What to feed baby corydoras
Care Guide for Cory Catfish – The Perfect Community Bottom Dweller – Aquarium Co-Op
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Looking for a peaceful beginner fish with tons of personality? Look no further! The cory catfish, or Corydoras catfish, is one of the most popular community fish because they’re so happy-go-lucky, easy to breed, and helpful as a clean-up crew. In this care guide, we answer some of the most frequently asked questions about this adorable bottom dweller.
What are Corydoras?
This genus of South American catfish includes more than 160 species, with several hundred more that are waiting to be classified. Ranging from 1 to 3 inches long in the aquarium hobby, they’re named after the bony plates of armor on their body. For protection against predators, these little catfish also have sharp spines in their fins that can sometimes produce a mild venom when stressed (in other words, don’t try to catch them with your bare hands).
Depending on the species, most cory catfish enjoy temperatures between 72 and 82°F. For example, peppered cory catfish (Corydoras paleatus) and julii cory catfish (Corydoras julii) are found on the cooler end of the spectrum, whereas sterbai cory catfish (Corydoras sterbai) can live in higher temperatures. They also prefer pH levels ranging from 6.5 to 7.8.
In the wild, corydoras have been observed in large groups numbering from 20 to hundreds of the same species. They are most active in the daytime, with peak activity occurring at dawn and dusk. The most popular varieties in the pet trade include the bronze cory and albino cory (Corydoras aeneus), panda cory (Corydoras panda), emerald green cory (Corydoras splendens), and pygmy cory (Corydoras pygmaeus).
Pygmy cory catfish are one the smallest species of corydoras and love to swim in the middle of the tank, not just the bottom.
What Size Tank Do Cory Catfish Need?
For dwarf species, a 10-gallon aquarium may be suitable, but we recommend 20 gallons or more for most other varieties. As a relatively small fish, they crave safety in numbers, so a group of six corydoras or more (all of the same species) is highly suggested. These peaceful bottom dwellers can be kept with pretty much any community fish that won’t eat or attack them. (For instance, don’t keep corydoras with goldfish, which get rather large and will inhale anything that fits in their mouth.)
If you’re looking for fish stocking ideas, a 20-gallon aquarium could house a school of cory catfish swimming at the bottom, a school of small tetras swimming in the middle layer, and a centerpiece fish like a honey gourami. Add some lush aquarium plants and you’ve got a miniature ecosystem in your living room!
Cory catfish like to shoal together (or swim loosely in a group), so get at least six of the same species so they feel safe and comfortable.
Do Cory Catfish Need Sand Substrate?
Corydoras have wispy barbels or whiskers to help them find food, so smooth sand or gravel is preferred. (That being said, our CEO Cory McElroy visited their natural habitat in the Amazon and found the substrate to be quite sharp, as seen in this video. ) In general, it helps to feed larger foods like worms and Repashy gel food that can sit on top of the substrate and not get trapped in between cracks where the corys can’t reach them.
In the wild, corydoras can be found on sharp substrate, so if their barbels start to erode, it may be caused by other factors like poor water quality.
What Should I Feed My Cory Catfish?
Speaking of diet, corydoras are not picky eaters and will eat anything small or soft enough to fit in their mouths. They love worms of all types, so try live blackworms, frozen bloodworms, and Hikari Vibra Bites (tiny food sticks that look like bloodworms). They also enjoy Repashy gel foods, sinking wafers, and other sinking community foods.
They are not primarily algae eaters, so you will need to specifically feed them to make sure they get enough nutrition. If housed with more aggressive eaters, it can be easy for cory catfish to get outcompeted during feeding times, causing them to waste away.
Corydoras are not algae eaters and therefore must be regularly fed in order to live a long, healthy life.
Can You Breed Cory Catfish in Aquariums?
Yes, very easily! Many fish keepers find that their corydoras breed randomly all the time without any special effort. Males have a smaller and thinner profile, whereas females are rounder and larger to hold all the eggs. Condition them (or prepare them for breeding) by feeding lots of nutritious foods, such as live blackworms and frozen bloodworms. You can also induce spawning by introducing cooler than normal water (by a few degrees) during water changes to imitate the rainy season. Soon enough, you’ll find sticky round eggs all over your tank walls and decor.
If you want to breed the catfish in the same tank they live in, it helps to provide lots of cover – such as a dense mass of java fern or guppy grass – and remove other species of fish. All fish (including the parents themselves) will happily eat the eggs, given the chance. For a higher survival rate, you can remove the eggs (with your fingers or a credit card) into a separate aquarium to raise the fry. Feed the baby catfish plenty of live baby brine shrimp and powdered fry food, keep on top of the water changes, and enjoy a whole new generation of corydoras.
Best of luck with your new cory catfish!
How To Raise Cory Catfish Babies (Full Guide With Pictures)
- Updated on July 8, 2022
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So, you’ve just spawned your cory catfish. Woohoo! Now it’s time for the fun part: raising your fry. Even though it can be challenging job that takes a lot of effort, it’s extremely rewarding to see your cory catfish fry grow to adults.
