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PostPosted: Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:13 pm 
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What effects do extreme droughts have on the Rio Negro angelfish variants/populations?

This 2010 Amazon drought has the Rio Negro at its lowest level since
Quote:
From http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/oc ... ate-change

The drought currently affecting swaths of north and west Amazonia has been described as the one of the worst in the last 40 years, with the Rio Negro or Black river, which flows into the world-famous Rio Amazonas, reportedly hitting its lowest levels since records began in 1902 on Sunday.

and

Quote:
From http://www.npr.org/templates/story/stor ... =130811996

Manaus, in northern Brazil, is where the Rio Negro is at its deepest and where it merges with the Amazon River — meaning some places upstream are nearly completely dry
.



Anyone know what is the situation in Sta Isabel? Is it possible that some areas that used to have angel populations lost them due to drought? Could it be the case in the Casiquiare? If I recall correctly, Heiko mentioned, he did not see/catch any angels there but Ed PuertoAyacucho, did (please correct if wrong info).

Tributaries that have angels could loose them if it is true that some places upstream are nearly completely dry. When rains come back do angels get reintroduced in these tributaries? If so, where do the introductions come from? From the Orinoco-Casiquiare-Uooer RN or from angels migrating upstream? If/when reintroductions occur, does it result in founder effect?

Also, do droughts cause the angels found in the upper Rio Negro to go way down to the extent of eventually entering the Amazon river; supplying the Amazon angel populations with upper Rio Negro angel genes/alleles?

From reports, droughts and flooding are a regular occurance in the Amazon but they are becoming more extreme and frequent.
With more extreme and frequent droughts, how will it affect the upper Rio Negro angel variants/populations if some places upstream are nearly completely dry? Are they still there? Hopefully so, but how big/small is the remaining population?


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 19, 2010 7:57 am 
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Hi Ken. P. altum is found down through the Cassiquiare and into the Rio Negro watershed and the Uppermost Rio Negro. We are not sure where the typicity of the species gives out to that of P. scalare. I can tell you we are involved in a rather long study which pursues to clarify some of things.

By my experience I can tell you, that during a harsh dry season, water levels and current come to a minimum and many times, fish are forced into surviving in confined, sometimes virtually stagnant pools of water where the temperature may be very high in comparison to their typical and preferred habitat. This was in part the reasons for the very high mortality rates we were seeing in P. altum exportations from Colombia after Venezuelan OTF exports were shut down in 2004.

In a worst case scenario (an isolated pool along a riverbed that normally contains flowing water) , D.O. levels will drop considerably and some species will begin to die. The dead fish corpse will decompose and bacteria will proliferate. Yes, the water may be very acid (talking blackwater areas), but this does not alleviate the fishes need for oxygen.

Typically, this may occur, not so severely as the report published by H. Bleher, in the Orinoco. But in May, when the downpours start to flood the area, the fish are shocked by the abundance of food and water refreshment which is what allows them to recover conditions quicly and hence, serves as the main natural spawning triggers.

By studying this...we should have a better idea if what to do to get our fish to spawn.

Make them suffer a bit first...but don't kill them in trying to do so.

No easy feat for altum, heckels and the likes in captivity.

In short... and I can't refer to the Santa Isabel/Rio Negro/Amazon directly, but in the Orinoco basin...drought brings isolation of water bodies, concentration of fish populations, extreme temperatures that affect all other water parameters, especially D.O. which is critical for all life within the water, food sources eventually become depleted and of course, death. The strongest usually make it and...

Here Comes The Rain!

Ed

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2010 6:51 pm 
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Thanks for the reply Ed,

In another forum, Heiko replied as well and

Quote:
From http://www.tbaa.org.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?p=7921#p7921 Re: What effects do extreme droughts have on the Rio Negro a
Hi Ken,

the upper Rio Negro and including St. Isabel, which is above the Equateur line, has not been effected so much form the trememdous drought. It is always completely different from the northern and southern part of the Equateur line, when south is dry, north is full of water. The line runs nearly where the Rio Branco enters the Rio Negro.
So at least for these angels (St. Isabel and up) I think it was not a problem, but for the new varieties/species from Jutai, etc it might have been (I think a big) problem to survive...

