Tag Archives: maculatus

Macrognathus maculatus

23. May 2022

Spiny eels enjoy an increasing popularity. More and more aquarists are discovering that it is not always the colorful, constantly visible fish that are fun to watch, but also the more hidden fish personalities that are often only seen when feeding. Among these fish personalities are definitely the spiny eels.

There are spiny eels in different sizes: from the only about 10 cm long Macrognathus pancalus from India to the “giant spiny eel” Mastacembelus armatus with up to 90 cm. Unfortunately, a rule of thumb for size that was very helpful for a long time no longer works. Until scientific revisions of the genus in the last 5 years one could always say well: Asian spiny eels with a clearly separated caudal fin remain small, with those with a circumferential dorsal tail and anal fin one must watch out, they can become half a meter long and as thick as an arm. In the meantime, small species of the latter group are known as well as large ones of the former (the recently described Macrognathus kris from Borneo, which can reach a length of 40 cm).

Macrognathus maculatus has a circumferential fin and originates from Indonesia and Malaysia; reports from other parts of Southeast Asia (Cambodia, Vietnam) probably refer to similar other species. Size-wise, the species is in the middle range. Our animals are fully sexually differentiated (males are much slimmer than females) and 15-20 cm long. In the literature one finds size data up to 28 cm. The variable colored species is in any case very nicely patterned and very peaceful. Only very small fish should not be kept together with them: sooner or later they will end up in the stomach of the spiny eels.

For our customers: the animals have code 425253 on our stock list. Please note that we supply only wholesale.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer

Platy Wagtail Pointed Tail

16. August 2021

The “pointed tail” mutation, in which the middle caudal fin rays are elongated, appeared relatively late: the first specimens appeared on the market in the 1980s. It originated in the Southeast Asian large-scale breederies.

The characteristic, which first appeared in the Platy (Xiphophorus maculatus), can also be transferred to other Xiphos, but the pointed tail has really become established in the long term only in Wagtail Platys. Here it is especially the red breeding forms, which are offered with pointed tail. Because with very large and old animals the innermost rays can grow somewhat over the fin, one calls this breeding form sometimes also “brush tail”. Apart from the fin shape, the pointed tails are quite normal platys: lively, colorful and robust. 

For our customers: the animals have code 442103 on our stoclist. Please note that we supply exclusively to wholesalers.

Xiphophorus maculatus “Tabasco”

23. April 2021

Hearing the name Tabasco, the first thing that comes to mind for a Central European is the spicy chili sauce. However, the Platy (Xiphophorus maculatus) that bears this name is neither particularly fiery nor particularly red – it merely originates, like the chili sauce, from the Mexican state of Tabasco, where this population was first found by Dutch ornamental fish enthusiasts and brought to Europe (more informations on that are in preparation). 

The basic coloration of the animals is an inconspicuous gray; what makes them very special is the golden bordered shoulder spot, which many (but not all) animals show. This characteristic is also known from populations from the Mexican state of Veracruz. So far this “Admiral´s epaulette” has not been crossed into breeding lines. Other interesting features of this wild platy from Tabsco are the partially transparent gill cover, resulting in a red spot, and a highly variable tail root pattern that can be completely absent, form a double crescent, or a Mickey Mouse pattern. 

The particular challenge in long term breeding of such fish is to maintain variability. It is all too easy to succumb to the temptation of selecting particularly pretty specimens, which results in a uniform type after only a few generations that no longer has much in common with the wild population. To avoid this, as many color variants as possible from the respective population should be allowed to swim in the largest possible mixed shoal. This at least increases the probability that the diversity of forms of a population prevailing in nature will also be preserved among the offspring born in the aquarium.

