Lake Tanganyika Species • Soaking food in Metro and other questions

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Soaking food in Metro and other questions

Postby sneakypete » Thu Apr 24, 2008 4:50 pm

Hey guys. Pretty new to this part of the forum so be nice. :wink:

I've been out of the hobby for about 25 years and will be setting up a 125 in the next few weeks. I'm currently sitting on the fence about doing either a Tropheus tank or a community African, although the Troph bug is starting to bite my ass again. FWIW, I've kept T. Dubosi and T.Bemba in the past and never ran into problems although I didn't have them for very long.

Anyhoo, I'm been reading this section of the forum for awhile looking out for best practices. One which I find interesting is soaking food in metro upon the first days after receiving a colony of fry. Sorry for the stupid question but how is this done? Do you simply put a few drops in a cup of water, throw in some flakes/pellets, wait a minute and throw it into the tank? Is there a risk of overdose this way? I've never worked with metro before so this sounds kind of radical.

Second question: I'm thinking of ordering from Reserve Stock and they are advertising Ndole Red as one of the "brightest" red species they've had yet. The photo looks great. But so does the Moliro. And of course so does the Lufubu (not that picture of RS so much but others I've seen have blown me away). In your experiences, between the Ndole and the Moliro, which has the tendency to stay reddest no matter what?

Last question. I'm planning on using a natural medium tan coloured gravel for substrate (bright white has never really done it for me). I get the impression that Troph tend to show better colour with a blue backround rather than black. If I'm going with any of the above types, does anyone strongly recommend the blue over the black for maximum colour on the fish? Will this make a big difference? I much prefer the black, but if I'm blowing cash on a colony, I can live with the blue if it will make a difference.

Thanks in advance,

Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 12:00 pm
Location: Toronto

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Re: Soaking food in Metro and other questions

Postby 24Tropheus » Thu Apr 24, 2008 5:41 pm

You can use Seachem Focus to help bind the Metro or CLOUT to the food. ... Focus.html
Simply soaking say NLS in as strong as you can get it dissolved Metro (warm to help it dissolve) works OKish too.
I have Metro tablets from a Vet (desighned for ingestion whole by larger animals) but in other countries I believe you can buy it powdered. (Or use Clout). Many flake just disintigrate when soaked. TA aquaculture spirulina flake for some reason does not and works OKish.

With Sp Red they can look pretty unimpressive over Tan sand and dark substrates.
To show their colours a lighter sand is often used.
Crushed coral works fine for me and is I think easier to keep clean than play sand.
Pool filter sand is something I am yet to try.
Tropheus like to play with sand and ingest some when they feed.
I think this can only be good for them as they injest a lot of this stuff in the wild and may even self treat mild stomach/digestive problems this way.

On the question of Red in Moliro vs Ndole. I have Ndole. :thumb:

Background I like it to match and look like the rocks and substrate I use.
Never tried blue or black or green or any of those colours.
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Postby 24Tropheus » Thu Apr 24, 2008 6:44 pm

I have lost new Tropheus using Propholactic Treatment like this.
I have had no deaths in new Tropheus without it.
But on the whole I think it helps reduce the likely hood of bloat in newly shipped/transfered fish.
It is hardly new or revolutionary, Metro been used propholacticaly for at least 5 years. :wink:

If the water is not fine and cycled, they will prob die whatever you do.

I do not like to see fry shipped or transfered, I think too large a proportion dies whatever you do.
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Postby sneakypete » Fri Apr 25, 2008 9:48 am

I still find it almost baffleing to read the different opinions/experiences with this species. When I kept tanks 25 years ago, I had a colony of 12 juvenile Bemba in a 65 gallon. I added the fish to a new, uncycled aquarium, never treated the water for chlorine, I fed them frozen brine shrimp and veggie flakes every day and never lost a fish. Same for Dubosi. I was like 15 at the time, and while I would never take those chances again, I still find some of the precations people suggest a little surprising. Then again, I've never had fish shipped before.

Thanks for the feedback and I'd love to hear any more opinions you guys can share.

Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 12:00 pm
Location: Toronto

Postby lloyd » Fri Apr 25, 2008 10:43 am

i've kept plenty of tropheus before moving on to petrochromis and other bigger fish. i still have a small colony of red belly, and a nice working group of wild annectens. some of my previously kept variants arrived 'bullet proof', easy to care for with no losses, while others wasted away faster than i could contemplate rescue options. as a result of my experiences, i consider 'source' and 'time spent disorganized' to be the most important issues when buying tropheus. there did not seem to be any consistency to label wild, pond, or tank raised as more (or less) risky. nor was there any consistency with methods of transport.
what i advocate now, for enthusiasts searching for fry of this species in particular, is to source keepers who actually 'keep' their fish. IMHO...the length of time a colony is allowed to establish, is directly proportionate to the survival rates of their progeny.
a similar logic applies for intervals between shipping adults: the less 'middle men' involved, the most direct route to receive, and the less time between intervals seems all too important for success. i would hazard a guess, that there is only so many times a tropheus might tolerate the efforts of recolonization, before stress becomes depression, and wasting becomes imminent.
side note: as for water concerns: we must all agree that quality has 'slipped' over the last two decades, and every/any species drinking from tapped sources, should be more wary of it's inconsistent qualities and/or potential dangers.
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