So folks, buckle up because in this post you’ll learn everything and more about how to raise cory catfish fry super fast, with the highest possible success rate.Corydoras panda newly hatched fry. Photo by Dornenwolf
Depending on what species of cory catfish you plan to breed, this can either be a super hard task or rather easy. However, most cory catfish species can be incited to spawn by imitating the rain season in which these fish breed in the wild.
I will not be going into this topic into great detail, because this post is about raising the fry, but here is a short version. Our entire post on how to spawn cory catfish.
1. Heavily condition the adult fish
The first part of breeding any fish is feeding them and preparing them to spawn. Spawning is a process that asks a lot of effort and resources, especially from the female. This is why you should feed your fish heavily with live foods during at least two weeks.
The females will start making eggs and getting fatter, as well as the males. The more you feed them, the fatter they will become and the more eggs you will get.
Great foods are grindal worms, blackworms, bloodworms, tubifex and mosquito larvae. Always feed a variety of these foods, because otherwise your fish will not have enough nutrients.
2. Add spawning mobs / enough decoration
If you have not already, this is a crucial step when breeding cory catfish. Cory catfish don’t lay their eggs in tubes or in a specific place, they just stick them on whatever surface they can.
Some species prefer sticking their eggs on the glass, while others prefer using spawning mobs. It just comes down to adding enough decoration so that your cory catfish have enough choice to lay their eggs where they want.
3. Lower the water level
While keeping to heavily feed your corydoras, lower the water level day by day, until it reaches around 30-50% water level. This will make cory catfish think it’s the dry season. Consider highering the temperature of your tank by a few degrees to exaggerate the effect (don’t boil your fish, though!).
This depends on how hard your cory catfish are to breed, but you can hold this water level from a couple of days up to multiple weeks. This while feeding your cory catfish heavily and not performing any water changes.
4. Turn off the heater and add cooler water to the tank
After this period of drought is simulated in your tank, you can add new water to the tank. Some people use a watering can simulate real rain, but that’s up to you.
This is clean, cooler water (only a couple of degrees cooler, you don’t want to shock your fish too much) will make fish think it’s the start of the rain season. During this season, cory catfish naturally breed.
If everything goes well, you’ll see your cory catfish swimming throughout the tank being very excited. Then, the mating ritual begins and you’ll start spotting them in the classic t-shape. Eggs will be deposited against the glass, decoration or in your spawning mob. Spawning takes a couple of hours, but some species spread out egg laying over multiple weeks. This is why can find small batches of eggs per time.
Hatching the eggs
It kind of goes without saying, but you’ll first need to hatch the eggs of your cory catfish before you can start raising the fry. In fact, this is a quite challenging job by itself which takes quite some effort. Again, I’ll not go into it in full detail, because this post is about raising the fry. This post covers everything about cory catfish eggs.
The first thing to do when you see spawning behavior is… wait. The last thing you want is disturbing your cory catfish when they’re spawning. After everything has settled, you can start taking out the eggs.
Yes, this is absolutely necessary. Cory catfish are cannibalistic and will eat their own eggs. Don’t be too fast though. Let the eggs sit for a couple of hours so the shell can become harder. Otherwise, you might crush them by taking them out.
Set up a dedicated containerLots of Corydoras fry, Photo by Kerri Edwards
Before trying to take out any eggs, make sure you have the infrastructure in place to actually hatch them. Luckily, this is quite easy to do.
First, take out any plastic container you like. This can be an ice tub or a container you bought. I recommend a container that’s smaller than one gallon (3 liters) so that it easily fits in your tank.
The reason you want to place this tub in your tank is so that it’s permanently heated. This way more eggs will hatch faster.
Make sure to add an airstone to the tank, or any form of water fluctuation. This minimizes the chances of bacterial infections developing and makes sure the eggs get enough oxygen to develop.
Lastly, there’s one crucial step to prevent infections from reaching the eggs: adding an anti-bacterial agent. You can go for the synthetic option, being medicine or the natural options like catappa leaves.
The first one, adding something like eSha 2000 or Methalyne blue is certainly popular and it works.
I have always worked with natural options. My absolute favorite is Indian Almond leaves. The tannins in these leaves are beneficial and work anti-fungal and anti-bacterial. On top of that, they attract micro-organisms that the fry can eat. Buy Indian almond leaves on Amazon.
After three to five days eggs will hatch, pick out the unfertilized eggs, and change the water daily.
Read everything about hatching cory catfish eggs
Caring for Cory Catfish Fry
We’ve finally arrived at the part where you are coming for. Raising your cory catfish is a lot of fun, but it comes with a few challenges!
The food you give your hatched cory catfish fry is one of the if not the most important factors of raising cory catfish successfully. Without good food, cory catfish will not grow nearly as fast as they could and you’ll have a way bigger fallout percentage.