For our customers: the animals have code 476577 on our stocklist. Please note that we supply exclusively to wholesalers.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer

Metynnis sp. Big Spots Peru

9. July 2020

From Peru we occasionally receive beautiful young Metynnis. We have not yet been able to identify them; they either belong to a scientifically undescribed species or represent a local form of M. maculatus. They certainly belong to the species cluster around Metynnis maculatus and we think that the final size, similar to M. maculatus, is around 20 cm. Conspicuously at the young animals, which are 4-6 cm long at present, are the particularly large spots at the body. They also have a deep red anal fin and a strong orange-red zone on the gill cover. The larger the animals become, the more points they develop. However, we have not yet had these fish larger than 8-10 cm with us, so we do not know what the final coloration looks like. 

It is absolutely necessary to keep these silver dollars in groups of at least eight – better more – specimens. They are lively swimming animals, which require a relatively large aquarium. Planting is usually not possible, as plants are generally seen by fish as a food supplement.

For our customers: the animals have code 268072 on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply the wholesale trade.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer

Metynnis sp. Big Spots Peru

1. July 2020

From Peru we occasionally receive beautiful young Metynnis. We have not yet been able to identify them; they either belong to a scientifically undescribed species or represent a local form of M. maculatus. They certainly belong to the species cluster around Metynnis maculatus and we think that the final size, similar to M. maculatus, is around 20 cm. Conspicuously at the young animals, which are 4-6 cm long at present, are the particularly large spots at the body. They also have a deep red anal fin and a strong orange-red zone on the gill cover. The larger the animals become, the more points they develop. However, we have not yet had these fish larger than 8-10 cm with us, so we do not know what the final coloration looks like. 

It is absolutely necessary to keep these silver dollars in groups of at least eight – better more – specimens. They are lively swimming animals, which require a relatively large aquarium. Planting is usually not possible, as plants are generally seen by fish as a food supplement.

For our customers: the animals have code 268072 on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply the wholesale trade.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer

Boraras maculatus

29. June 2020

The Dwarf rasbora (Boraras maculatus, formerly known as Rasbora maculata) is the species of genus Boraras that is known for the longest time in the hobby. None of these species grows bigger than 2-3 cm and thus they are perfect candidates for the so-called nano-aquaria. All like to be kept in soft and acidic water, rather dark tanks, that should nevertheless be well planted (best use swimming plants), fine live food (although they also take readily dried food) and company of their own kind.

The Dwarf rasbora inhabits the malayian peninsula, southern Thailand and Sumatra. Initially it was often thought to represent the juvenile of the much larger growing species Rasbora kalochroma, but observations of the fish in aquaria and their successful breeding left no doubt on the validity of the species.

There do exist lots of varieties of the Dwarf rasbora which may proof to be different species one day. Typical for all of them is the large shoulder spot, which is in any cases bigger than the eye. The ground coloration of the body depends on the variety and can be light orange up to deep red. Some populations have an additional black spot (all Dwarf rasboras have three black blotches: one on the shoulder, one on the origin of the anal fin, and one on the caudal fin base) on the beginning of the caudal peduncle right above the anal fin.

Our animals currently in the stock, of which the photos for this post were also taken, come from Indonesia.

For our customers: the species has code 452702 on our stocklist. Please note that we exclusively supply to the wholesale market.

Text and photos: Frank Schäfer

Dicrossus maculatus xxl German Bred

6. December 2019

The checkerboard dwarf cichlids (Dicrossus) belong to the most beautiful of all dwarf cichlids. However, they are very demanding concerning the chemical water composition, at least when it comes to breeding. Then they need almost distilled water with a pH value around 5. Any bacterial load is only poorly tolerated. For this reason, Dicrossus are only very rarely reproduced by professional breeders, for the high amount of work required is hardly rewarded in the trade.

Now, however, we have received truly wonderful, fully grown German offspring from D. maculatus. Of course the animals are not cheap, but their colourfulness justifies the price. The males are more than twice as big as the females. One should keep this species, as in nature, in a harem association, i.e. per male with 3-7 females.

