> Hello All,
> Please bombard me with advice on maintaining and spawning Elassoma zonatum.
> I just received 6 in the mail today. They arrived from Alabama. Any advice
> appreciated. I have never owned any Elassoma species before, yet I imagine
> that they all have similar requirements, so if you have not actually worked
> with this species, still do offer your experience with the other species.
Here's my experience, garnered from a lifetime of keeping
Day 1: Open box of sunfish collected somewhere on the other side
of the continent. Dump fish into community native tank. Admire
fish for several seconds before they dash into cover. Day 2:
Search in vain for sunfish. Cast flake food upon the surface of the
water hoping to entice sunfish out ot hiding. Think you see one
behind a piece of driftwood. Day 3: Continue trying to find sunfish.
Cast suspicious eye upon longear which seems to be eating
remarkably well. Day 4: Still no sunfish, and longear is not as fat
as he was. Day 5: Curse yourself for an idiot.
Attempt 2, Day -7: Set up dedicated 10-gal tank for sunfish,
complete with floating plants, Mega-Vortex Tornado Canister Filter,
and Ultra-Inversion UGF with 800GPH powerheads. Day 1: Open
box of sunfish collected by same person as last time, who asks
you to PLEASE take care of them this time. Carefull introduce fish
into tank. Look on helplessly as two get smashed into the glass
by Mega-Vortex Tornado Canister Filter. Remaining fish dive under
jet stream and are unable to escape from surface of gravel due to
the suction. Day 2: Finalize trade of filters with Cichlid guy from
your local club. Think you did a good trade for a sponge filter and a
Whisper 100 air pump. Day 3: Put frozen bloodworms in tank,
wait in anticipation for remaining 1 or 2 sunfish to eat. Day 4:
Repeat. Day 5: Switch to frozen Daphnia hoping to entice sunfish
to eat. Day 6-14: You have tried everything in and on your freezer
and they won't eat. Day 15: Write guy on the other side of the
continent for more sunfish.
Attempt 3: Find out that you can collect sunfish in your state,
because guy on the other side of the continent does not return your
phone calls or answer your letters. Day 1: Place newly captured
sunfish into dedicated 10-gallon tank with bare bottom and Java
Moss. Day 2: Worry about creeping white "rot" which starts at
sunfishes' tails. Day 3: Sunfish are almost completely white. Day
4: Sunfish all dead.
Attempt 4: Trade aquariums for ferret at local fish store. Start
preserved fish collection.
It makes me mad when I go to all the trouble of having Marta cook up about
a hundred drumsticks, and the guy at the Marineland says, "You can't throw
chicken to the dolphins. They eat fish." Sure they eat fish, if that's all
you give them. Man, wise up.
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