Yolk sack of the fry
Time frame: up to 48 hours after hatching
Right after hatching, cory catfish fry will not need food and survive off of their yolk sack. Feeding is unnecessary, but you can add catappa leaves. These leaves attract small microorganisms that the cory catfish fry can eat right away.
Time frame: directly after consummation of yolk sack
Powder foods is a great food to feed newly hatched cory catfish. It isn’t as nutritious as live foods such as micro worms, but it’s very convenient. It’s also very small so that newly hatched fry can easily digest it.
A great small product for cory catfish fry is Hikari first bites. This is designed specifically for baby fish so you can be ensured to feed the right foods. Buy Hikari first bites on Amazon.
Time frame: directly after consummation of yolk sack
Micro worms are a great food for small cory catfish fry. These 1-2mm long worms are very easy to culture, which makes them a great food source. When you want to feed them, just move your finger (or a brush if you don’t like that) alongside the walls of the container et voila, you have hundreds of worms ready to feed.
Time frame: directly after consummation of yolk sack
Egg yolk is probably one of the easiest and best foods to give to your cory catfish babies. If you don’t have a micro worm culture or special baby fish food, this is a great alternative, because chances are pretty big you have some eggs in your fridge. It’s also a very cheap option for people on a budget.
Egg yolk contains a ton of nutrients beneficial for the growth of your catfish. Newly hatched catfish even survive for the first few days on their own yolk sack, so it’s very similar to that.
However, this food shouldn’t be given too often, because it contains a lot of fat and cholesterol. It’s great for the first few days, but after this, you should start varying with other foods such as brine shrimp.
Here’s how you feed egg yolk to baby cory catfish:
- Boil the egg for 7-10 minutes
- Let it cool down
- Extract the yolk and feed tiny pieces of it
- Remove the uneaten food after 30 minutes or do a water change
Baby brine shrimp
Time frame: 1 week after hatching
Finally: we’ve come to the holy grail of fish foods. Baby brine shrimps or artemia are the best food to feed your cory catfish. They’re extremely nutritious and just the right size to feed to growing cory catfish.
Culturing them is very easy: the only things you need are a bottle, brine shrimp eggs, an air pump, and salt.
I recommend setting up two or even three hatcheries. This way you can feel every moment of the day without falling short on hatched artemia.
Necessities for hatching brine shrimp:
You can either build a hatchery yourself or if you’re not so handy you can go for a pre-built option:
Premium option: Aquavista Deluxe BBS Hatchery – $44,95
Budget option: HomeStore Brine Shrimp Eggs Incubator – $17,99
This is the most important part of hatching baby brine shrimp successfully. The quality of the eggs decides how much will actually hatch, so it’s a worthy investment. Many brands have their own bbs eggs, but I recommend going for a premium option.
Aquarium Co-Op has its own eggs, which have a hatch rate of 90%.
- Air pump
An air pump and tubing are critical so that the eggs are tumbled around in the hatchery. A small air pump can power two hatcheries. Buy an air pump on Amazon
Chopped up frozen / live foods
Time frame: 3-4 weeks after hatching
When your corydoras babies have grown for 3-4 weeks, you can start giving bigger foods. This includes a variety of frozen and live foods such as bloodworms, mosquito larvae, and artemia. It’s recommended to chop up these foods to create smaller pieces.
Pellets / dried foods
Time frame: 2-3 weeks after hatching
Dried foods are also great to feed to older cory catfish babies. The advantage of high-quality dried foods over frozen foods is that they’re more balanced and varied in nutrients. Whilst frozen/live foods are often too one-sided in nutrients and can cause health issues if fed only one type, dried foods contain more nutrients.
Another big advantage of dried foods is that they’re easy to use. If you’re working, it can be hard to create your own live food culture.
There are many great dried foods on the market but stay away from cheap options. These cheap options often contain more fillers than protein and are not nutritious. I’ve found Bug Bites to be working well, as well as the earlier discussed Hikari First Bites.
How often should you feed cory catfish fry?
Cory catfish fry should be fed at least twice a day, but it better is than three to four times a day. The more you spread out the feeding of your cory catfish babies, the more they can absorb and thus the faster they will grow.
In fact, the more you feed your fish, the better. Not quantity-wise, but frequency-wise. You can either feed your fish twice a day, pretty big portions or six times a day, pretty small portions.
Why is six times a day better? Well, your fish will absorb way more food when you divide the feedings over the day. On top of that, they’ll actually be able to eat more too. Both of these factors accelerate the growth of your corydoras babies.
So instead of feeding twice a day two spoons of food, feed your fish four times a day with half a spoon. Or better, eight times a day 1/4 of a spoon (although that’s unachievable for most).
In big breeding facilities, fish are constantly fed. Not four times a day, but eight or ten times a day. This way baby fish grow the fastest, which makes them the most money.
