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FOERSCHI KILLIFISH (Nothobranchius Foerschi)

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Nothobranchs (genus Nothobranchius) belong to the most colorful species of freshwater fish. This is true at least for the males, as female nothobranchs are all more or less unicolored.

Nothobranchs are typical seasonal fish. They outlive the desiccation of their habitat with eggs that can survive without water almost unlimited. Nothobranchius furzeri is world famous for it is the fish with the shortest livespan at all: between hatching from the egg and natural death are only 3 months! This is the reason why N. furzeri is in focus of science: medics and biologists study the fish as a model organism to understand the mechanisms of aging.

Most species of Nothobranchius, however, live much longer and usually they can reach at least an age of 9 months in aquaria. Nothobranchius foerschi is a very beautiful species that originates from Tanzania. Males can reach around 5 cm in length, females stay smaller. Naturally fish that are as specialized as nothobranchs do not fit in usual community tanks. The most beautiful picture is to see several males together in a one-species tanks. Nothobranchs are solitary fish and so the males are displaying every now and then. Males and females should be kept together only for spawning. They are bottom spawners. The eggs need only around 6-10 weeks after drying out to hatch. So it is possible to have the whole year through these nice fish in your home aquaria.

Due to their strong metabolism nothobranchs need extra strong food. The different types of frozen and live food are very suitable. Plants are ignored. Regarding water temperature: there are differing philosophies among killifish enthusiasts. In nature, temperatures can change very quickly. So the fish are adopted to a wide range of temperatures: 18 – 30°C. However, when kept in the upper or the lower end of this range for longer times they become usceptible for diseases. On the other hand it is a fact that the fish can have a longer live when kept relatively cool. Nothobranchs are basically undemanding regarding the other water parameters, but it is best to keep them in medium hard, slightly alcalic water, for otherwise they are very usceptible for Piscinoodinium.