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in the aquarium. The process used to trigger a spawning event is also typical of other Corydoras spp. Corydoras semi-aquilus can be stimulated to spawn by providing them with excellent water quality and a diet rich in protein and frozen insect larvae, increasing water circulation and by performing a series of daily 25 to 75 percent water changes with water a few degrees cooler than that in the aquarium.

The eggs of these fish are quite large and can be transferred to a cage net in the aquarium to prevent them from being eaten. Healthy eggs should hatch in four to five days, and the fry should be offered microworms and newly hatched brine shrimp two or three days later. If kept in the cage net in the spawning aquarium, the water quality needs to remain high so that food can be^lpt at fchigh density around the young fish without fouling the water.

Getting Started Right

The young fish grow rather slowly, but quickly graduate to crushed tablet food and can be moved to a larger aquarium for growing out. Initially, fry are almost translucent and have a rather elongate body and a rounded snout. As they grow, the pigment increases and the snout becomes more pronounced. At four to five months of age, they begin to resemble their parents in appearance, behavior and appetite.

If you are looking for an attractive, interesting and gutsy Corydoras for a tough tank of cichlids, characins and other catfish, you could do a lot worse than C. semiaquilus. If you're lucky enough to come across a batch at your local fish store, I wholeheartedly recommend that you snatch them up. U

Michael Hardman studies the evolution of catfish. During his research, he has collected fish throughout the Americas, Europe and Southeast Asia.He maintains live fish in aquaria to observe their behavior and monitor pheno-typic changes as they mature and reproduce.

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