Pro tip: use a feeding automat
This is a tip I learned from Cory from Aquarium Co-Op. Like I said above, it’s better to feed your fish six times a day a small amount of food than it is to feed them twice a day a big amount of food.
Because it’s pretty much impossible for most people to feed their fish so many times consistently, an auto feeder is an ideal solution.
An auto feeder is programmable so that it deposits the exact same amount of food every time, up to six times a day.
I bought an Eheim auto feeder to feed my wild betta fry, and it works really well. I also use it when I’m on vacation.
You can buy your Eheim Auto Feeder on Amazon.
The best tank size for raising cory catfish fry is 20 gallons, preferably a long tank with a lot of bottom surface area. This will give the fry more swimming space since they live on the bottom of the tank. For newly hatched fry, a small tub of 1 gallon is best, because you can easily monitor them.
Small ice tub / container
Time frame: up to 2 weeks after eggs have hatched
As we discussed earlier, in the first days of their lives it’s recommended to set up a dedicated small container. It’s easy to monitor the eggs and the newly hatched fry in this tank.
In this small tub, which should be around one gallon, the cory catfish fry will find food way more easily, until they’ve grown bigger and have become more autonomous. You’ll also be able to spot sick fish or fish that have to be culled.
Overall, a small container is crucial for the first days of a corydoras life and you’ll have a much higher success rate when setting up a dedicated container.
Depending on how big your hatching container is and how fast your fry grows, you can transfer them to a bigger tank at around 1-2 weeks of age.
Time frame: upwards from 2 weeks after eggs have hatched
This is the tank where you can raise your cory catfish fry up until they’re ready to sell or up until they’re adult. Whether you use a grow-out tank or put your fry in the tank with the adults is up to you, but a grow-out tank has significant advantages.
- Easier to keep clean
If you set up a dedicated grow-out tank with minimal decoration or plants, it will be way easier to perform water changes and to keep the tank as clean as possible (causing faster growth). Many breeders prefer to use bare-bottom fish tanks. This way waste and fish poop will not stack up in the bottom and will instead be sucked up by the filter.
- Easier to heavily feed
If you want your fry to grow fast, you’ll have to feed a lot. In a community tank, your fry will have to share the food they get with the adults and the other fish living in the tank. You’ll also want to water change daily, and that’s easier in a smaller grow-out tank.
- Easier to monitor the growth of fry
A dedicated grow-out tank makes it easier to follow-up on the growth of your fish. If there are sick fish or deformed offspring, you can stay on top of this easily. Also, if you want to sell some offsrping, it’s way easier to catch out the fish.
As an alternative to creating your own tub / container to house newborn fry, you can use a special breeding box. Such boxes are designed to house small fish and come with a dedicated system to ensure aeration.
The Ziss Aqua Breeder is a premium option that I recommend. It’s one of the more expensive models, but it’s also the most advanced and it can last a lifetime. You can buy one at Aquarium Co-Op.
Filtration is very important when raising cory catfish. It can be confusing however on which filter to choose, so here are some of my recommendations.
The most important thing when choosing a filter is the flow rate. This simply means the amount of water it filters in one hour. For growing up fish, ideally, this is above 10x the volume of your fish tank/hour.
Sponge filters are one of my favorite types of filters. They’re very cheap, reliable and provide biological filtration. The only things you need are a sponge filter and an air pump.
These filters might not be a good choice to put in a tank with a lot of fry though. Fry poops a lot and since you’re probably overfeeding your fish, you’ll want to get a stronger filter.
For small cory catfish (< 2 weeks old) sponge filters are the best choice. Because sponge filters don’t have a strong inlet, it’s way safer for small fish that otherwise might get sucked up by the filter. These small fries also don’t produce as much waste, which makes a sponge filter more applicable.
The internal filter is a great choice to put in your grow-out tank. The big disadvantage of an internal filter is that it takes up aquarium space, so in bigger tanks, an external filter is a great choice.
External filters have my preference over internal filters. They’re fully disconnected from the tank, making them easy to repair or clean. Instead of taking up volume, they actually add volume to the tank.
The disadvantage to external filters is that they’re more pricey and that they’re more suitable for bigger tanks (a grow-out for cories might not be that big).
If you choose an external filter, make sure to get some netting to put over the inlet. This will prevent fry from getting sucked up.
Lighting isn’t that important when raising cory catfish. Only when you choose to add live plants to the tank, you should look into this. I recommend going for a cheap small option to save yourself from spending needless dollars.
SubstratePhoto by Adam B.
Whether you use substrate in your grow-out tank is fully up to you.
I always preferred to keep my grow-out tanks bare-bottom. Even though cory catfish like to dig in the sand, I find it way easier to keep a bare bottom tank clean than a tank with a substrate. Dirt can easily stack up in sand or gravel.
