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Discussion regarding only South American Cichlid species. (Oscars, Geophagines, Discus, Apistogramma, Green Terrors, Angels, Severums, Pikes, etc.)
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Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Sat Nov 02, 2013 8:55 am

Thx for checking by Joe...its appreciated, your input is extremely valuable. It is still only early days for the fish only being day three....they are all doing great by the looks of it but they arent feeding on anything I put in to the tank at feeding time.
However I purposely only have one bn pleco and no other bottom dwellers so I am putting bottom dwelling foods in at feeding times which for most part lie on the bottom but they are getting eaten at some point Im just never around to see it ;)

The little fish are doing the eartheater thing and pecking away at the sand all day.....will they be getting enough from the sand?? ..... I am feeding my high quality flake to rest of the tank and the cupido are getting a little mix of algae wafer, brine shrimp tablet and catfish pellets.

And yes Ill post more pics of the fish in my group...and for sure I will be getting some more :)

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Sat Nov 02, 2013 3:55 pm


This is three different fish Joe :)

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Sun Nov 03, 2013 4:38 am

hi, good to hear they all sifting away, that's them looking for food, offer them lots of different foods to encourage them to eat, as they sift the sand they are removing the food, regular small feeds are good as they are not really a fish that stuffs itself in one go, they pick away all day long, you will know that they are feeding well when you start to see them produce waste, keep an eye out for that as it will be an indication of how much they are eating and their general health.
one of my favourite foods for young cichlids of that size is lobster eggs, once they get a taste for them they will devour them and they are great for pumping them up and filling them out a bit.
getting greedy now. how about a little video!
off the top of my head here is a list of the foods that my fish are getting at the moment
earthworm flakes
tetra prima
new era mini pellets
live daphnia, Cyclops, chopped earthworms and cherry shrimp
frozen lobster eggs and frozen Mysis shrimp
decapsulated brine shrimp eggs, ( just soak them for ten minutes and syringe them into the tank)
I think they eat better than me sometimes!

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Mon Nov 04, 2013 10:08 am

more excellent info Joe........ok so I have another three coming Friday which gives me the eight as I previously planned :)
Im uploading a little video as I type this so Ill post it as soon as :)
Great to hear your ideas and get feedback Joe
Cheers mate :)

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Mon Nov 04, 2013 3:34 pm

There we go Joe...short but gives you a better idea of where there at, any feedback is always welcome..good or bad :)

And there is the sound of my phone at the end so dont go answering your phone ;)

**another three coming on Friday to give me the 8 strong colony**

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Mon Nov 04, 2013 3:45 pm

I have currently a pair of angels in the tank with em but I may move them on and add a shoal of mid/top level fish like pencilfish. The twelve columbians kinda hang around middle with odd nosey around bottom and top ....and the biggest of my algae eaters likes to hang around the cupidos...I think hes become aware that they unearth some edibles..lol
I have noticed too however that the angel pair helps bond the little group so yeah haven't made my mind up either way ....sometimes a little turf war keeps everybody's mind on the job so to speak..lets a cichlid be a cichlid....maybe :)

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Tue Nov 05, 2013 5:27 am

So really been trying to encourage the growth of my vallisneria and frogbit to give more shade in the tank....before I took tank apart to move it to the stand the surface was covered creating some awesome shade , Im sure it will come back :thumb:

I also added some indian almond leaves into my HOB filter just to add a little extra to the water and sure enough the water has taken on a little yellow tint which looks really nice and this morning the little biotodoma have been having little territorial disputes, one in particular is having a nibble at all the others (will this be dominant male ??)
Im taking this as further good signs that the fish are comfortable and settling into typical colony behaviours.

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Tue Nov 05, 2013 7:49 am

thanks for posting the video, enjoyed watching it.
I would guess now looking at the video that they are hitting the 3 month old mark alright, they are a little bit on the thin side, but that will disappear very quickly now that they are in their permanent home, plenty of small feeds will do the trick, that and plenty of water changes, the giant vallis and the frogbit will also help with the water quality, both are very fast growing plants and will suck up nutrients from the water column, once the vallis takes off it will grow very big giving you the shade you want.
I would suggest not just lights off for a day with the new arrivals but also maybe a juggle about of the existing d├ęcor just before the new cupido are added to the tank, it will disturb the existing five's advantage in the tank and should help the group mix and settle in together
tks again for the updates

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Wed Nov 06, 2013 4:18 pm

Cheers Joe, they have been really goin at it over everyones own little peice of land..lol....alot of colour changing too. Mostly just flaring and chasing but see one lip lock for a few seconds. So without getting my hands in the tank and unsettling stuff too much I am going to put a couple of large coconut shells with large holes in em and just position em in the open area that all the fighting seems to be about. Ill also throw in another beech branch or so to break things up. Thats the plan anyways...heres hoping :)

