Nine-headed stickleback


Nine-headed stickleback is another representative of the underwater world inhabiting our native reservoirs. Earlier this fish was kept in aquariums. Very lovingly it describes Zolotnitsky in his book. Nowadays behind the glass of our aquariums do not often meet representatives of local reservoirs. But nevertheless among them there are many species that look no worse than some tropical fish.

As for habits or breeding peculiarities, some species from our reservoirs will give a head start to overseas curiosities. An example of this may be the heroine of our today’s story. Judge for yourself…

Nine-headed stickleback description

The nine-headed stickleback inhabits fresh and brackish waters of our latitudes. This fish is small. On its back there are nine, sometimes ten needles, to which the fish owes its name.

The main color is brownish yellow. The sides of the male are studded with small black dots. In the female these dots merge into transverse lines resembling tiger coloration.


During spawning, the male becomes black like glass covered with candle soot. Only the abdominal needles remain white with a bluish tint.

To keep sticklebacks nine-needle can be equipped with a relatively small aquarium. Thirty liters is enough for a flock of four to five fish. It is important to equip a species aquarium. The fact that all sticklebacks – fish aggressive and nine-neglaya is no exception. Despite their relatively small size, they can spread with any neighbor who can not get away to a safe distance. Therefore, it is necessary to keep in the aquarium only sticklebacks. True and in this case there is no guarantee for peace and tranquility in your indoor reservoir. Fish can quarrel with each other. But the chances of a favorable outcome of these feuds are greater than if they will involve fish of other species.

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The bottom can be covered with sand with a layer of about five centimeters. Moreover, the sand can be taken even marine sand. You only need to wash and boil it properly before using it in the aquarium.

Aquarium landscaping

The best way to green up your underwater corner is with Wallisneria. At the back and side windows it is desirable to plant its bushes thicker. As well well take root here cattail. The water column can be decorated with a few sprigs of elodea.

Water for the content of stickleback nine-needle should have a temperature of 18-20 degrees Celsius. It is also desirable to slightly salt the water. This will prevent the development of fungus to infection, which these fish have a particular propensity. The reaction of water should be close to neutral. Hardness is of no particular importance.

Lighting is better to choose according to the vegetation that you put in the aquarium. Medium intensity light is desirable. In bright light fish lose in coloration.

Nine-headed stickleback feeding.

Feed nine-spined stickleback can be any live feed. They are not lacking in appetite and can even fight among themselves for more fatty moths. After the meal they like to lie on the sand giving digestion of food.


When the time of spawning comes, more often it is the middle of March, the males acquire black coloration. it is associated with the beginning of the functioning of skin glands that secrete a sticky substance with the help of which the male builds into the wall of the nest various twigs and roots of small sizes. The nest is built at the root neck of a bushy plant, such as vallisneria. The nest is located almost at the bottom. It looks like a small muff.

During the period when the male starts building the nest, he may have to be provided with additional building material in the form of small branches of plants and their roots. The male spends from one and a half to two days building the nest. You can watch the process of construction for hours. When the nest is ready. the male goes in search of a female. When he finds a mate to his liking, he invites or drives her to the nest. She lays eggs inside the nest and the male fertilizes them with his milk.

If one female fails to fill the nest completely with eggs, the male invites another female to the nest… then another… and so on until the nest is completely filled with eggs. then another… and so on until the nest is completely filled with eggs. After spawning, the females go about their business, while the male remains on guard at the nest. It is difficult to drive him away from his offspring. He bravely rushes at any object that he thinks may pose a danger to his offspring.

Incubation of eggs and care of fry

Incubation lasts about 12 days. After that, fry come out of the nest in clouds, equipped with a large yolk sac, which stores enough nutrients to feed the fry for another five to seven days. After that, you should start feeding small sticklebacks with live dust, small crustaceans.

This is such an interesting fish stickleback nine-eyed is found in many of our reservoirs. If you want to observe its behavior, I think you will not be disappointed. And if you manage to achieve from her spawning in your aquarium, a lot of pleasant impressions you are definitely provided.

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