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poshsouthernbird

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Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 113 total)
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  • in reply to: Happy Birthday Matt! #354398

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    And a belated happy birthday from me too :)  Hope you had a great day :)


    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    Interesting, thanks for the heads up, I’ve just got hold of a PDF of it :)

    in reply to: River Hogsmill habitat improvement project #353371

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    It does a bit doesn’t it, I’d guess it was an escapee at some point, or else someone in its ancestry was :)

    in reply to: Flight MH17 #353320

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    I saw that too, awful all round of course but this is a sad loss for aquatics.  There was an announcement on the OFI website too, http://www.ornamental-fish-int.org/ 

     

    I believe he was instrumental in Project Piaba too.

    in reply to: River Hogsmill habitat improvement project #353319

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    @poshsouthernbird said:
    The Hogsmill doesn’t get very deep but where it flows out into the Thames there are usually quite a number of very large, dark coloured fish hanging around under the bridge where people tend to feed the ducks and swans.  I’m guessing these are carp.  I did see a very large pale coloured one there a few weeks ago which looked remarkably like an escaped koi, 

    Finally saw them again today!  They were cruising about a bit further upstream in the Thames.  Not a good pic as the water was quite green, only had phone with me and couldn’t actually see anything on the screen as the sun was so bright so was a bit ‘hope for the best’!  The white one looks like it has two rows of larger scales running down its back.  They were all very chunky and at least 2-3 feet long.  There were about 5 or 6 of them, mostly darker ones but one medium sort of colour.  Escaped koi maybe?  Or perhaps a bit of a hybrid.fish-in-Thames.jpg

    in reply to: World Fish Migration Day #353170

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    I’m sure some of you have seen this already, but just in case anyone’s missed it there was an announcement from WFMD yesterday via their FB page, great to see the good work done so far is being carried on :) :

    THANK YOU!!!!

    We would like to thank all those organisations who supported & participated in WFMD2014. It was a wonderful success!! There was an amazing energy on the day & with your help we managed to reach 1000’s of people around the world. This is only the BEGINNING….

    Go check out the WORLD FISH MIGRATION DAY PLATFORM (WFMP):

    In an effort to draw on this energy and to continue communication efforts, the WFMD2014 Partnership launched the platform on 24 May in Amsterdam. The intention is to use WFMP to continue stimulating efforts to 
    *Create Awareness, 
    *Share Knowledge and 
    *Build Solid Networks on a global scale,
    around the themes of fish migration and free-flowing rivers.

    Read more @ http://www.fishmigrationplatform.com

    in reply to: World Fish Migration Day #353146

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    Happy World Fish Migration Day!  Great to see all the events going on across the world, it certainly seems to have made some fantastic progress with raising awareness :)

    Couldn’t resist sharing this pic from a good friend who caught her clowns ‘clowning around’ and getting into the ‘swim’ of things in the party spirit this morning!

    WFMD-clowns.jpg

    in reply to: River Hogsmill habitat improvement project #353145

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    Apologies for not replying sooner!  Thanks for the info on the species Pete, I haven’t been able to get down to the river for a few days but I had a trip down there this afternoon for another look.  Annoyingly the water is all murky and silty with the increased flow from the recent rain though!  Will have another try in a few days :)  You’re probably right about the fish being carp and not barbel, they were definitely loitering in the known bread spot!  I don’t recall seeing any pink pectoral fins, just big dark shapes.  Will keep an eye out for polaroids too – good tip!  I did get to see a cormorant in close up though, and lots of swallows swooping over the water for insects.  A friend is a lock-keeper nearby and tells me there are all sorts of things in the river, so I wouldn’t be at all surprised if there are koi, especially after all the flooding.

    A Spanish version of Jack’s projects would be really interesting, those sort of views are not the sort of thing the average person will see and it’s great to be able to get a look under the waterline :)

    I have to email Joe later so will mention Bolton Aquarium :)

    20140523_1307321.jpg

     

    in reply to: River Hogsmill habitat improvement project #353106

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    I’m all trained up now for this year’s round of eel monitoring, and took the opportunity to ask about other species in the river. Apparently there are barbel and stone loaches, and possibly roach. It turns out the large dark fish I mentioned in my previous post are barbel. I’m also told that chub have spawned near the area where we did the habitat improvement, so that’s a nice development. 

    I said to hi to Mr P, he was delighted with the greeting but also a little bemused as he couldn’t place who ‘Coelacanth’ might be! 

    As an aside, if anyone’s interested in UK native fish I came across a nice facebook page recently, it was posted by ARKive.  It’s a chap called Jack Perks https://www.facebook.com/UkMiniFishStudy?fref=ts

    in reply to: River Hogsmill habitat improvement project #353105

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    Handily enough I’ll be seeing Mr Pecorelli this afternoon for this year’s eel monitoring training :)  The world needs more Joe Pecorellis!

