Fundulopanchax sjoestedti ‘Niger Delta’

Fundulopanchax sjoestedti Niger DeltaI wasn’t planning on buying any fish at the members auction of the BKA 2007 convention – I was saving myself for the show auction the next day – but then a fish I didn’t spot earlier on came up, and what a magnificent pair. Fundulopanchax sjoestedti ‘Niger Delta’, starting price £10 – right across the room flashes of blue and orange were telling me this was a special fish. I raised my hand.

Fundulopanchax sjoestedti Niger DeltaPhotographing this fish has been a challenge. The light that shines on them can completely alter colouration; the use of a flash gives a clearer, more defined image (top picture), however lacking a lot of the blue. Without, the colours, particularly amount of blue, depend on the flourescent tubes above. In a dimly lit tank the fishes colour changes as the fish gets nearer or further from the light source. The two pictures above were taken a few seconds apart.

2 weeks on, and how are the doing? Well I set them up in a 12″x12″x18″ tank, subdued light, with two very large mops, filter, and nothing else. They are just in my standard water – reverse osmosis, hardened with JBL Aquadur to a hardness of 300ppm, and at a temperature of 23-25 degrees C.

They’re pretty hungry, wolfing down a mix of whiteworms, bloodworms, flake, and the odd large redworm. Egg production was slow at first, though has picked up now. The first batch of eggs I picked were placed on peat but all fungused. Are these fish just that little bit too old?

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