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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So thanks to Uncle Sam, I could finally afford some synodontis multipunctatus. I headed to a shop I hoped to have some and came out smiling from ear to ear, all he had was Wild Caught(I know, what a shame) I purchased 6 of them around 3" for $168(don't tell me if I was overpriced, thats irrelevant) After getting home, taking extra care to acclimate them properly, and do a 50% w/c, I added the synos to a dark tank. That was around 4 days ago and I'm wondering when they should be coming out during the day? Should I be worried about them never shoaling like I've read/ been told about? If it hasn't been long enough, about how long should I wait before I get worried? I have always read that 6 was enough to get them to play out in the open during the lights on period, am I wrong? I thank thats all for right now, If I have any other questions regarding these beautiful cats in my Malawi tank, I'll be sure to ask, Thanks in advance.
 

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Tank raised would probably come out a little more each day with full activity within a month.

Wild caught may need more of a quarantine period to rid them of parasites and get them accustomed to eating their first non-wild food. Were they eating at the LFS?
 

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i have 11 wild caught in a 180 gallon. it took them about three weeks before they would come out during the day now there are always a couple out at a time and they all come out when its feeding time also if you have lights on your tank try turning them off
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yeah they were eating NLS(which I feed) and some flake at the LFS. I've seen them eat when pellets float towered their cave. The owner also told me they had been there for at least a month, so I wasn't too concerned about quarantine. I figured tank raised would be more quick to come out, Just wasn't sure how long it would take wilds to adjust to an aquarium filled with unfamiliar fish. Thanks for the reply, looks like its more waiting.
 

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I have 9 of them that I have had for a few years now. 5 from the original 6 and 4 that were born in the tank and are now nearly as big as the original adults.

They hide all the time and only come out when there is food or to bother my cichlids when they are breeding.

Andy
 

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Mine are out all day long...more than the cichlids even. :thumb:
 

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My tank bred multipuncs didn't like coming out when they were the only fish in a quarentine tank, and it still took a couple weeks after putting them in with my mbuna before they were out and about. Now they swim around all the time, happy little kittie fish. :fish:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
DJRansome said:
Mine are out all day long...more than the cichlids even. :thumb:
Thats what I'm hoping for.
 

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synodontis petricola may have been a better choice if you want to see them all the time they look similar a little darker and smaller i just picked up a bunch of juvineiles and they swim all over the tank non stop
 

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It can be a bit unpredictable...

I've kept them in a number of tanks, both wild-caught and tank raised (bred in my tanks). In only one tank were they reclusive, and those became very out and about once moved to another tank. Trying to find some rhyme & reason to it, I found the shyness was not really dependent on tankmates. The tank the shy ones (tank bred) were in was probably the brightest of the tanks I've kept them in. Therefore I for a time thought it might be the amount of lighting - they definitely don't like it too bright. But - I had kept my wild-caught's in that same tank previously, when I had first gotten them, and they were not reclusive, even at first. The only remaining difference was the amount of rockwork. The setup the reclusive ones were in had so much rockwork in it that there wasn't much incentive for the catfish to show themselves. Don't get me wrong, they definitely need and appreciate some cover, but not too much, if you want to see them.

Two things to suggest trying then - if the tank is very bright, try making it less so; and if the rockwork is really built up, try removing some. I know, that's a bit touchy due to the mbuna; just something to consider.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
First I'd like to thank you all for the replies. I've been trying to keep my rock-work to a minimum for my Electra, and Borleyi, The labs were only supposed to be temporary... and still might be. I'm considering moving them out and adding a peacock species, at witch point I would reduce my rocks. After your suggestion, Afishionado, I'm probably going to take that route. Now about the lights, I'm currently using 2 48" t8s, one actinic and the other 10,000. Would you thank this to be too much light? I've been watching them a little here and there, and I'll see 2 or 3 of them come out from time to time, so my first course of action is going to be to wait a few weeks and go from there. Thanks again for the informative information.
 

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I don't think that is theoretically too much light, however ime there can be a very significant difference in the brightness of 2 48" T8's depending on the brand & bulbs, and the quality of the fixture & (especially) the reflector. I've got power compact bulbs rated at twice the wattage in a commmonly sold fixture (won't name the brand here) that don't look nearly as bright (or nice, imo) as a 48" T8 powerglo/aquaglo combo under a high quality parabolic reflector. (The latter incidentally is the lighting on the tank that was hit-and-miss with the synos - as mentionned, don't know for certain the lighting was the issue though). Try obersing when the room is not too bright and you turn the tank lights off, to see if they then become more active - that may give you some clues as to whether tank brightness is part of the issue.

If you've already cut down somewat on the rockwork and there is some open space then I might not go overboard there - you still do need a good amount of it.

One more thing - if you are overfeeding then they may not be as active about looking for food - could also contribute to their staying hidden a lot.

If all of the above is in order then I guess just give it time! Good luck.
 

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I'm going to give my experience, not to say the other members do not have valid points, but rather to say "this did not happen to me, so try it both ways".

My multipunctatus are out and about even more than my lucipinnis.

Some of my syno tanks are planted with brilliant lights and I have noticed no impact on their activity.

My multi tank is half filled with rocks and the multi's like to swim constantly over, around and through the piles.

I do put special syno caves in all my syno tanks...maybe it makes them more comfortable knowing they have a retreat. Under the rock piles there is a terra cotta saucer sunk in the substrate mostly covered by a slate tile.

I also have lots of fish in the tanks so there is comfort in numbers.

I'd just give them time. A lot of the activity seems to be spawning related so maybe it increases with age, but I raised the lucipinnis from one inch and cannot remember a time when they were not active all day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I am very interested in your special "syno caves" care to elaborate? Maybe show us a picture? I understand it like this; there is a "terra cotta" saucer(what is the significance of "terra cotta") in the sand, then there is a slate tile on top of that, I assume this would create a very thin crevice between the saucer and the tile, then there is rocks over top of it right? Yea I need a picture if you wouldn't mind.
 
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