Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

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Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby dennysfishroom » Thu Jan 08, 2015 11:50 am

I’m happy to report that I’ve had a successful (free-swimming fry) spawn from my Coptodon bythobates (Tilapia bythobates). I picked up a group of four juveniles this past fall, and they’ve been growing up in my tanks ever since. It appears that I’m going to have 2 pairs when all is said and done. I had been keeping them in a 30 long aquarium, but it seemed as though they might be getting a little aggressive (especially the proven pair), so I moved them to a 135 gallon tank just before going to Iowa for Christmas/New Years. When I got back, the pair was definitely in charge of the tank, constantly chasing the other pair (?) away from one end of the tank. I wasn’t sure what to look for as far as a spawning site, but I did have several flower pots and gravel on the bottom. Once we got back, I did notice several small “pits” in the gravel, but never did see any eggs. When I checked the tank this morning I found probably 50-100 free-swimming fry being guarded by the parents.

Coptodon bythobates are endemic to Lake Bermin in the Cameroon. At this point that is the only place they have been found. Lake Bermin is a crater lake with a volcanic caldera, and is only around 800 yards across. The fish is listed on the IUCN Red List as Critically endangered due to environmental pollution and sedimentation, as well as possibility that the lake could “burp” CO2 causing a lack of oxygen in the water.

This is a very attractive little cichlid, having a green body with red on the underside, especially when in breeding condition. One unusual feature is that as the fish mature, they develop what looks like white lipstick on their mouths. When I first saw that, I was worried that they had a mouth fungus, but it has proven to be part of their natural coloration. Most of the pictures I’ve seen haven’t done justice to how colorful they are, but at some point in the future, I’ll try to take some pictures which will capture their true colors.

Denny Rogers 1/8/2015
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Re: Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby mewickham » Thu Jan 08, 2015 1:07 pm

Awesome! You're finally going to have to break down and clean some glass if you want to take those photos. :)
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Re: Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby dennysfishroom » Thu Jan 08, 2015 1:10 pm

There's a downside to everything. Denny
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Re: Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby SeafariStu » Thu Jan 08, 2015 11:02 pm

I recommend a hammer and chisel to get that process started...
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Re: Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby dennysfishroom » Wed Jan 14, 2015 3:36 pm

Apparently the parents don't like other fish around when they've got young. They killed one of the others in the tank, and the remaining one is hiding out. That's in my 7 foot, 135 gallon tank too. Fry seem to be doing well so far. Pretty soon I'm going to have to start thinking about getting the fry out of that tank. Denny
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Re: Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby mewickham » Thu Jan 15, 2015 10:36 am

You probably need to get that other adult out, too!
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Re: Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby dennysfishroom » Sat Jan 17, 2015 11:41 am

Easier said than done. Denny
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Re: Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby dennysfishroom » Thu Jan 22, 2015 11:15 am

Had another spawn of the C. bythobates last night. I won't know for a few days how many fry I've got, but at least it won't be a surprise when I see the free-swimming fry. I've got a little more detail at dennysfishroom.com
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Re: Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby dennysfishroom » Sun Jan 25, 2015 5:19 pm

The eggs disappeared overnight Thursday, but the parents are still being very protective of the area around their pits. I don't know if the spawn is gone or whether they are just hiding the wrigglers really good. I probably won't know for sure until Tuesday or Wednesday to see if the fry become free swimming. Stay tuned. Denny
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Re: Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby sskruzr » Sun Jan 25, 2015 7:35 pm

some of the satanoperca species actually cover the fry with sand, just an fyi
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Re: Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby dennysfishroom » Sat Jan 31, 2015 1:57 pm

The second spawn was a dud, but they have started to pay attention to each other again, and today I noticed a really big pit had been dug in the gravel. Hopefully, the next spawn will be successful. BTW - I will be bringing fry to the February meeting to get the BAP points. Be prepared to bid if you're interested in trying these fish. Denny
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Re: Spawning Report - Coptodon bythobates

Postby dennysfishroom » Tue Feb 03, 2015 10:00 am

I was able to watch the pair spawning yesterday. It didn't seem quite as choreographed as some I've seen, and possibly seemed a little rougher. Today I don't see the pair defending any particular area, so I'll just have to wait to see if it was a successful spawn. Denny
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