For our customers: the fish have code 668514 on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply wholesalers.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer

Xiphophorus maculatus “Belize Purple”

6. November 2019

The wild type of the “normal” Platys (Xiphophorus maculatus) is cared for as good as never in the aquarium. This is partly due to the fact that “the” wild type of the Platy does not exist at all, but a large number of colour variants, which partly only occur locally, but partly also in different populations. Already between 1912 and 1934 different such colour variants were imported and bred in the aquarium, so “pulchra” (= the beautiful one), “rubra” (= the red one), “nigra” (= the black one) or “cyanellus” (= the blue one). The fact that these are not independent species, but only colour variations, is made clear by the fact that several variants often occur at the same locality. These colour variants form the basis for the many Platy breeding forms that exist today in the aquarium.

Despite the many breeding forms, wild types are desirable and interesting fish, because they show us the breeding choice of nature, not the taste of human breeders. One such wild form is the Belize Purple, which Harry Grier collected in 2003 at a place called “Kate´s Lagoon” on the Belize River.  There do occur four colour variants: body red (br), which are the “Belize Purple”, but also spotted dorsal (sd), iridescent blue (blue) and wild type body (+). The abbreviations in brackets indicate the genetic code used internationally by Platy researchers.

Belize Purple is pure breeding, both sexes show the unusual red coloration, but it is more intense in the males. According to our breeder, the colours of older fish become even more intense!

For our customers: the animals have code 476568 on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply wholesalers.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer

Thoracocharax stellatus, Gasteropelecus maculatus JUMBO, Carnegiella myersi, Carnegiella strigata

26. July 2019

The platinum hatchetfish, Thoracocharax stellatus, is regarded as biggest species of the hatchetfish. In the scientific literature, up to 6.8 cm of standard length (without tail fin) are indicated for the species. However, much smaller animals are always imported. The specimens that we currently offer as “large” have a standard length of about 3.5-4 cm.

Thoracocharax stellatus is mostly imported from Colombia. From there we have now received Gasteropelecus maculatus, which can compete in size with Thoracocharax. They have about 6 cm standard length, so with caudal fin almost 7 cm. G. maculatus is very similar to Thoracocharax, mainly because of the dark base of the dorsal fin and was placed at times in the genus Thoracocharax, indeed.

From Peru we have the smallest of all hatchet belly fish in stock, the glass or dwarf hatchet Carnegiella myersi. Large females of this species reach only 2.2 cm standard length, males are even smaller. 

If you read these numbers, the differences may not seem so big, but if you can see the animals together – wow! It’s especially funny when a tiny male Carnegiella is displaying in front of a specimen of G. maculatus, which must appear to him as a “super woman”…

For this post we have also made pictures of the probably most famous and popular of all hatchet fishes, the marble hatchet (Carnegiella strigata), together with the jumbo maculatus. The marble hatchets are already fully grown.

For our customers: T. stellatus “lg” has code 297003, G. maculatus “Jumbo” 254207, C. myersi 214102 , and C. strigata 214203 on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply wholesalers.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer

Metynnis maculatus

19. November 2018

There are two rather similar species of the silver dollar genus Metynnis with a pattern of black spots. They differ mainly by the (externally not visible) number of the gill rakes and the number of scales along the long side of the body, but also somewhat in relation to the body shape. We currently call the somewhat more oval animals from Brazil M. lippincottianus (see https://www.aquariumglaser.de/fischarchiv/metynnis_cf_lippincottianus_en/) and the more disc-shaped ones from the Orinoco entry M. maculatus; but it could also turn out in a scientific investigation that it is exactly the other way around.

Recently we received this very attractive M. maculatus from Colombia again. According to literature, the species becomes 18-20 cm long. Even if the herbivorous silver dollars are often characterized as “peaceful” against the “bloodthirsty” Piranhas: they are tetras and they can also quarrel. In the case of Metynnis, the animals often tatter the tail fin in the course of the ranking-fights. However, this is harmless and heals quickly again.

For our customers: the animals have code 268002 on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply wholesalers.

Text & photos: Frank Schäfer