Now you might not find it very visually attractive to have a bare-bottom tank, so going with a substrate is completely fine. Here are some tips (or skip and read our full guide on cory catfish substrate) :
- Choose sand. Sometimes, cory catfish do well in sharp gravel. However, cory catfish fry is more sensitive and I prefer to play it safe, with sand or a rounded substrate.
- Keep a thin layer of sand. This way cory catfish fry can dig against the bottom, causing no waste or leftover food to stack up in the substrate.
Plants / decoration
I prefer to not put too many plants in my cory catfish grow-out tanks for practical reasons. It’s way more difficult to actually clean a tank when there’s tons of plants.
If you do want to use some plants in your tank, I recommend going for easy maintenance hardy plants. This way, they can easily withstand the quality of lighting you provide and the maybe fluctuating water parameters due to heavy water changes.
You also don’t want to be adding CO2.
What I do like to put in my grow-out tanks are big chunks of java moss. These provide extra cover, grow extremely fast, and are easy to clean around (instead of static plants).
It’s also handy to pick plants that grow on hard structures. This includes Anubias, Java fern, and all sorts of mosses. When you want to clean your tank you can easily take out the plants.
Maybe it’s a little dishonoring that this part comes last, but it is apart from the food you feed the most important thing to make your corydoras fry grow fast.
We’ve talked before about how the more you feed cory catfish the better. In order to maintain high water quality, regular water changes should be performed. The more you feed, the more water changes you should perform.
Stadium 1: hatching the eggs
In this stadium, you should be changing the water at least daily. Even though there aren’t any fish that poop yet, this is important to ensure that enough fresh and oxygenated water reaches the eggs.
Water changes are pretty easy to perform in this small tub/hatching container. You just scoop out 80% of the water using a mug or something like that and refill it with tank water. Really simple!
Stadium 2: newborn fry
You’re probably feeding powder foods or micro worms, and not all food will be eaten. This is why it’s important to do as many water changes as possible.
At this stadium, water changes are still easy to perform. I always use air tubing to hose out the uneaten food and poop. Then, I refill it with fresh water. I do this twice a day.
Stadium 3: raising the fry in the growout tank
This will be the biggest part of raising your cory catfish fry. From the age of around 2 weeks to the size you want to rehome them, your cory catfish will live in here.
It’s still extremely important to maintain a heavy water change schedule. Even though there is a filter working, you’ll feed more and the fish will poop more, so naturally, more water changes should be done.
How many water changes you have to do depends on numerous factors:
- How many fish you are rasing
- How big the tank is
- How strong the filtration is
- How often you feed
As a baseline, I’d recommend changing the water at least every 2-3 weeks. If you feed your fish two or more times a day, I recommend changing 30% daily. This will keep the water quality optimal.
Raising cory catfish successfully is a difficult task, but very rewarding. Here are the three most important things to focus on when raising cory catfish:
Providing cory catfish babies with the right nutrition is extremely important. As your fry grows, you’ll need to change their diet so they can grow fast.
In the first days of their lives, feed either micro worms or powder foods. After this, you can start feeding baby brine shrimp (highly recommended). When the corydoras fry has grown to around 1/2 inch (1,5cm) you can add some chopped-up frozen/liv
e foods to the mix. You can also feed high-quality pellets at this stage.
The more you feed the better. Higher frequencies mean that the fish can consume more food. You will have to do more water changes.
- Tank setup
From the first days of their lives, until they’re one to two weeks old, corydoras fry can be housed in a small container with an airstone. After this, it’s recommended to move them to a dedicated grow-out tank of 10-20 gallons depending on how many corydoras you want to raise.
The setup of such tank is quite simple, you can even leave it bare-bottom with minimal lighting and decoration. Filtration is the most important. A filter that filters around 10x the volume of the tank/hour minimum is recommended.
- Water changes
Even though a filter will help significantly in reducing waste materials and filtering fish poop, water changes are still crucial. How much water changes your fish need depends on how many fish you house, how big the tank is, what filtration you use and how much you feed.
As a baseline, you should aim toward changing water every two to three days. If you feed more than two times a day, aim for daily water changes.
Read everything about breeding cory catfish, from A-Z.
11 Best Plants For Cory Catfish (Full Guide - With Pictures)
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Corydoras are one of the most famous and popular aquarium catfish. These fish are extremely valued for keeping the bottom clean in their places of residence. Most common corridors are large fish that can grow up to 8-10 cm, but there are interesting exceptions - these are dwarf corridors, the most famous of which is called the pygmy corridor. In our article we will talk about the features of keeping these babies at home.
Corridor pygmy (Corydoras pygmaeus) - freshwater ray-finned fish from the family Callichtovyh, or Armored, catfish. The main feature of this species, as it follows from the name - miniature size. Adult individuals of the pygmy corridor are barely reach 2-2. 5 cm. This makes them good candidates for keeping in nano aquariums.
