Austrofundulus guajira male

Austrofundulus species don't come up too often, even at dedicated killifish auctions - so I was pleasantly surprised to purchase a pair at the 2007 BKA convention.

Like many South American annuals, they are generally brown fish, but with some very subtle iridescent colours too. The tail of the male flashes between yellow and blue - getting a photograph that captures the delicate beauty of a fish in motion is next to impossible.

I'd not kept Austrofundulus guajira before, so I read up a bit about them. The males can be a bit aggressive to the females apparently. I set them up in a 12"x12"x18" - fairly sparsely set up: filter, tub of peat to spawn in, water sprite and java moss.

The advice I had read was to keep them together for short periods only - just to allow spawning. I initially separated the pair every evening, the female's caudal fin did get nipped a bit, but this only seemed to happen when the fish were first put together each day - keeping the fish apart was actually making life harder on the female!

Austrofundulus guajira female

After a few days I decided to stop removing one fish, which was a good move; now the pair happily spend their day hanging out together. I have never seen the female attempt to hide!

These fish are certainly hungry eaters. They lunge at their dinner - whatever it is - even jumping out to get food I haven't quite put in yet

They are being fed a diet of whiteworms, small slugs, flake, fruit flies and redworms. I would imagine, by the amount they eat, and the vigour with which they eat, that these fish will be growing for some time!