See also www.aquapress-bleher.com

best regards

Heiko Bleher


In your recent post
Quote:
From http://www.finarama.com/forum/viewtopic ... 1091#21091 re: Changing water parameters to induce breeding in altums

...
Finally, today, things have changed a lot and if it is true that in the Amazon long drought are becoming more extensive and severe, in the Orinoco it's more the other way around...just too much water for many people to handle... sometimes raining into February and even March. This is just weired. I haven't heard my Mother complaining about the lack of rain for years... on the contrary, they've had serious issues with long flood periods. We owned a hacienda in South Lake Maracaibo until last year (since 1928) but she sold out before the government took it over. Now she runs a small farm I have just South of the City of Maracaibo.
So...I can tell you about rain in Venezuela.
Regards
Ed


From both your replies it appears that even if there is rain in the Orinoco-Casiquiare- upper Rio Negro (URN) it is not sufficient to maintain water flow down river and prevent dry conditions...

Regarding gene flow. It is less likely that angels downstream go upstream and there is a limit; when there are rapids and waterfalls, gene flow can not go up. On the contrary, it is likely that angels can go down.

Quote:
P. altum is found down through the Cassiquiare and into the Rio Negro watershed and the Uppermost Rio Negro. We are not sure where the typicity of the species gives out to that of P. scalare. I can tell you we are involved in a rather long study which pursues to clarify some of things.


Given that the Sta Isabel angel population is intact, will this population provide the "seeds" down river when rains have come back and water levels risen at the middle to lower Rio Negro?

My question earlier: do droughts cause the angels found in the upper Rio Negro to go way down to the extent of eventually entering the Amazon river; supplying the Amazon angel populations with upper Rio Negro angel genes/alleles?

I ask these questions because of the Tapajos angel
Discus-Hans wrote:
From http://www.finarama.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1824 Post subject: Tapajos Angels

Some tapajos angel fish , see the orange and red color in this type

Image

Those are pictures from Hudson, in the season I will bring some in with my Wild Discus shipments. What ya think???

Hans


Image

The Tapajos looks "exactly" like the Sta Isabel. Could they be one and the same angelfish? A population of Sta Isabel that was forced to "migrate" down from the upper Rio negro into the Amazon due to drought (the 1962 and 2005 were quite extreme) and continued to "migrate" until they reached the Tapajos?

Discus-Hans wrote:
Some tapajos angel fish , see the orange and red color in this type

Image

Those are pictures from Hudson, in the season I will bring some in with my Wild Discus shipments. What ya think???

Hans


These Tapajos look exactly like the Sta Isabels at http://www.hustinx-aquaristiek.com/modu ... une%202009

The body shape, the stripes and color are "exactly" the same.

Is it possible that two different angel populations, a far distance away from each other, evolved to look exactly the same? Or was there gene flow? Or was there a mislabelling?

Is there gene flow from the Orinoco - Casiquiare - URN - Amazon? Is the "cline" an evidence for gene flow?


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2010 11:44 pm 
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Hi Ken. As to the relation between he St Isabel and Tapajos populations I can't give a valid opinion because I have never owned or even seen neither in person.
The only opinion I can provide derives from the pictures provided by our members and some others on the internet and some sent to me via email.
My image of the St Isabel is an almost perfect Orinoco Altum with a dense concentration of red spotting on the head, while bar width and other characteristics are virtually altum, I mean I can be perfectly wrong. I discussed this with Paolo several months back, maybe a year already, who was the first to post St Isabels here on the forum and that is the conclusion we came to. Since he owns several of these fish, I like to involve him in St Isabel related discussions (hope he has time to give us some insight).
As to the Tapajos Red, I have mostly studied the images provided by Hudson and Discus Hans as well as the Hustinx website. I think these fish could have more in common with the so called Rio Nanay or Peruvian Altum (P. scalare sp. nanay) than with the St Isabel, though the former lack as much red on the head, but more of a red speckling on the bodies, the bar pattern and color, apart from the head and fins), resembles Tapajos fish.
The red color pattern/distribution and long fins, and to a lesser extent, the supraorbital indention or notch above the mouth are similar to those of St Isabels, but the relative scale size, bar width and intensity is clearly P. scalare, a very beautiful variety it is, but I see them different from the St Isabel type.
If you can show me pics of St Isabels with the red fins as intense as the Tapajos, it would be interesting, but I have not seen such intense red fins (and the first ones I saw were much more yellow than deep orange or red, hence I also all the Tapajos yellow fin).
This bring to my mind that just a few days back, probably in this same thread, I said that if I were to base my opinion on some images I had just seen of the St Isabel, then definitely, I would consider it is a scalare... but then, I can't give an objective opinion.
I think St Isabel and Tapajos share several traits that make them look very much alike, but to me, they are not the same subspecies and I believe they are distant.
To this matter, then we have the possibility of human error, that is, are we positive that the fish are actually coming from where they say they are? It would be ery easy for an exporter or importer to receive Tapajos labeled as St Isabels or viceversa. It's happened with Oinoco and the Rio Negro (False) Altum, it can also happen with Tapajos and St Isabel.