Color the body of this catfish does not play with a riot of colors, however, a strict and modest color makes it unique and sophisticated. Unlike their relatives who prefer to be closer to the ground, pygmy corridors love to swim in the middle part of the aquarium. The body of these fish is more elongated compared to other corridors, and if a flock of pygmy corridors swims in an aquarium, then from afar, they do not look like catfish at all. Fish like to rest on wide leaves of aquatic plants.
More one unusual feature of this catfish is the ability to direct its eyes down, which helps him in the study of the bottom.
Corridors pygmies are unpretentious in care and get along well with peaceful, proportionate fish. From the side, the corridors of the pygmies may seem “twitchy”. But it's just their peculiarity, due to the fact that they change the direction of movement with the help of sharp strokes of the pectoral fins.
Intestinal breathing is a characteristic feature of all corridors. The essence of this process is that part of the intestines of the fish can hold atmospheric air, and due to the large the number of vessels braiding this department, air can be used to breathing. Sometimes you can watch how the fish rise to the surface of the water and take a breath of air. In no case do not interfere with this process - it vital for corridors.
Corydoras the pygmy has an elongated and slightly flattened body. belly line straight. The “hump” on the head, characteristic of the Corydoras, is strongly smoothed. Fins transparent, abdominal and thoracic are especially developed. The tail is two-lobed, there is adipose fin. Mouth small, surrounded by two pairs of sensitive antennae. By on the sides of the body are rows of bone plates, creating a semblance of a shell.
Maximum size in the aquarium rarely exceeds 2-2.5 cm. Females are larger than males and have more rounded abdomen.
Body painted in silver color, the upper part is much darker than the lower. From the left and right sides in the middle there are dark lines that near the tail ending in an oval spot. In the region of the abdomen, there is also a thin a black line extending from the anal to the ventral fin.
Pygmy corridor. Appearance
Under the right conditions, catfish can live up to 3-4 years.
Historical The homeland of the pygmy corridor is South America. Its origin is a fish leads from the largest tributary of the Amazon - the Madeira River, which flows through territory of Brazil. It occurs mainly in numerous tributaries and shallow backwaters, avoiding the main riverbed. Fish do not like strong currents.
Corridor the pygmy prefers places with soft sandy or pebbly soil and numerous thickets of aquatic plants. Catfish find shelter among roots and fallen tree branches. During the rainy season, when the rivers overflow their banks, the fish often found in flooded areas of the rainforest. Corridors live large flocks.Madeira River - natural habitat of the pygmy corridors
Care and content
Thanks miniature size of pygmy corridors can be kept in nano-aquaria volume of 30-40 liters. Since, unlike their relatives, pygmies love to swim in the water column, in addition to areas with dense thickets of plants in the aquarium, provide space for free swimming. Be sure to have corridors there must be access to the surface of the water, this is necessary for periodic filling the intestines with air.Pygmy corridors require soft soil
Soil it is best to use sandy or small pebbles with rounded edges. it eliminates possible damage to the sensitive antennae of miniature catfish, which they use to search for food at the bottom.
It is better to decorate the aquarium with stones and snags. The latter will be excellent shelters and go well with living plants. Pygmy corridors like to rest on the leaves of plants, so broad-leaved species are well suited - echinodorus, cryptocorynes, anubias.Pygmy corridors should be kept in flocks
In an aquarium with pygmy corridors, it is important to ensure good filtration and aeration. Once a week, 20% of the water should be replaced with fresh water, which will eliminate the accumulation of toxic metabolic products. Tap water, which is most often used for water changes, is completely unsuitable for the life of fish, because it can contain a number of dangerous compounds, such as chlorine or heavy metals. To instantly make the water safe for the corridors, use the Tetra AquaSafe air conditioner.
Optimal water parameters for maintenance: Т=22-26°С, pH=6.4-7.4, GH=2-15.
Huge plus corridors of pygmies is their unusually calm character. Undoubtedly, having such dimensions it is difficult to carry a threat to anyone. But to suffer from others catfish can fish, so the choice of neighbors should be approached carefully.
The best cohabitants for corridors will be such small species of fish: small irises, tetras, neons, rasboras, nannostomuses, apistograms. Corridors get along well with freshwater shrimp: cherries, crystals, filter feeders.Corydoras pygmies get along well with rasboras
Feeding pygmy corridor
Natural the diet of pygmy corridors consists of plankton, detritus, insect larvae, worms and small crustaceans.
B at home, it is best to feed catfish with high-quality dry food for bottom fish. Excellent Tetra Cory ShrimpWafers, Tetra Wafer Mini Mix, Tetra Tablets TabiMin. These are completely balanced foods not only provide the corridors with all the nutrients, but also support the health and longevity of fish thanks to a complex of vitamins. Tablets and plates quickly sink to the bottom, which prevents them from eating more nimble aquatic inhabitants from the upper and middle layers of the aquarium. Thanks to special consistency, the feed retains its shape for a long time and does not pollute the water. It is worth adding that they are completely safe, unlike live and frozen food.
