NANFA-L-- minnow breeding

Peter Unmack (peter.lists at)
Fri, 14 Apr 2006 16:17:03 -0500 (CDT)

G'day folks

I've been thinking a bit lately about good species to suggest to beginners
trying to keep and breed natives. For the moment I only want to consider
minnows (Cyprinidae) to keep the discussion more manageable. A bit later
I think I'll bring up the question in other groups.

My experience with breeding minnows is pretty limited. But the two
easiest species that I know to spawn are red shiner (Cyprinella lutrensis)
and fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas). I never spawned bullhead minnow
(Pimephales vigilax), but they should be pretty easy too.

In addition to being relatively easy to spawn, each of those species are
pretty tolerant of a wide range of conditions, are generally pretty hard
to kill and they are mostly widespread, thus a little easier to get.
They are also reasonably attractive fish, although not as brightly colored
as some species. And they also tend to spawn-in-a reasonably small size
and they don't get especially large. They also don't need any tricky cool
down period, and as long as their lights are on ~14 hours a day they
should be in spawning mode with sufficient temperatures. And I think
their fry can all be started on baby brine shrimp too. All of these
traits make them relatively good beginner species to try and breed.

Some my question for everyone is what do you think are the easiest minnows
to spawn besides those I just mentioned? You don't have to have bred them
per se, thus it can be based on your impression of what is easy to breed.
I haven't done any reading or literature searches on any of this, so feel
free to point out obvious stuff. Any thoughts and ideas are welcome (even
if they don't meet all of my criteria above).

Peter Unmack
Provo River, Utah
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