Re: NANFA-- Hogsucker husbandry secret revealed?

Todd Crail (
Mon, 28 Jun 2004 23:45:05 -0400

From: "Hoover, Jan J ERDC-EL-MS" <>
> Although they are selective predators, cardinal shiners are broadly
> omnivorous, as are hogsuckers, and it would not surpirse me that the
> sand-sifting of both species is a way of obtaining specific high quality
> prey (e.g., diatoms).

But diatoms are dirty and need filtered by expensive equipment! :)

Should this be the case, it will be interesting if the 48"x12"x1/2" of
Diat-oh-magic (tm) they currently have available is enough. I will be
moving them into a 100 gallon that will use metal halide lighting, which I
hope to encourage even more photo-utilizing microorganism growth deeper in
the substrate, to act as a better refugia.

What throws me in this scenario is that they only seem to do this when they
have other food already going down the pipe. I'd love to get both papers,
if you wouldn't mind Jan. Let me know of any costs incurred :)

I think Wally has a good suggestion as well, although I think that would
just be a side effect/benefit/selection and not a root cause for swallowing
the sand. I think it really is geared toward either nutrition or digestion,
which would have started as a side effect/benefit/selection too, so I'll
just shut up on that :) However.... I will say on this "ballast" note...

After having snorkelled in a mountain stream finally... I bumped the current
waaaaaaaaaay up in-in-least the 30 long. I have become incredibly enamoured
(was that obsessed?) with "the physics of the biology".

The hogsucker is a great example, as the head acts like a forward facing
keel . They arch their backs and use their tail to keep that head down,
which allows them to effortlessly move about where they want in the current.

I highly suggest adding a bank of powerheads (if they're laying around) if
only just to watch how different your fish will behave. It's really amazing
to watch, and see how niches are created in the same small space between
direct current and eddy, and the suprises on who occupies which! My new
riffle tank mantra is... "If there ain't sand blowin' around... It ain't a
riffle tank." :)

What we need to do is figure out how to do this (velocity AND volume), but
minimizing the number of devices (thereby minimizing the heat). I think it
looks something like this:

But the only "modification plans" that I've seen are pretty big scale. I
plan to use something like this on the 150. Now to figure it out for little
tanks. This particular example is a little giant pond pump with a model
boat propellor. And man does it move water!

Liquid, do you have the plan online someplace? I think this is something
people can really use 'round these parts.

Okay. Enough excitement for today. Time to use those pillows behind the
pump! :)

It's never too late to have a happy childhood.
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