Reproduction and breeding
Corydoras Pygmies are fairly easy to breed in home aquariums. Often not even outside intervention will be needed for the fish to spawn and bring out offspring. A big plus is that pygmies do not eat their own and other people's caviar, therefore in the general aquarium, fish are often bred. Indeed, this requires a large flock of 10-12 individuals.
Breed corridors can also be in a separate container. This will require a small aquarium with a volume of 10-15 liters.
To to distinguish the corridors by the floor, it is best to look at them from above. females have a rounder and wider body. You can also pay attention to dorsal fin: in males it is sharp, and in females it is rounded.
Spawning at the corridors of the pygmies group. It is recommended to plant 1-2 females for 3-5 males. Ideally, a week before spawning of heterosexual individuals, it is recommended to separate and feed heavily.Pygmy corridors are characterized by group spawning
After transplanting into a spawning aquarium, it is recommended to simulate in it the “season rains ”- it is at this time that the breeding season begins in nature. For this aeration increases, the temperature rises by 2-3 ° C compared to normal and frequent changes are made with soft and acidic water. Under these conditions, the percentage fertilized eggs will be much higher.
Very the mating dance of the corridors of the pygmies is interesting. At first, the male attracts attention of the female, showing herself in all her glory. When she reciprocates the fish take a characteristic "T-position" (perpendicular to each other). Female collects male milk in his mouth, and throws several eggs into his ventral fins (2-5 pieces), after which he looks for a suitable place (plant leaf, stone, wall aquarium), lubricates it with milk and attaches eggs. Then the cycle repeats. For spawning, the female can lay from 30 to 50 eggs.
For methylene blue is added to the water to prevent the death of eggs from the fungus.
Incubation eggs takes 3-4 days, after which larvae with yolk a bag that provides them with food for another 2-3 days. Next, the fry go to self-sufficiency of food. Babies grow quickly, in 1.5-2 months reaching a size of more than 10 mm. The coloration of fry differs from adults: they have vertical stripes that disappear by the age of one month, replaced by characteristic horizontal ones.
Sexual Corydoras reach maturity at the age of 8-12 months.90,000 types, maintenance, breeding and reproduction, feeding, disease, disease
- How to contain corridors
Spotted is perhaps the most common breed in beginner aquariums. This baby is capable of unprecedented feats: it withstands fluctuations in any water parameters, lack of aeration and filtration. Of course, it is better not to allow a sharp increase or decrease in temperature, water pollution, as this can affect life expectancy. But at least you can be sure that in case of unforeseen situations, the speckled corridors will remain alive. They look quite simple: a gray-olive back, a light belly and large dark spots all over the body. Females are larger than males, grow up to 7 cm in length (males - up to 5 cm).
- Pygmy Corydoras – has an atypical body for these catfish, more elongated and less barrel-shaped. But the sizes are quite miniature - no more than 2 cm. The catfish has a light gray body with a thin dark stripe from head to tail.
- Panda - white corridor with black spots around the eyes, dorsal and caudal fins. Dimensions are relatively small - up to 4 cm.
- Golden corydoras – similar to the speckled corydoras in resistance to changes in water parameters, in size and color, but has a golden stripe from head to tail.
- Julie corydoras [Julia], leopard - a fish with a luxurious coloring: on a mother-of-pearl yellowish background, many dark spots resembling leopard ones. They can grow up to 6 cm. The whole body is covered with small spots - dark on a light sandy background. On the tail they merge into parallel horizontal stripes.
- Corydoras venezuela is a bright representative of these catfish, large spots of orange and gray shades are combined on the body. It belongs to the whimsical types of corridors, it is necessary to observe the conditions of detention more carefully.
- Corydoras arcuatus has a light gray body with a dark stripe evenly wide from head to tail. Slight orange pigmentation on gills. Sizes up to 5 cm.
- Similis Corydoras – light pearly body with many small dark spots disappearing in the head area. The body darkens near the tail. The fins are almost transparent. A species that has not gained popularity among aquarists.
- Adolf's corydoras is a white fish with a bright orange spot on the back of the head and dark stripes along the back under the dorsal fin and a vertical one running over the eyes. Sizes - up to 5 cm.
- Bronze - has a noble dark red body with a transition to black in the area of the dorsal fin.
- Corydoras trilineatus (trilinear) - similar to leopard, but the body is more gray than yellowish, and from about the middle to the tail on the sides the spots merge into a kind of three stripes.
- Albino Corydoras - has a white body with a pinkish tint and red eyes. Quite rare, like all albinos.
- Corydoras duplicareus – the color is similar to the corydoras adolf, but the color of the spot and shade of the tail is bright yellow, and the stripe on the back is wider.
- Habrozus corydoras - the baby barely reaches 2.5 cm in length. The dark back contrasts with the light belly; a wide black stripe runs along the body.
