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PERCHES

By Rhett Butler


NANDIDAE FAMILY
The Nandidae, Nandus, or Leaf fish family are generally small fish with a small head and large mouth. Several species are seen as "oddities" in the hobby for their leaf-like appearance. By using this camouflage, Leaf fish are able to hunt with little detection from their prey. Nandus are found in South America, Southeast Asia, and Africa.


South American Leaf Fish, Barbeled Leaf Fish
[
Monocirrhus polyacanthus
SYN : Monocirrhusmimophyllus
PD : An oval shaped fish with strong lateral compression. The mouth is large and the lower jaw has a pointed extension. The anal and dorsal fins have long bases and are made up of small spines. The coloration is adaptable to the surroundings. Usually the color ranges from orange-yellow to brown with various markings giving this species the appearance of a dead leaf. A transverse line runs through the eye to the belly, while another runs from the mouth, through the eye and to the caudal fin. The third line runs from the eye to first rays of the dorsal fin.
SIZE : To4" (10 cm)
SS : Other Leaf fish
HAB : Inhabits shallow, shore areas with dense vegetation of slow-moving or still water. South America; in the Rio Negro and Guyana.
S :
TANK : A tank measuring 28" (71 cm) with a volume from 20-25 gallons (76-95 L) is adequate. The tank should be well-planted, especially with large leafed plants. Use floating plants should to diffuse the light. The tank should be arranged in dark colors.
WATER : pH 5-6.8 (6.5), 2-10 dH (6), 73-84°F (23-29°C)
SB : A predator that should not be combined with other fishes. However, if combined with others, keep with larger, robust species.
SC : Preferably none. Armored Catfish, Pictus Catfish, Leporinus, Anostomus, Myleus
FOOD : Live; small fish, mosquito larvae, earthworms, aquatic insects, Tubifex , crustaceans
SEX : The females are rounder during spawning season
B : Use a breeding tank with a single pair. The water values should be: a pH of 6.0-6.5; a hardness of 2-4 dH; and a temperature of 77-82°F (25-28°C). The eggs are attached to the underside of large-leafed leaves. The males look after the 300 eggs, fanning them with his fins. The female will be chased by the male, and she should be removed. The young hatch in 60 to 90 hours. Start feeding with small moving food such as Brine Shrimp nauplii. The fry are voracious eaters and will consume their body weight in food daily. The young grow at different rates and periodically must be sorted according to size to prevent cannibalism.
BP : 8. Breeding is difficult.
R : The Leaf Fish waits for its prey amongst leafs of plants, with its head pointing down. The coloration of the fish makes it hard to distinguish from a dead leaf. It approaches the prey using it's transparent pectoral fins which makes the fish almost undetectable. Prey is sucked in when the fish opens its large mouth. These fish have the ability to change colors, so they can camouflage with their surroundings. Take care when disrupting tank furnishings,as this species is very nervous..
DC : 7. This species is somewhat sensitive to water conditions. The Leaf fish is an aggressive predator that requires live foods.

Nandus [
Nandus nandus
SYN : Bedula hamiltonii, Coius nandus, Nandus marmoratus
PD : An oval-shaped fish with an arched back and lateral compression. The first 12 rays of the long dorsal fin are spiny, while the rest are not. The caudal fin is fan-shaped and the mouth is deeply cleft. The body coloration change, although it is generally gray with irregular brown markings. The eye has two brown stripes passing through it: one running from the mouth to the origin of the dorsal fin, and the other running from the throat to the eye. The fins are grayish, also with brown markings.
SIZE : To 8" (20 cm)
SS : Other Leaf fish
HAB : Inhabits swamps, coastal lakes, and rivers in Southeast Asia; Burma (Myanmar), Thailand ,India
S : bottom, middle
TANK : A 36" (91 cm) or 35-45 gallon (132-170 L) tank is suggested. The tank should be densely planted with a cover of floating plants. Use rocks, roots, and wood to create hiding places.
WATER : pH 6.9-8 (7.4), 8-15 dH (12), 73-81°F (23-27°C). A 0.5-1.0% addition of salt is recommended to keep the fish in top condition. Add 4-7.5 Tsp. salt for every 10 gallons (5-10 g/10 L).
SB : A large, predatory fish that will feed on smaller companions at night. The Nandus is best kept in a species tank although can be combined with other large, robust species.
SC : Giant Gourami, Mystus Cats, Knifefish, large barbs.
FOOD :Live; fish, insects, insect larvae , crustaceans, worms
SEX : Difficult to distinguish, males may be darker colored and have larger fins.
B : Use water with a pH from 6.8-7, a water hardness from 6-9 dH, and a temperature from 7-81°F (25-27°C). As many as 300 tiny eggs are scattered. These hatch after two days are ignored by the parents. The fry can be raised on Artemia nauplii.
BP : 9. Breeding is unusual and rarely accomplished.
R : This species is nocturnal.
DC : 7. This predatory species requires a diet of live foods.

Schomburgk's Leaf Fish [
Polycentrus schomburgki
SYN : Polycentrus tricolor
PD : A stocky, high-backed fish with lateral compression. The body is oval-shaped and the caudal fin is fan-shaped. The anal and dorsal fins have long bases with short, spiny rays. The coloration is variable depending on mood, conditions, and surroundings. Generally the body is dark brown with random dark and light markings. Three lines runs from the eye. The fins are brownish.
SIZE : To 4" (10 cm)
SS : Other Leaf fish
HAB : Inhabits shore areas slow-moving or still water having heavy vegetation in South America;Trinidad, Guyana, and Venezuela
S : bottom, middle
TANK : A tank measuring 20" (51 cm) with the capacity of 10 gallons (39 L) is sufficient. A tank arranged in dark colors with a cover of floating plants is particularly important to this species. Follow other recommendations under M. polyacanthus.
WATER : pH 6.3-7.2 (7.0), 8-20 dH (10), 72-79°F (22-26°C)
FOOD : Live; small fish, mosquito larvae, earthworms, aquatic insects, crustaceans, Tubifex
SB : This solitary species is peaceful towards equal and larger sized species. This species is predatory towards smaller companions. This Leaf fish is nocturnal.
SC : Armored Catfish, Leporinus, Anostomus, Angelfish, Doradids, Loricarids, Loaches.
SEX : The females are rounder during spawning season and generally lighter in color.
B : Use water with the following value S : a pH of 6.0-7.0, a water hardness of 18-20 dH,and a temperature of 82-86°F (28-30°C). They spawn in a rocky cave, and the eggs are attached to the underside of large-leafed leaves. About 600 eggs are laid. After spawning, the male drives off the female, and she should be removed. The father watches and cares for the eggs. The fry hatch in three days and are free-swimming after 7 or 8 days. The fry are voracious eaters and will consume their body weight in food daily.
BP : 8. Breeding is difficult.
R : This species is less aggressive than M. polyacanthus.
DC : 6. This predatory species requires a diet of live foods.