RE: NANFA-- Slow-growing bowfin

Hoover, Jan J ERDC-EL-MS (
Fri, 7 Mar 2003 21:22:49 -0600

A follow-up note on our tank-raised bowfin, the growth rates of which were
reported in the Spring 2002 American Currents:

Until an hour ago this evening, 5 remained in a 100-gal tank where I work.
Three were removed and will be donated tomorrow morning to the public
aquarium at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science. Their length ranges
from 208-226 mm. Rate of growth during the past 15 months (0.13 mm/day) was
approximately half that during their first 200 days in captivity (0.3
mm/day). This may represent a natural slowdown in growth but I suspect
that the tank was too small and crowded. The fish, however, are pretty
robust (K=0.9-1.1).

One interesting note - a year after getting the fish, and several months
after establishing them in their present tank with undergravel filtration,
the pH crashed. Typical ranges initially were 6.9-7.5; they bottomed out at
3.02! The pH of grapefruit juice is around 3.2 and vinegar 3.0. Three fish
died proving that water quality CAN kill a bowfin. The rest recovered
immediately following a water change proving that they are amazingly
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