- The volume of the aquarium depends on the size of the adult. For example, for a pair of pygmies, a capacity of 30 liters is also suitable. The most standard living conditions are an aquarium from 50 liters. Corydoras feel more comfortable in a small flock of 4-5 pieces
- Aquarium shape - an aquarium that is wider rather than tall is preferable. For catfish, the calculation of the ideal ratio of the size of the aquarium to the number of individuals comes not from the volume, but from the bottom area. So, corridors are recommended to be kept at the rate of 24-26 cm of the total length of fish (excluding the caudal fin) for every 0.5 m 2
- Temperature 24-26°C. Some species can withstand from 10°C to 30°C, but it is best not to experiment and create comfortable conditions whenever possible
- Hardness 0-12. The softness of the water is achieved by the presence of snags, branches
- Acidity 6.0-7.5 (some species require other parameters, but these are average for all corridors)
- Water can be refreshed every two to three weeks, changing a quarter of the volume. Aeration and filtration must be established.
- The soil is better dark, preferably not sharp. Sand with a fraction of 1-3 mm is suitable.
- Decor should be placed so that catfish can feel free. The bottom is their living area, and it is not recommended to force it with stones and plant it densely with plants.
Catfish are indispensable inhabitants of the aquarium. They monitor the cleanliness of the soil, decor and walls of the aquarium, they are recommended as neighbors for almost all fish, even discus or neon. Corydoras - catfish, which even by itself can create a mood in the aquarium. It is mobile, does not hide at the bottom and does not lead a nocturnal lifestyle. The content is also quite simple.
These catfish, perhaps, cannot be confused with others. They have a foldable dense body with a large head and a voluminous convex back, gradually tapering towards the tail. The back is solid due to the bone plates that run along from head to tail. The mouth, as standard for catfish, is located below - it is so convenient to collect food from the bottom. Around the mouth there are three pairs of short whiskers, which are convenient to study the ground and navigate when the water becomes cloudy.
Species diversity is huge, over 150 species, many of which are successfully kept in the home aquarium. Here is some of them.
How to care for Corydoras
Coryridas can be found naturally throughout South America. Only breeds differ. These fish love waters with a weak current, shallow and calm.
Let's talk about how long the corridors live. Life expectancy in good conditions can last up to 15 years. To make these 15 years happy and joyful, you need to comply with several conditions of maintenance and care.
Since catfish are often kept with other fish, it is important to observe whether the food reaches them. There are fish voracious and agile. When feeding, they collect flakes and granules already from the surface and in the water column at such a speed that nothing can reach the bottom. In this case, the corridors will either have to surface and feed in a way that is not typical for them, or be content with a raid on the ground and walls. In both cases, there will be little benefit to the health of the fish. Therefore, both dry and live food must be delivered to the very bottom, where the corridor eats them with pleasure.
Some species of these catfish feed only on live food, this is important to remember when choosing. For example, the growth of the panda corridor is very dependent on the diet. You need to understand: for any species, diversity in nutrition, food rich in vitamins is important.
Behavior and compatibility
On the one hand, corydoras, like other catfish, lead a "near-bottom" lifestyle and practically do not interfere with the rest of the inhabitants of the aquarium. Catfish emerge only to swallow an air bubble. But on the other hand, these are still small fish, practically not protected by a shell. Therefore, non-aggressive fish, not seen in fights for territory and without a desire to feast on other fish, will approach the corridors first of all. These are barbs, goldfish, zebrafish, guppies, swordtails, angelfish and other similar species. The corridors themselves will be absolutely not dangerous even for neons.
Corydoras catfish are best kept in a flock of 6-8 individuals.
How to determine the sex of the corridors, to distinguish the female from the male? The female in almost all cases is noticeably larger than the male. By one and a half years, both the female and the male are ready for breeding. In the spawning ground, the conditions of which are similar to the usual fish (volume 60 l, temperature 1-2 degrees cooler), one female and 2-3 males settle. The males chase the female around the aquarium until she chooses one of them. Having collected his milt in her mouth, she finds a suitable place (the surface of a plant, a snag, an aquarium wall), lubricates it with milt and places several eggs there, which by this moment have appeared in a “pouch” in the abdomen area. This happens several times with different males. Since males can immediately eat eggs, at this time they can be distracted by throwing some food to the bottom.
After the breeding process has been completed, the spawners can be placed back in the community aquarium. Caviar care is not required, weak aeration and filtration is enough to prevent water stagnation. A week later, larvae appear, they are fed with “live dust”, then with food for fry. After a month and a half, the fish are ready to move into a common aquarium.
Some species of Corydoras (eg Adolfi) do not breed in captivity.
Corydoras are prone to many aquarium diseases, but they rarely get sick. These include fungal infections (cloudy spots), bacterial infections (red spots on the abdomen), fin rot, and parasite infestation. It is characteristic of catfish that, having damaged their whiskers, they can die of starvation. Incomplete damage to this important part can recover over time, but this is a rather lengthy process. It is still better not to endanger the mustache (remove sharp objects from the aquarium).