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Spawning Corydoras caudimaculatus


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#1 Bwhiskered

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 12:15 AM

Spawning Corydoras caudimaculatus
by Charles Drew

The Corydoras caudimaculatus has been a favourite of mine since the first time that I saw it in a picture. They are an attractive species with a lot of speckles and a large black spot at the base of the tail. They grow to about 40mm long according to the information given but mine are larger. They come from Brazil in the main stream of the upper Rio Guapore.
They were not discovered or introduced to the hobby until about 1961.

I first saw these cories at a CAOAC convention that was hosted by the Brant Aquarium Society sometime in the mid 70's. They were brought to the convention by two fellows from Michigan. I have always referred to these fellows as bucket men as the had about ten five gallon pails in their room all with about inch long cories that they claimed to have spawned. At least one of the pails had Corydoras caudimaculatus. Their prices were reasonable and I soon had a bag of six to take home and raise.

Eventually as they matured they were housed in a tank with some Corydoras rabauti. It was not long before the C. rabauti were spawning and I was raising fry. A funny thing started happening which took me a long time to figure out. I would collect eggs one time and the hatch would be good but a spawn a week or two later gave a zero hatch. I never gave it much thought at the time as I was busy and working and was never home when spawning took place. I have since realized that the Caudimaculatus and the Rabauti were taking turns spawning and the Caudimaculatus eggs were the infertile spawns. I had these fish for a number of years and I guess they just eventually passed away. I never saw any for a long time until sometime in the mid 90's I stopped in at The Fish Place in Lancaster Pennsylvania. There as a tank of young wild caught Corydoras caudimaculatus. The price was not cheap but I could not leave without buying six of them.

This time I got somewhat serious about trying to spawn them. Over the next few years I got eggs a good number of times but no luck in getting a hatch. After awhile they went into a catch-all catfish tank and were basically forgotten. Some time around 2005 Paul McFarlane was shutting down his fish room and gave me a number of his cories. In the group were three Corydoras caudimaculatus. It was at that time I did a check and found that I still had three of my own still swimming around and in good condition. This was not surprising as some cories can live and spawn for 20 years or more. I was now determined to succeed in spawning this fish. For several seasons they would spawn and I would get mainly infertile eggs. Occasionally I would get a few to hatch but the fry would die almost as soon as they hatched. Each time I appeared to have failed I learned a little bit more of what was going wrong. Finally in 2011 I accidentally raised two fry. I only had two fry hatch and they were taking up a pan that I needed for other cories so I sucked them up in an eye dropper and squirted them into a tank with some Orange Australe fry. About eight weeks later I went to move the Australe to a larger grow out tank and discovered the two fry nearly 3/4" long. They got moved into the tank with their parents and left to grow for the next fall spawning season.

The fall of 2012 I got right down to business. The two fry had matured into two young males which was excellent as the group was female heavy. I had always picked the eggs from the mop and placed them in a pan with mainly RO peat water and hatched them on the basement floor. This had been the only way I had ever gotten a hatch. However no matter how careful I had been they always died as soon as I started to change water. Since with the new young more fertile males I was getting better hatches and therefore making my research into problems easier to study. Next I started taking water from the parents tank with the eggs. The water was half RO sometimes and made dark or slightly acid with Alder Cones. I started hatching the eggs in the pan on the shelf where most of my cory eggs get hatched. The eggs hatched well enough but the fry would only last a week or so after you started to feed them. As the cory season got into full swing there was no room on the shelf for their pan of eggs so I placed it on the top of a tank where it was easy to see. The eggs this time hatched well and continued to do so with a change of water from the parents tank everyday. This went on for a couple of weeks and then I started to lose fry. What could have started going wrong? I did not have that answer at the time so an idea jumped into my head I have a fry saver full of King Tiger Pleco fry so why not just dump them in and see what happens. I did not know how these cories would do in 85 degree water but I soon found out that they loved it.

With the continual flow of water in the fry saver and a good supply of baby brine shrimp the fry flourished and when the young plecos got moved to another grow tank the nine cories that are now an inch long got to be set fee with the King Tiger breeders. Soon I had another spawn of the Caudimaculatus and again I placed the pan on top of a German Ram tank and hatched them in the water that they were spawned in and added a drop of acriflavine and an air stone as usual. From this spawn 16 fry hatched and one died soon after. This time I gave them small water changes with water from the King Tiger tank. The changes grew larger and soon they got a 90% water change twice a day. The first feedings two days after hatching were micro worms. After several days live baby brine shrimp were fed twice a day. I wanted to put them in the fry saver but I was waiting for the Tigers to spawn again and the fry saver would be in the way. While I was waiting I continued my daily routine and the fry continued to grow and do well. They were better than a half inch long when I found one fry dead. I knew that I had some King Tiger fry about ready to come out of the cave so I decided to move them to the fry saver and also add the cory fry. In doing this I found that several other fry had become slightly clamped by a bacterial infection. I lost no more and they soon cleared up with the continual water change that they got from the fry saver.

I soon discovered that the problem was a biofilm that formed on the bottom of the pan. The next spawn I will change and wash the pan every few days. This cory has been a forty year challenge which has finally ended in success. I have heard of a number of cory breeders that have given up on this fish completely. Maybe if they read this article they will try one more time. Another thing that I learned is although they need a cold water change to trigger a spawn the adults and fry are happy in 85 degree water.

#2 Dis

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 02:43 AM

Good article and interesting story. Thanks for sharing, congrats.

#3 CanadaPleco

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 01:35 PM

and a pic of what they look like.
Corydoras_caudimaculatus.jpg

Rich

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#4 Bwhiskered

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 10:13 PM

One of the nicest cories but rarely seen.

#5 matti2uude

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 01:21 AM

Once again, nice work!

#6 Lisachromis

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Posted 11 April 2013 - 10:53 PM

Is that your pic Rich?

#7 CanadaPleco

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Posted 11 April 2013 - 11:53 PM

No, I just googled and posted one so people could see what they look like.

Rich

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