    I’m not too sure what other fish are in the Hogsmill, I’ll see if I can find out.  I’ve a recollection of someone saying that the eel trap caught a gudgeon last year, might have been a topmouth one if I remember correctly as there was a degree of concern expressed. The Hogsmill doesn’t get very deep but where it flows out into the Thames there are usually quite a number of very large, dark coloured fish hanging around under the bridge where people tend to feed the ducks and swans.  I’m guessing these are carp.  I did see a very large pale coloured one there a few weeks ago which looked remarkably like an escaped koi, but the water is quite murky so hard to be sure!  I’m told there are trout in the Hogsmill, but I’m not sure I’ve seen any.  I have seen a kingfisher flying along it (in the most urban area where both banks are deep concrete and it flows past the council offices!) and I’ve seen a cormorant come up from the Thames with a small chub in its beak.

    The various rivers trusts seem to do a lot of good work, and a lot with volunteers.  I’ve found that having got involved with one thing, other things have come of it :)

    in reply to: World Fish Migration Day #352314

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    Just seen the article posted on FB today, nice one :)

    in reply to: Goldfish #352300

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    Thanks Matt :)  One of the many things on my list of ‘stuff to do’ is a goldie caresheet along the lines of the SF ones, they’re a good ‘template’. Maybe I’ll run it by you if I ever get it done, if it’s up to scratch maybe you’d consider adding it to the SF profiles :)

    Using slotted pipes for a reverse UG makes more sense, that would ease the flow nicely while still allowing a decent level of turnover.  I was thinking of the amount of flow you get from a spray bar but of course UG systems have a bigger run of piping than that which would even out and ease flow too :)

    in reply to: Goldfish #352277

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    Thanks Rudiger :)  Sadly there are plenty of people out there who would disagree, but it’s very refreshing to come somewhere that does understand fish and can appreciate what these big guys need.  I don’t post here much, but I loiter a lot, and I know the members here are quite exceptional in their collective experience and understanding :)  Unfortunately until Joe Public realises that a foot long carp isn’t an ideal candidate for a tiny cartoon tank in a child’s bedroom we’ve still got a way to go.  As with all species, choosing the tank is about the understanding the bigger picture.

    I must admit I only recently became aware of reverse UG filters when they were featured in a PFK mag a few months ago.  It would be interesting to try it, KittyKat mentioned that they are useful for wafting ‘griff’ off the substrate and into a canister filter and this would certainly be a benefit!  With the footprint of my tanks I’d have a lovely big area for bacterial colonisation as well. I’ve got Eheim 2180 filters on mine but I have a sponge over the intake to help keep maintenance to a minimum.  It made quite a difference, they can clog up even a 2180 in quite a short space of time but the sponges have made it much easier to maintain.  The Eheims are powerful, so I use plants and bogwood to break up the flow, and strategically positioned airstones to avoid dead spots.  Maybe if I’d been aware of reverse UGs earlier I’d have given it a go :)

     

    in reply to: Goldfish #352274

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    bowl-sequence-1024.jpg

    I’ve not posted here for a while, mostly because I can’t offer info on much other than goldfish, but here’s a goldfish thread! :D  Hope no one minds me sticking my oar in on this one :)  I’ve kept a variety of ‘styles’ of goldfish for a number of years and it’s a permanent learning curve with them!

    KittyKat is right in that dimensions are important, as much as volume is.  Fancies can easily get to 30cm plus, my largest was a fantail who was 30cm long, not far off 30cm ‘tall’ and weighed about 1lb.  She was about the size of a grapefruit, you needed two hands to pick her up.  A fish this size, with the turning circle and manoeuvrability of an HGV needs a big footprint just to be able to swim about and turn around.  They need room to be able to get out of corners etc. as some aren’t very good ‘drivers’.  120cm is the minimum I’d want to see a fancy kept in, a lot of people don’t believe how big they can get, and there can be a big variation in size depending on breeding etc., but they all have the capacity to get big and I don’t agree with those who say certain varieties get bigger than others.

    They also like company, so a tank needs to be able to house more than one, preferably more than two.  IME they don’t like a crowd scene; while they’re not aggressive fish they can get a little tetchy, and competitive over food if there are too many in the tank.  So you need to consider how easily 3, 4, 5 fish each 30cm long and the size of a grapefruit would be able to swim around without crashing into each etc.  Food time can be quite a scrum so there needs to be enough room for them to shove each other around and blunder about.  And if you have males and females they can get very boisterous and need space to be able to ‘get away’ from each other as well have room for spawning behaviour which involves a lot of chasing about and bashing each other.

    They like decor as they are very much ‘doing’ fish and really benefit from lots of live plants so there needs to be room to have a good number of plants, maybe some bogwood, without compromising swimming room.  They also benefit from a good airstone so again there needs to be room for this without turning the tank into a washing machine.  They need a decent level of oxygen in the water so a big surface area is certainly preferable.

    I’ve never tried reverse UG filtration but it’s worth bearing in mind that many of the fancy varieties are prone to resting on the gravel as their over large fins and poor design make it harder for them to maintain their position in the water when sleeping and resting so they often rest on the bottom.  I’m not sure how compatible with this a reverse UG would be.  Talking of filters, they need big ones, and big ones are prone to high flow.  Smaller tanks with powerful flow cause too strong a current for floppy fins and poor swimming ability.  

