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Old 11-07-2014, 08:19 PM   #1
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can a fish spawn so much it dies ?

I had an amazing pair of Daisy Rice fish, and they started spawning last June. I'm fairly sure she spawned every day since then, though I have not yet seen any fry. The tank conditions may not be right for the fry, and I am so far from being any kind of expert on rearing eggs. This species carries its eggs around the vent and ventral fin for hours before they drop them or brush them, onto plants. So it's easy to tell when she has spawned.

But I got a book on breeding fish, and it mentions separating fish who spawn continuously for a week or so every so often so the female isn't exhausted by it. Wish I'd known that sooner. I have not seen my female in nearly a week now and I'm fairly sure she has died.

Shrimp in the tank, they'd have made short work of her if she did die. No body I can see, nothing on the floor, so she didn't jump. They aren't a jumping type anyway, spending most of their time in mid to low levels of the tank. They don't even surface feed.

If I can ever get more of them, I will try again, but I'd hate to think she laid eggs to the point she just wore herself out. Anyone have this happen with a fish ?

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Old 11-08-2014, 11:26 AM   #2
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Old 11-08-2014, 12:00 PM   #3
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How old was the fish? It may have died of old age. Many small fish have rather short life spans, which can be further shortened by keeping them in warmer water. Annual killies are a good example of this, but it also applies to others. Fish such as guppies, when kept at temps in the 80F range will grow quickly to full size but will die after about 2 years. Keep them in an unheated tank, and you can add a year.
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Old 11-08-2014, 07:24 PM   #4
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I keep the tanks relatively cool, no heaters. Because I had to keep them in my bedroom, warmest room I have, there were some days when temps got a bit over 80F, but I had fans running nearly all the time, and temps usually were around 70 - 72.

This pair of fish were juvies when I got them sometime last fall, and didn't start spawning until they reached adult size, early this summer. They may have been a year old by now.

Once they began spawning, as nearly as I could observe, she spawned every day, about a dozen eggs at a time. I put them in their own tank, 5G, with a ton of moss and ambulia in hopes of getting some live fry. Fed them a fair bit of live food, microworms, black worm, brine shrimp, some frozen foods and Hikari semi sinking mini pellets.
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Old 11-14-2014, 06:13 PM   #5
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The main question was if a fish can spawn so much it dies → yes, it can! Doesn't happen that frequently among fish. But yes, it definately can...
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Old 11-14-2014, 08:50 PM   #6
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I think this may be what happened. The female did spawn daily, from early June until the beginning of November.. and then quite suddenly vanished, though the male is alive and well. Since he had only one female, his attentions would have been all on her, which may not have helped. I haven't been able to find any more of this species to give him a proper size harem.

There are shrimp in the tank, so I think she was likely eaten after she died.. there is certainly no body anywhere I can find. In future, should I be able to get more of these fish, I'd separate the females periodically to give them a break, should they show signs of this continuous spawning behaviour.

Bummer losing her. Though just the other day I did see one live fry. Only saw it once and am hoping it's still in there and alive.
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Old 11-15-2014, 02:48 PM   #7
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The shrimp wouldve been any eggs and fry that they found thats prob why you didnt get any fry

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Old 11-15-2014, 04:48 PM   #8
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I'd wondered that myself. I have asked about that particular detail on a couple of forums, and the replies I got led me to think that cherry shrimp don't eat fish eggs. I certainly haven't observed them eating any type of fish eggs, though I can't deny it's possible they might. They sure don't bother snail eggs, which would be easy enough for them to get at, not even the Spixi snail eggs, which are laid in a soft, loose mass that would be very easy for shrimp to grab.

And while they certainly do eat dead fish or dead anything else, I've never seen one prey on live fish, even tiny ones. I have seen some other shrimp species that are larger and have bigger claws catch the odd small fish, but not cherry shrimp, They have such tiny claws.. and the ones in this tank are juvies, only about a half inch long. Since I have now seen one live fry, it appears they're quite able to swim, so these little shrimp would be unlikely to catch one unless maybe it was motionless for some time. Possibly when they first hatch they might be at risk ?

That said, should I have the good fortune to get more Daisy Rice fish, I'll be sure to have a fry tank set up that won't have anything at all in it other than plants and maybe a snail for clean up. I might just try to get the eggs from the females while they are still lugging them around, assuming they are obliging enough to spawn. Then I can try to hatch and raise them in a fry tank from day one.

If I can catch the female after she lays, in a deli container or something similar and put some moss in with her, with any luck the eggs will end up on the moss and then she can go back into her tank. Or maybe a breeder net or box full of moss, that I can place her in, if I catch her in a cup. Don't want to try netting a female with eggs as it might damage them, as the eggs are always stuck to the vent area for some time after they're first laid.

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