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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Beauty Of The Ghost Catfish

 Beauty Of Animlas | The Beauty Of The Ghost Catfish |The Ghost Catfish, Phantom Catfish or Ghost Fish (Kryptopterus minor) is an Asian glass catfish. Until 1989, it was considered to be the same as the Glass Catfish (K. bicirrhis), and even today the latter name is commonly seen in the aquarium fish trade. However, the larger K. bicirrhis does not seem to have ever been traded in significant numbers. The type locality from which it was described is the primary stream of the Pinoh River (Sungai Pinoh) at Nanga Saian in West Kalimantan, Indonesia. To locals, both K. minor and K. bicirrhis are collectively known as lais tipis in the Malay language, but when they want to distinguish the two, they refer to the Ghost Catfish as lais kaca.

This is a transparent freshwater catfish with two long barbels. Standard lengths may range up to 8 cm (3.1 in) in nature, but aquarium specimens usually average around 6.8 cm (2.7 in) total length. The head of K. minor is typically darker by comparison. Otherwise, they are transparent and most of their organs are located near the head. They are transparent because, like all catfish, they do not have scales, and they also don't have body pigment. When the light strikes the fish just right, it can create an iridescent rainbow color. If you look at a live Ghost Catfish with a magnifying glass, you can see its heart beating. After death, they turn milky white

Native to western Borneo, these catfish prefer tanks with open swimming areas with a moderate current, and planted areas to provide shelter. Timid and non-aggressive fish, they should always be kept as a group of at least five, and can be kept with other fish species of similar size and temperament. Ghost Catfish are highly sensitive to changes in water quality and pH. The pH should be slightly acidic (around 6.5), water hardness should be low (less than 20, ideally less than 10 °dGH) and the water temperature should be around 25 °C (77 °F). These fish have a reputation for being finicky eaters; they prefer live food such as mosquito (Culicidae) larvae, bloodworms (Chironomidae larvae) and brine shrimp (Artemia), but can be weaned to flake food with time.

Kryptopterus species are different from most other catfish because they are free-swimming and live in the mid- to upper region of the water. Ghost Catfish commonly favor dark places to being out in the open light. A small school of them may hide under elevated rocks, logs, or the shadow of plants. Sometimes, however, one or two may venture out into the open and swim in the upper level of the water. They can be enticed to do this more often if the flow of water in the tank is arranged so that their favorite hiding spots are sheltered, while a gentle current flows in the open areas. 
Thus, they will move in the open especially at feeding time, as they like to go after food drifting in the current. A generous growth of aquatic plants is necessary for their well-being, and swimming plants can filter out overly bright light, which they seem to find unpleasant. Breeding has reputedly been achieved in the aquarium, but is not documented. As it seems, they are bred in numbers in outdoor ponds in Southeast Asia for trade, but details are unknown
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