    They can produce a lot of waste as they eat a lot.  Far too many are horribly underfed as the ‘thou shalt not overfeed’ mantra is adhered to religiously by those who don’t really understand their dietary requirements.  Many people don’t realise that underfeeding is often recommended by ‘unscrupulous’ types to avoid pollution in undersized tanks.  This is not acceptable.  The set up and maintenance regime should be such that the fish can be fed what they really need.  When I say they eat a lot they really do, I have nine goldfish and they get through a blister pack of frozen food in three days, and that’s only for their evening snack.  They have a heap of pellets every morning, they work their way through (literally) hundreds of pounds worth of plants, they often have spinach, algae wafers etc. and they have a big bioload.  My tanks are 600 litres and I still have to be very careful with nitrate levels rising. 

    I have to disagree that a 500 litre tank could easily take 15 or 20 adults though, at one point I had four in a 120cm long x 70cm tall by 50cm wide (330 litres) and they were making it look small, they really didn’t have much room.  I’ve now got them in 600 litre tanks (four in one, five in another) and that’s much better for them as well as helping keep the water conditions more manageable. I really wouldn’t like to triple the numbers although I’d be happy with maybe two additional fish per tank.  I’m sure some will say I’m being ridiculous but it’s much better to err on the side of caution with goldies and not set yourself up for a constant round of water changes and nitrate problems.  A big filter will keep ammonia and nitrite under control but nitrate will still rise and need dealing with.  Even if water conditions could be kept perfect I think 15-20 would be overcrowded and you’d end up with all sorts of behaviour issues and stress related problems.  I think they’d be more prone to nipping at each other and I think there’s a higher likelihood of bullying.  They can be bullies, I had a pearlscale that was an absolute cow!  She’d sneak up on the others and nip at fins before they could get away, she’d corner them and nip at them too.  I also adopted one who was accused of murdering his tank mates.  He came from a 30 litre tank that originally housed three.  He hadn’t murdered them of course, but he was a red-blooded male and he’d harassed them to exhaustion and death in a tiny tank.  He was good as gold in my tank but that was over ten times bigger!  Behavioural issues do need to be taken seriously as it can lead to stress and that in itself can be a killer.

    Goldies produce somatostatin which is a hormone that restricts growth in other goldies.  This is often misunderstood with people clinging wildly to the idea that it’s some sort of magic means of allowing them to ‘grow to the size of their tank’.  If my understanding is correct, it’s actually a competitive advantage tool.  They all want the lion’s share of food, and they all want the ladies, so if your rivals are smaller than you it gives you the edge, especially if food supplies are limited.  In a closed environment this can build up and the fish can end up restricting itself.  Whether or not this is detrimental is up for debate, but I can’t see how it would be considered ideal.

    They live a long time, fancies should really be getting to at least 10 years old, and commons at least 20.  You need to consider the fact that they’re spending a very long time in a tank, so it needs to be big enough to provide a suitably rich environment to keep them stimulated for all those years.  They’re intelligent fish (despite the ridiculous myths about them!) and need a rich environment, small tanks don’t really allow for that, IMO.

    As I say, I’m sure there are plenty who would disagree with my views on stocking levels, but (and this is very much a general statement) goldfish keeping needs its game raising.  There are far too many threads on various forums which seem determined to state that goldies don’t need big tanks etc. and it’s disheartening to see them not being taken seriously (I’m not saying anyone here is guilty of that, it’s just a general observation!).  I’ve even seen it said that they don’t need big tanks because they don’t swim very fast! They might not shoot around all the time but they get up quite a head of steam when they want to, and when they want to they should be able to.  A friend of mine summed it up quite well in reference to a large catfish he had, he said ‘he doesn’t swim much but when he does, the whole tank goes for a swim with him!’  Far too many people seem to be trying to settle for ‘what can we get by with’ rather than really thinking it through and heading towards ‘best practice’.  A constant chorus of ‘but it was fiiiiine’ really doesn’t cut any ice with me, lol!

    When all’s said and done you need to remember that they are carp.  Think of them as rugby players in evening dress, they might look fancy and snazzy and all dressed up but underneath it all they’re still big fellas that eat a lot and take up a huge amount of room :)

    Hopefully I’ve attached a picture of some of my own, the bowl is nine inches wide at the widest point and seven inches deep, it helps give an idea of how big the fish are!  The common was a fairground prize won by a friend of a friend, he’s thirteen now and certainly not one I’d have bought!  He’s probably heading up for 2lb in weight now.

    in reply to: Does anyone know anything about ‘Project Mamiraua’? #351694

    poshsouthernbird
    Participant

    Thanks for the reply :)  Will have a google for Peter Henderson and see if that turns up anymore information :)  I’m hoping it’s still going as this is the sort of thing that the fishkeeping community could give a lot of support to if only the information was more widely available :)

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 113 total)