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Maintenance and care of astronotus, compatibility with other types of fish

Astronotus is one of the most popular aquarium dwellers. This bright and large fish always attracts attention. She managed to win the love of aquarists with her ingenuity, unusual temper and other abnormal fish skills.

A smart beauty is unpretentious in content, but for normal development she needs to create certain conditions.

Astronotus – unpretentious in the content of the fish with a peaceful nature.

The large and beautiful astronotus fish differs from many other representatives not only in appearance, but also in character. Unusual and intelligent, she recognizes her master, lets herself be stroked and even gives in to training.

For this, they began to call her the “sea dog”.

Astronotuses belong to the Cichlow family, and are distinguished by rather large sizes. In the natural environment, the length of their body reaches 35−40 cm, and in captivity it can grow up to 22 cm. They have a large head with well-defined frontal part, expressive eyes and large lips.

A strong body has an oval shape, the color of which in a natural pond is dark gray with orange spots on the back and gills. In the area of ​​the caudal fin, there is a black spot with characteristic yellow stripes.

For this feature in appearance it is called ophthalmic.

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All aquarium astronotus fish tend to change color under the influence of stress or due to the attack of other species of fish. In aquarium conditions, red, marble, tiger with stripes of orange are most often found.

Less common are blue, voile and albino – completely white individuals.

Homeland of these fish is considered to be South America. Under natural conditions, they inhabit rivers, lakes and other natural bodies of water.

Their life expectancy is more than 10 years.

Since astronotuses are large in size, they need a spacious container of about 400 liters. This is also due to the rapid growth of the fish.

Maintaining cleanliness in a reservoir with such a view is quite difficult, so it is better to immediately buy an external biofilter that can effectively clean water from ammonia and other substances.

For astronotus need a spacious aquarium of 400 liters.

It is necessary to pay attention to the sufficient amount of oxygen in the aquarium, if it is inhabited by a tiger astronotus. Content requires good aeration. and water filtration.

To preserve the health of the inhabitants, it is enough to change the water by 1/3 weekly and monitor its temperature. The optimum is water at 23−27 C.

Despite the simple content, it is advisable to place gravel, pebble or large river sand on the bottom of the tank where the cichlid astronotus lives. The decor is perfect:

The decor in the aquarium should be close to natural conditions. From plants it is desirable to give preference to hard-leaved species with a strong root system growing in separate containers.

As an alternative, artificial stands.

Dimmed lighting will help the fish feel more secure. They tolerate a weakly acidic and alkaline environment with an optimal level for a pH of 6-7.5 units. and stiffness from 6 to 20 d GH.

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These fish are considered omnivorous, but the basis of their diet is food of animal origin. Vegetable food is needed as an additional source of necessary substances.

The best food are granules for cichlids. They must be living mosquitoes and frost.

If you buy them in dry form, then you have to choose large ones, since small ones will not be eaten completely, but only pollute the water in the tank.

Very popular bloodworm must be given only to young individuals. Adult fish is better to feed larger live food:

  • earthworms;
  • insects (crickets, grasshoppers).

Ostronotusa feed on everything, but the basis of their diet is animal food.

Before giving the earthworms, they must be kept for 3-4 days in the water so that they are clean of the remnants of the earth. Aquarists also often include squid, shrimp, saltwater fish, pieces of beef, liver, and heart in the astronotus diet.

They freeze the minced meat from these products and then use them as feed.

Some lovers of aquarium fish believe that the meat of mammals is harmful to the health of pets. For food astronotus they buy guppies, swordtails and goldfish fry, specially bred for this purpose.

Fish caught in natural sources may contain infection, which is dangerous to the health of cichlids.

Be sure to enter into the diet vitamin C, which is necessary for good health of the fish. It is found in plant foods.

Young individuals should be fed twice a day, and more adults need only 1 time, but in large portions.

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It is believed that astronotus is a rather peaceful fish and can get along with other representatives in the same tank, if it is spacious. However, carnivorous is alarming, so they are not recommended to keep with small species that can be perceived as food.

Larger representatives will not be offended, why conflicts may begin, in order to avoid what a large aquarium is necessary. Astronotuses often disturb the rest of the other inhabitants, starting to dig the ground, playing with equipment or decorative objects.

For this reason, it is best to place them in a pair in a separate container.

As aquarium neighbors for astronotus should not choose small fish.

Astronotus females are very difficult to distinguish from males. This is clearly visible only during the spawning period, when egg-laying appears. Also, they are distinguished by a more rounded abdomen.

Most often, breeders buy 1 dozen young animals, after which, when astronotuses reach sexual maturity, pairs are formed. This occurs when the fish grow to 10−12 cm

You can breed them in the aquarium where they live. To do this, create shelters with large flat-shaped stones, among which the fish will lay eggs, after clearing the chosen place.

Eggs are white and opaque in color, but during the day they can change their color. After the appearance of offspring, parents immediately begin to care for him.

As soon as the fry can swim on their own, they can be moved to another tank.

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