I learned more from swimming a few minutes with them than from all the articles I ever read about them. Eating doesn’t equal thriving We as aquarists have a large list of fish that some consider difficult. I say the fish are not difficult but that the aquarist is either lazy or just doesn’t know what that fish is supposed to eat. Not all fish will thrive on “normal” aquarium fare. Many will eat it, but eating something doesn’t always equate with thriving

Pipefish For The Reef Aquarium: Part Two, Husbandry

Scribbled Dragonface Pipefish Corythoichthys instinalis Photo courtesy of Aaron Down Now that we’ve discussed which pipefish are appropriate for the reef aquarium in Pipefish For The Reef Aquarium: Part One, The Pipefish, we can look at acquiring and caring for your pipefish. Picking Your Pipefish When purchasing pipefish, there are a few things you can look out for to ensure you get healthy pipefish. Pipefish are susceptible to bacterial infections, so look for areas of cloudy skin, fins or eyes. Rapid breathing is frequently a sign of distress; although it can be situational i.e. fear from recent acclimation, or it can be a sign of a bigger problem such as parasites or bacterial infection. Flagtail Pipefish should be swimming above the substrate, not resting on the bottom.

Reef Threads Podcast #196

Aquarist of the Year, Rich Ross, appears to be giving Kevin Kohen a piece of his mind.MACNA 2014 is over and it’s time for our annual wrap-up show. Hear about more that we experienced in Denver. Also, don’t forget to listen to our MACNA mini casts. They’re full of what was happening in the Mile High city. Download the podcast here, or subscribe to our podcasts at iTunes. Also, follow us on Twitter at reefthreads.—Gary and Christine Gyre flow Cold reefs New controller

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