--------------

The Rio Negro System provides about 30% I believe, of the total water of the actual Amazon (downstream of Manaus, that is). I beleive that must not be enough water to salve the Amazon from drought but I feel certain that the St Isabel Pterophyllum and other Upper Rio Negro populations can reseed areas which have suffered drought downstream. Most of the water that feed the Solimoes (The Amazon River upstream of Manaus) comes from Andean Rivers, many of which have glacial origin from the high Andean icepack. The water in these rivers comes very much from rain, but also considerably from snow melt. The Amazon is so, so wide, that the snow melt and the Rio Negro system do not produce enough water to fill the entire river bed.
I have a single question to this... at any point.. is any part of the Solimoes-Amazon not navigable a single day of the year?
I really don't know the answer, but I beleive not. That it is worrysome for aquatic life and food productivity that 80% of the river bed is in true drought...oh yes, of course, there are less fish, higher prices, more poverty, more hunger, for some months. Then all goes back to normal. The bad thing, every year it looks drier and drier.
In the Orinoco, we do have a dry season, just not an intense drought as in the vast Amazon. Only 30% of Orinoco water is of Andean Origin, the remainder 70% is Guyana Shield Rainforest Water, where the word drought has little meaning.
Ed

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2010 11:55 pm 
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Nobody will convince me that the Tapajos fish in the styro box, as well as all above shown in the thread and those identified as St Isabels on the Hustinx website are not the same fish, possibly even the same batch. These are what I understand as Tapajos.
I think these fish are different from those Paolo has, the original St Isabels.
I will ask Paolo to pitch in and make a comparison with his own.
Ed

P.D. "Original St Isabels?" Figure it out, I'm going for some Tylenol.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 29, 2010 12:37 am 
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Hi everybody!

In my opinion the specimens of the first and second picture are much more "scalare like" than the S.Isabel "altums" I owned.
I see bigger scales and the red spots are bigger; also the back colour is brilliant red, while in my S. Isabel the colour was dark, bloody red.

The fishes in the box are difficult to evaluate... pale colours due to stress make it difficult.

Once more I agree with Ed, I identify both Hustinx and these specimens to be different from S.Isabel I owned.

:wink:


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 29, 2010 8:00 pm 
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This one made me instantly think of my Finarama buddies...you all...seems to be a Rio Negro specific report...

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/us_amazon_dr ... xyZXBvcg--


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 29, 2010 11:23 pm 
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Where have you been? Shoveling snow I guess.
At least I live in a condo and don't have to do it myself for now which means, I have more time to feed my fish.
Should I say welcome back?
Ed

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 30, 2010 7:13 am 
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puertoayacucho wrote:
Nobody will convince me that the Tapajos fish in the styro box, as well as all above shown in the thread and those identified as St Isabels on the Hustinx website are not the same fish, possibly even the same batch. These are what I understand as Tapajos.
I think these fish are different from those Paolo has, the original St Isabels.
I will ask Paolo to pitch in and make a comparison with his own.
Ed

P.D. "Original St Isabels?" Figure it out, I'm going for some Tylenol.


Hi Ed, Yes they are likely the same batch.
Date of Hustinx Sta Isabel batch import, June 2009
Date of Hudson’s Tapajos angelfish shown in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rq57yLAEixA , June 2009

If one is to base the location origin of these angelfish from the body shape and size, would they be Rio Negro or Amazon River?
Below, the Altum on the left and the Sta Isabel or Tapajos on the right basically have the same body shape. Image

Supposing the angel in question is indeed Tapajos-where the type species of the area is scalare, it is very intriguing that the body shape is very altum.
How did this come about?

Paolo Piccinelli wrote:
Hi everybody!

In my opinion the specimens of the first and second picture are much more "scalare like" than the S.Isabel "altums" I owned.
I see bigger scales and the red spots are bigger; also the back colour is brilliant red, while in my S. Isabel the colour was dark, bloody red.

The fishes in the box are difficult to evaluate... pale colours due to stress make it difficult.

