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ShrimpRetirement
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
12/2/09 update - It's been a while since I posted this thread. Just wanted to post an update of this sick looking fish since there's not much on the web about them. They are very docile and will pick food right from my fingers. They even let me hold them in my palm for a brief second or 2. Surprisingly they are not jumpers and are kept in my open top 40breeder. They've also got veracious appetites and will eat anything they can fit in their mouth. Check out this vid of the lone male dancing with a female:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hwv-22A-6a8

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Has anyone here ever kept these little guys before? I saw them at the lfs and couldn't resist since they look just like miniature barracudas :icon_surp. I've read a little about them to know they stay fairly small (7mm) and they'll breed in brackish water conditions. They're very hardy and will eat whatever they can fit in their tiny mouths. Very cool little buggers indeed. Here's a pic I just took:



Please share your experiences.
 

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We had these fish before. They are indeed very unique. You might say that they are shy but when feeding they prove to be very bold. They would eaty dry and frozen food. Prefer bloodworms. Can eaty quite big pieces despite the mouth looking very small.

They usually stay close to the surface but maybe about 30% of the time they would venture deeper.

Not aggressive. Like floating vegetation to stay around or hide among it.

As usual - iIf you saw them at a local store make sure the weak ones have gone their way. Stores do not quarantine the fish so you need to find a way to get the stronger fish (wait and hope they are not going to sell them all or take a chance) or you will be quarantining them in your tanks.

--Nikolay
 

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Children Boogie
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I've read about them. they are neat. There's a sulawesi species that's gorgeous as well.
As you can tell from the mouth, they like to eat fish too.
 

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ShrimpRetirement
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Until my CPD's or Rams start breeding, they wont have any fish to eat. I'd love to see them hunt for sure. The bottom jaw protrudes well under the top however it cannot move. The top jaw opens up similar to crocodiles/alligators. Sweet little fish! Definitely a predatory fish.
 

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Children Boogie
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An ideal tank for them is with guppies, platties, mollies, puffers etc.. You can bump up the salt level a little and everybody will be happy.
 

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ShrimpRetirement
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
An ideal tank for them is with guppies, platties, mollies, puffers etc.. You can bump up the salt level a little and everybody will be happy.
That sucks because I don't really like any of those fish except maybe the puffer (dwarf). Oh well, I'm not looking for these guys to breed. At least not yet :biggrin:.
 

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ShrimpRetirement
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
So I've only had these guys for almost a month and they already started breeding for me! It was totally unexpected because from what I remember reading, they need brackish water to breed. I guess I proved that theory wrong lol. All I did was feed all the tank inhabitants black worms and low and behold 2 of the halfbeaks paired up and kept swimming paralell to one another. Fast forward 2 weeks later and 5 babies pop out the pregnant female (may have been more). I had no idea they were in the tank and if my wife hadn't point them out, they'd probably be the main course for my Rams and Bloodfins. They look like miniture mon/dad minus the long beak. Luckily my baby Betta's are currently growing in a 5 gal tank which I've been feeding BBS, so I tossed them in the mix. They are lovin the BBS so hopefully they'll survive. Just thought I'd share :D
 

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There are many species of Halfbeaks, some are brackish, some freshwater, some even require soft and acidic water, which is the complete opposite of what livebearers prefer. Halfbeaks certainly isn't my area of expertise, but yours seems to be Dermogenys pusilla, which (as you have already found out) is perfectly happy in freshwater.
 

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Ahh, I haven't seen those in a while. My LFS used to sell them as 'needle fish' or something like that, they were in the brackish aisle...Didn't know they were livebearers. It was always neat to feed them guppy fry and ghost shrimp and watch them hunt.
 

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ShrimpRetirement
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
There are many species of Halfbeaks, some are brackish, some freshwater, some even require soft and acidic water, which is the complete opposite of what livebearers prefer. Halfbeaks certainly isn't my area of expertise, but yours seems to be Dermogenys pusilla, which (as you have already found out) is perfectly happy in freshwater.
They don't have too much info on them on Google :icon_conf sadly. Where are you getting your information, if you don't mind telling me?

Ahh, I haven't seen those in a while. My LFS used to sell them as 'needle fish' or something like that, they were in the brackish aisle...Didn't know they were livebearers. It was always neat to feed them guppy fry and ghost shrimp and watch them hunt.
Yeah, they're pretty cool. They come right up to my fingers when I feed them black worms. Not a shy fish at all. Should I toss in a couple Betta fry in there for them to hunt? I'm kidding!!! ;)
 

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Can't remember exactly as it's just information collected in my head over the years, but it probably come from Neale Monks, who literally wrote the book on brackish aquaria and is very knowledgeable with livebearers as well.
 

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they had some at my local pet store which i go to all the time since i know the owner and my friends work there. One time the fish was choking on food. I can't remember if i was a piece of Hikari food sticks or something else but it was unable to swallow the food so my friend scared it so it would spit it out.
 

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I had 4 of these guys , one of them got scared and ran into the side of the tank and broke it's jaw I think . The other 3 died of chlorine poisoning when I moved them out of their tank . I had assumed the water was clean but you know what they say about assuming
 
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