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Any tips for gourami fry past the 2 week stage?

LindaJanie

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My "surprise breeding" has resulted in more 2-week & week-old fry than I can count. From two spawnings, my 40 gallon tank contains hundreds. The parents are still in there. Dad is not beating up Mama; neither parent is eating the fry. I've watched both parents swim through clouds of tiny fry (it's mesmerizing, I can sit there for hours) & see no cannibalism. Been feeding them green water & freeze-dried tubifex which I squeeze out in the water to release a cloud of "tubifex fog" (dunno what to call it). When I release the microscopic tubifex or green water, the schools of fry respond. It's the coolest thing. The tank is full of plant life and algae, and I can see the fry grazing on it. Seems like a good environment for all (so far). Small water changes every day; parameters good. Top of tank wrapped in plastic wrap to maintain high humidity above the water. Very mild current in tank from cannister filter. Loaches & cories still in there, too. I'm setting up 3 empty 10-gallons in case some of the fry survive. Now, any advice for whatever I'm missing or don't know??
 

Retired Viking

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I would really like to see a picture or two or even a video of this :) Never had gourami fry. I had mollie, chiclids and tetra fry, I would grind down fish food flakes to dust and feed them that.
 

Colin_T

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Start feeding them newly hatched brineshrimp and microworms. The link below has some info on that. Feed the babies 3-5 times per day and do lots of water changes.

In about month's time, the older babies will start to eat any new babies so you need to get the bigger fry out when that happens. But right now they will be fine together.
 
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LindaJanie

LindaJanie

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I would really like to see a picture or two or even a video of this :) Never had gourami fry. I had mollie, chiclids and tetra fry, I would grind down fish food flakes to dust and feed them that.
Thanks! Flakes into dust is exactly what I've been doing in addition to the pulverized tubifex & green water (which they respond to like crazy). I can actually see the bigger free eating (magnifying glass) which is the coolest thing ever. I'll try to get a few pictures. This tank is difficult to photograph because it's near a window; even with the blinds shut, there's a glare. But I'll try. It's just the coolest thing to watch.
 
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LindaJanie

LindaJanie

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Start feeding them newly hatched brineshrimp and microworms. The link below has some info on that. Feed the babies 3-5 times per day and do lots of water changes.

In about month's time, the older babies will start to eat any new babies so you need to get the bigger fry out when that happens. But right now they will be fine together.
Thank you. I have no idea what I'll do with hundreds of fry, but I'll assume at this point that some will not make it. The parents aren't bothering them; in fact, the female keeps chasing the male back to his corner of the tank. Most of the babies are in her territory. I've got three empty 10-gallons in the unlikely event that all these little creatures live. They are utterly fascinating. The 2-week olds are schooling with the week-olds but are easy to spot due to size. All of them look like fish now. The older ones are no longer translucent in the body area. Otherwise, I I'm feeding the babies 4X per day, monitoring water parameters & doing daily changes. I'm thinking that as they grow, I'll up the changes.

Do you think that'll be a good idea? Is a couple of gallons 2X per day too much?
 
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LindaJanie

LindaJanie

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I would really like to see a picture or two or even a video of this :) Never had gourami fry. I had mollie, chiclids and tetra fry, I would grind down fish food flakes to dust and feed them that.
Here you go. I have lots & lots & lots of fry. More than I realized. Many, many more than I initially realized. Dad made another nest, which I broke up before it was full of eggs. I've got a 10-gallon ready to move whatever (part of whatever) fry are left this time next week.
MOM AND FRY.png
FRY 3.png
FRY 2.png
DAD SURROUNDED BY FRY WORKING ON NEST.png
MALE IN BREEDING COLORS.png
MOM AND FRY.png
 

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Wow, that is a lot of fry, thank you for posting the pictures. The adults are nice looking fish. I had 8 African Cichlids that were rescues, they took over my 55 gallon tank and before I knew it I had over 50 fry that survived to be adults. That was many years ago and I ended up giving away as many as I could and removing everything out of the tank to stop them from having more. Good luck with your fry.
 

Colin_T

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Don't break up the bubblenest because the male can become frustrated and go nuts. If this happens he could kill the female and babies.

If you leave the bigger babies in the tank, they will eventually start eating the smaller ones and reduce the overall population. then you can sell the bigger fry.
 
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LindaJanie

LindaJanie

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Wow, that is a lot of fry, thank you for posting the pictures. The adults are nice looking fish. I had 8 African Cichlids that were rescues, they took over my 55 gallon tank and before I knew it I had over 50 fry that survived to be adults. That was many years ago and I ended up giving away as many as I could and removing everything out of the tank to stop them from having more. Good luck with your fry.
Thank you. I'm going to move Daddy tomorrow. He's at it again. I've never seen anything like this. I mean, never, and I've been keeping fish since I was a little girl. It's hypnotic to watch the fry and the parents; Daddy zealously guarding his latest nest, Mrs. Gourami swimming among a swarm of fry, occasionally cruising over to check in with Dad. The online experts all said he would chase her. That hasn't happened yet, nor have the parents eaten any of their young. My tank is lush and mossy; I feel like I'm peering into a pond in SE Asia right there in my fish room.
 
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LindaJanie

LindaJanie

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Don't break up the bubblenest because the male can become frustrated and go nuts. If this happens he could kill the female and babies.

If you leave the bigger babies in the tank, they will eventually start eating the smaller ones and reduce the overall population. then you can sell the bigger fry.
Thanks for the advice! I really appreciate it! Mr. Gourami is moving to bachelor quarters tomorrow. He's such a beautiful fish; I don't want him to die of exhaustion. The female is the aggressive one in my situation. She won't let him on her side of the tank, then she swims to the nest & seduces him. For real. I finally got to watch the whole dance. She went to his turf repeatedly; each time they locked their mouths and pushed on each other, then they'd both back off. She came back a bunch of times, then they looked at each other and furled their gill covers, moving around each other slowly, face-to-face. Next thing, they both lowered their dorsal fins. She rolled on her side just under the surface plants. It was all slow-motion and lovely, like an underwater ballet. They repeated this process ad infinitum. I watched the male gather up the eggs and carefully spit them into his latest nest. Oh, also, he's been eating fine while nest guarding; he opens his mouth to break the surface tension, facing into the gentle current & sucks down whatever comes his way. I do have two gentle filters going & if a few fry got sucked up, there are plenty more who didn't. I want to keep the whole tank healthy, not just the fry. It's an exciting business, to be sure. Oh, one other thing: I haven't done an infusoria culture because the green water is soooooooo easy thanks to a bunch of well-aged filter sponges near my windows. I've been checking drops of my accidental green water factory under the microscope; it's full of one-celled algae and critters. The fry must like it, because so many are alive, right?
 
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