Once more I agree with Ed, I identify both Hustinx and these specimens to be different from S.Isabel I owned.

:wink:


Hi Paolo, comparing the scales of the two angels in the above and below photos, they look the same size, imo. The body shape of these two angels below are
even more similar than those in the photo above. The Tapajos or Sta Isabel in the photo above and below, is one and the same angel.
Image
Jeff Kubina's original altum photo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kubina/131 ... 112156297/ http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

The Altum shown above has red fins, similar to the Hudson Tapajos and Hustinx Sta Isabel.

Given the altum above with red fins, and with altums having red spots on the back isn't it more plausible that the angel in question is Sta Isabel (and not Tapajos)
which got its body shape/size and color from the gene flow coming from
puertoayacucho wrote:
Hi Ken. P. altum is found down through the Cassiquiare and into the Rio Negro watershed and the Uppermost Rio Negro.


and gene flow continuing into the Amazon ...by chance reaching Tapajos?

Carotenoids are used up by the immune system to fight stress. resulting in the loss of red/orange color in varying degrees as shown below
Hudson H&K wrote:
From http://www.finarama.com/forum/viewtopic ... 0393#20393 Thank you friends.....

see the new angel fish pictures , i think now the red color is comeback again.

Image

Image
Hudson

These angels above have almost no more color as compared to recently caught one below.
Discus-Hans wrote:
Some tapajos angel fish , see the orange and red color in this type
Image


Although the angelfish variants Sta Isabel and Tapajos are being discussed, the topic of this thread is really about the effect of extreme drought, and
might as well add flash flooding, to the gene flow of angelfish variants/populations from the different upstream tributaries down to the Amazon River.

Heiko was concerned about the effect of the drought on the Rio Jutai. If the Jutai angels do not migrate down with the receding waters and enter the main
Amazon river then this variant could be lost but if some have been forced to migrate down, then they are now part of the angel population in the main Amazon river.

What is the "cline" in relation to Altum and Scalare as two separate species?

I now have wild X domestic angels that are 75% Rio Negro, (assuming the father is Sta Isabel and not Tapajos). The mother is a Rio Negro x Blue (pb/pb) domestic
(My friend Neil Oyama has one blue (not pb/pb) wild, almost the whole body is steel blue. He also has one that is steel green almost the whole body).
The majority now have the high bodies. The 50% RNegro did not have high bodies like the 75% RN. There is a "cline" here at the hatchery.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 2:52 pm 
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Quote Ken:
"Hi Ed, Yes they are likely the same batch.
Date of Hustinx Sta Isabel batch import, June 2009
Date of Hudson’s Tapajos angelfish shown in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rq57yLAEixA , June 2009"

So we're getting somewhere.

Then I would say they are ALL TAPAJOS as well as all of the other pics in this thread after the Kubina photo.

Ed

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 4:08 pm 
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puertoayacucho wrote:
Quote Ken:
"Hi Ed, Yes they are likely the same batch.
Date of Hustinx Sta Isabel batch import, June 2009
Date of Hudson’s Tapajos angelfish shown in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rq57yLAEixA , June 2009"

So we're getting somewhere.

Then I would say they are ALL TAPAJOS as well as all of the other pics in this thread after the Kubina photo.

Ed


Hi Ed,

Another member, Jeffrey Richard posted his Sa Isabels
Jeffreyrichard wrote:
From http://www.finarama.com/forum/viewtopic ... 8991#18991 Post subject: New Wild Santa Isabel Scalare Reply with quote

Here are some pictures (not the best ...) of my new Santa Isabel Scalare I received last month from Mark Denaro @ Anubias Design.
They are really exquisite ... super large, colorful, and very dominant. i have them in my 125 gallon tank I set up a a Rio Orinoco
tank with 3 Altums, Columbian Tetras, Metea Corys and some Rams. Here are the pictures ...

Image

Image



Another member, Joost also acquired some Sta Isabels.
Joost wrote:
From http://www.finarama.com/forum/viewtopic ... 7679#17679 Post subject: re: Super Red Scalare ???

Here are some pics of my small wild Santa Isabels. The largest ones of the group are just now starting to show some colour. I got them completely colourless.

It starts out with only a few red dots on their back, but the amount gradually increases. Same with the colourings in the fins and tails.
I feed them mostly frozen Brine Shrimp, and a variety of other feeds including: Spirulina flakes, black mosquito larvae, glassworms, bloodworms, mysis, daphnia all frozen.

