Bocia macracantha is one of the most interesting representatives of the underwater fauna found in aquariums of amateurs. Unfortunately, it is quite rare to meet behind the glass of room water bodies. This is due to both the size of the fish, requiring appropriate containers for keeping, and with the difficulties of obtaining offspring in artificial keeping.
Bocia macracantha Distribution in nature
Botia macracantha inhabits the swift rivers of Sumatra and Kalimantan. In the wild, its length can reach 30 centimeters. In aquarium conditions, it more often reaches a length of 15 centimeters. Its bright yellow body is crossed by three vertical anthracite stripes. The last of them goes to the dorsal and anal fins. The pelvic and caudal fins have in their coloration of scarlet tones. Large black eyes are located on the oblong-shaped head. Under each of them is a very sharp spike, which under normal conditions is not visible. It protrudes above the surface of the skin only when the fish is stressed.
Bocia macracantha creature gregarious, so it is desirable to keep it in small flocks of five to seven individuals. You could be more, but remember the size of the fish and each of them requires at least fifty liters of water (ideally from a hundred liters). So, even a flock of five tails will require a tank of 250 liters, or better three hundred.
The height of the aquarium is critical. And the size is limited not from above, but from below. Shallow water depresses bocia macracantha. Therefore, the aquarium for her should have a height of at least 60 centimeters.
Water hardness should be about 12 degrees Celsius, pH 6-7. The water temperature is 24-26 degrees Celsius.
Bocia likes clean, oxygen-rich water. Therefore, the aquarium must be equipped with artificial aeration and a biofilter.
Feed these fish should be a variety of animal food. Plant bait is also necessary. Vitamin supplements will not be superfluous. If the fish will not receive full nutrition, then the length of its body will not reach even ten centimeters. Its splendor and beauty will remain undiscovered.
Bocia macracantha Plants for aquarium design
The fish is relatively indifferent to vegetation. If your favorites will receive a nutritious diet, the pond with them can be decorated with any plants to your liking with suitable conditions of content.
If the bocia shows a gastronomic interest in greenery, it may be a signal to you that its diet is impoverished and should be reconsidered.
Neighbors in the aquarium should be of commensurate size. Otherwise, bocia may sin of cannibalism. Although this is also just a manifestation of a depleted diet. When a lion has horse meat, it does not feed on human victims.
True, the conversation about neighbors botsia macracantha in a room aquarium, probably more rhetorical. Think about the size of their home for a flock of five fish. For neighbors will have to increase these sizes even more. And this for most amateurs is already too much.
For the soil you can use sand of medium fraction, small pebbles, granite chips (can increase the hardness of water) fine expanded clay.
At the bottom should be equipped with enough shelter in the form of grottos, caves or just a stone slide, behind which you can sit in proud solitude when relatives and neighbors get it.
The lighting should be soft. This is more physiological for the fish and they look more attractive in dim light. The light from an airfield spotlight will discolor their magnificent coloration.
Bocia macracantha Captive breeding
Captive breeding of Macracantha bocia is also not without its peculiarities.
For spawning use old water from the aquarium, replacing only 20-25% of fresh tempered water. Chemist physical indicators of water change as follows. Temperature is increased to 28-30 degrees Celsius. the reaction of the medium is stabilized at values 6,8-7. The hardness is lowered to 4 degrees.
The lighting is dimmed even more than when keeping adults.
Now we remember that our bocia lives and spawns in rivers with turbulent streams. So until you simulate this very turbulent stream, spawning will not occur.
The water should be stirred gently
Aerolifts are rejected immediately, because with their help, if you create the necessary flow, then around the aquarium will spill a miniature tropical rain of splashes. In addition, the eggs of bocia float in the water column, so the rain may be not only from the splash, but also from eggs.
You can’t use the pump in its purest form either. If the eggs get caught in the blades of the centrifugal pump. it’s not like we’re making an omelet. You can close the suction holes with a fine mesh, with the suction pipe is desirable to slightly raise above the bottom and periodically turn off the pump for a short time to sucked eggs fall to the bottom.
The power of a pump alone may not be sufficient. Those who have managed to achieve spawning of captive bocia indicate a direct correlation between the intensity of the current and spawning. The more intense the current, the more eggs. Then you can try to turn on several pumps in parallel or assemble a similar underwater fan, not forgetting about electrical safety and taking measures to prevent contact of eggs with the blades of the propeller.
So, if after all this you are still enthusiastic about the successful spawning of bocia in your home aquarium farm, then, most likely, sooner or later you will succeed. And you can start trying right now.
We allocate spawning tank, equip it with hydrodynamic installation, correct the physicochemistry of water, planted to spawn one female and two, three males.
We’ve done everything we can. What’s next?
If your intentions were unwavering, your thoughts pure, your desires selfless, you did everything without mistakes, recited mantras without emphasis, spawning may occur.
No offense dear reader. I am not mocking, but just trying to give you a proper idea of how difficult it is to get offspring in artificial conditions from some species of fish, in this case bocia macracantha.
Exactly so – we did everything we could, lit the sun, created a microcosm with the appropriate physicochemistry, even the underwater current did not forget, and the fish know, fat on your food fatten up, and do not think about any spawning. So, you and I have taken into account not everything that is present in the places of natural habitat of this species and affects their instinct to reproduce.
Maybe it is you, dear reader, who will be more observant than all those who have gone down this path before you. And will be able to achieve spawning from your favorites, recreating the very missing component of the environment, which we have not even thought about. Maybe it is strengthened or vice versa weakened magnetic field of the Earth, which has a certain value only in the habitat of this bocia, or maybe something else?
Stimulation of the pituitary gland
Well, for now, to get offspring from this fish in artificial conditions along with all of the above fish still do pituitary injections, which are carried out in a fractional way. True such a procedure for the average amateur is very problematic.
Such interference in the hormonal background of fish gives its results. Spawning takes place.
The fish should then be removed from the spawning area. Hell machine with a propeller can be turned off and turn on aeration. And it should be provided by several atomizers, evenly distributed throughout the aquarium. After about a day from fertilized eggs appear larvae, After four days they turn into fry and now they should begin to feed. Feed can be nauplii cyclops and artemia, small rotifers. Obligatory additions of plant food. You can give very finely chopped, scalded with boiling water lettuce.
By about one month of age, the fry reach a length of approximately 15 millimeters. Gradually, they are transferred to larger food types and transferred to larger growing tanks. Around the third week, you can start to gradually lower the temperature to a comfortable temperature for adult fish.
Here we are with you and got acquainted with another representative of underwater spaces – botsia macracantha.