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Fri Nov 08, 2013 8:01 am

Another three additions in tank today.......should calm things down a bit..the extra few branches and shells seems to have worked. Also noticed alot of waste from my group of five and eating alot better. Made a little wormery out my backyard from a polystyrene fish transit box. Getting food past the tetras isnt easy but hopefully with more confidence the cichlids come up water column a bit to feed also ...Ill keep u updated Joe... (been daily accounts so far, Ill calm down a bit once things settle down....I do get carried away^^) :lol:

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Sat Nov 09, 2013 3:36 am

good stuff! it's good to hear the next 3 arrived, keep an eye on them that no one individual gets picked on, but I would guess they should be ok.
oh an keep the updates coming with a scattering of videos and pictures, always interesting to read

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Sat Nov 09, 2013 1:37 pm

Hi guys, I was reading through the thread, and just noticed that you were keeping the Biotodoma at 25-26 C. You were also commenting on the very slow growth. Just thought I'd let you know, many years ago Ginny Eckstein, a well known cichlid and catfish enthusiast at the time, told me about a group she had in a 240 gallon tank. She said they grew quite rapidly if you kept the temperature at 82-86 F, which translates to about 28-30 C. Weidner gives 26 as a normal temperature for the blackwater species B. wavrini, but does not specify for cupido. However, he does comment that the cupido eggs hatch in two days at 28C. He also describes the habitat for cupido as still, shallow, sandy areas. Places like this tend to stay quite warm, often 3-4C warmer than the deeper channels of the same river or stream.

I kept some B. cupido "Santarem" some years ago, but they were near adult when I got them. Turned out I had all males, a common occurrence with Biotodoma. I kept them around 82 F, and they were very active and even came to the surface to eat. However, they were kept by themselves, and Weidner also comments that more aggressive feeders are not good tankmates for the species.

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Sat Nov 09, 2013 2:48 pm

ah, great to see another keeper of these fish entering into the chat.
I thought I had put to bed the old myth of only males being available, caught, found in aquariums!
I have looked at cupido, both adults and sub adults in aquatic shops over the last 6 months and could always see both sexes, I have yet to see a tank of cupido containing only males for sale
I don't think I don't think I said that they are a very slow growing fish, maybe slow to mature in comparison to some other eartheaters
Yes cupido are found in higher temps, they are a very widespread species and are found throughout the amazon region so are probably found in both higher and lower temps, I keep my young and adults in temps on average 25, dropping drastically with large water changes and rising slightly in very warm weather, the young I kept back that are 7 months old are averaging 8cm in length, theses are growing faster than the original group I bought. maybe one of the factors that can affect the young growing is periods without food? could this knock them back a bit?
All my fish shoot to the surface to feed and feed in midwater when food is added, but they then go back to their sifting habits once the lid is shut on the tank, I would guess that Everlast's fish will do the same as they settle in to their surroundings and become more confident
On the wavrini, I have never kept them so can't really comment

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Sat Nov 09, 2013 4:57 pm

Ah thx for input chromedome......in relation to your last comment joe ..the part about singling out one individual.
They did....the smallest one got a bit of a beating....I think he/she gonna be ok..its hiding behind some plants and is being left alone. I am able to target it with food without grabbing attention of other tankmates. Its smaller than the rest.....looks younger..all head and eyes..hopefully he makes it...cant help but think its a female. There are two dominant fish......one from each group. The three I got have settled far quicker than first grpup exluding the little battered fish....ill post soon with pictures of full group.

Re: Biotodoma Cupido

Sat Nov 09, 2013 7:16 pm

Exactly how are you sexing these cupido? The only visible difference between the sexes that I am aware of are the blue markings below the eye. Males have solid lines, females have spotted patterns. I've never seen these markings clearly on subadult fish. Weidner clearly shows these differences in his book Eartheaters. As far as taking a long time to mature, Weidner reports 18 months from hatching to maturity, which is rather long.

With larger groups it is more likely that both sexes will be found. 30 years ago, you rarely saw more than six in a store at one time, as the cost was high for a relatively colorless fish, and they were usually juveniles. So if you are looking at mature fish, it is possible you will see some females. But there was a definite preponderance of males in the species, which in the past made it almost impossible to find females in the hobby. I haven't even seen any in the Midwestern US in 10 years or more.

As for the temperature issue, they have the same habitat throughout their range, so the temperature is going to be consistently warm. The range is actually quite narrow but very long, along the main course of the Amazon, with a couple of extensions along tributaries. There is a distribution map in Weidner. There is also the fact that some fish identified in the hobby as cupido were likely sp. "Guyana", as many fish were exported from there 40-50 years ago before they shut down the export business to protect many extirpated populations.
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