Image

Image

Some of Joost's Sta Isabels developed blue iridescence on the shoulders
Quote:

similar to the blue iridescence on Dale Jordan's Rio Negro "altum".
puertoayacucho wrote:
From http://www.finarama.com/forum/viewtopic ... 0927#20927
...
I am posting below two pics of Dale's fish. He expalined to me that he did not coillect these himself but git them through a
highly reputed exporter from Manaus who informed him (Dale) of the approximate location of the collection.

Dale excuses himself for not participating at the moment since he is way too busy setting up his first Discus exports in many years to the U.S. but expalined
that the fish sold to him by his friend Sardis Montero (the exporter) are exactly the same as those he caught in the Upper Rio Negro in 1991.

And so, here are the pics.
Image
Image
BTW, Dale excuses himeself because he says the pics are really bad...but he rescued them off his old and crashed hard drive.

Regards
Ed

The blue iridescence on the shoulder of Joost's Sta Isabel and Dale's Rio Negro Altum, are they due to the same gene/s?

The exact same looking angels as the Tapajos are also being sold as Cuiunis in Europe.

http://www.ke-aquaristik.de/Stockliste- ... ::134.html

http://www.ke-aquaristik.de/Stockliste- ... ::135.html

Except for Hudson, all other traders call their angels either Sta Isabel or Cuiuni. Sta Isabel and Cuiuni are basically neighbors so no issue about locality.
Why did all other traders call their angels Sta Isabel or Cuiuni. Who gave the locality, the traders or their supplier/s?

It would be great if the traders could be asked who gave the locality of the angels they have identified as Sta Isabel or Cuiuni?

The Kubina angelfish, is it also Tapajos? If so, why?

The Cuiunis in the styrobox pictured in the link above, they look exactly like the Hudson Tapajos, are they also Tapajos?

Are Paolo's angels Sta Isabel?
Quote:
The Santa Isabels are circled in red:
Image

If so, then they are the only ones that are Sta Isabel while all the rest are Tapajos, which would be strange.

In terms of height, the "Sta Isabel" can grow to about a foot tall, which is the same size as that of the Altums grown in aquariums.
Joost wrote:
From http://www.finarama.com/forum/viewtopic ... 9081#19081

The largest ones are a little over 25cm including fins now, that would be about 10 inches. I think (but have no proof since they are wilds) that they are about 11-12 month old now.
That, because of when they started to show some colours and also compared to the other sizes that where available at the time when I bought them. The largest specimens
then were still quite a bit larger than mine now
, + mine still need to change quite a bit in bodyshape to look like the (near) adults that I have seen.
Although the latter can go pretty quick with these fish, since they keep changing appearance all the time.


The size of Jeffrey's Sta Isabels
Jeffreyrichard wrote:
From http://www.finarama.com/forum/viewtopic ... 8991#18991 Post subject: New Wild Santa Isabel Scalare
...
They are really exquisite ... super large,...


Hi Jeff, could you please give the approximate height of your Sta Isabels? Thanks.

Do scalares in the area of Tapajos, Alenquer and thereabouts reach a height of about a foot?


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 11:39 pm 
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well...

I suppose that writing "S.Isabel" on sale tanks is a smart trick to sell fishes with some red on their backs at a higher price. :wink:

If this habit belongs to retailer it leads to local problems/misunderstandings... if it belongs to wholesalers/importers it could generate a real big mess.

Do you feel we are in the second option?!? :? :wink:


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 11:40 am 
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Hi guys,

just very fast as I saw this thread now:

1. I do not see anywhere here any angel from the Tapajós River. These are all from the Rio Negro basin and all ate P. scalare, if red (St. isabale = Cuiuini = Rio negro tributary, St. Isabel is a village with less than 20,000 on the Rio Negro).
2. It has been said a thousand times, that tose angels bred as P. altum (one of the photos) are those P. scalare from teh Rio Negro, which have a (little) similarity with P. altum, but never grow as large, do not had the indent, the pattern is differnet, etc.
They are complete differnet fishes.

best regards
Heiko Bleher
www.aquapress-bleher.com


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 9:49 pm 
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puertoayacucho wrote:
Where have you been? Shoveling snow I guess.
At least I live in a condo and don't have to do it myself for now which means, I have more time to feed my fish.
Should I say welcome back?
Ed


Hello good bud! I'm trying to get back in the groove...I had to take a hiatus from the electronic fish world for a variety of reasons...(from the looks of that last ID thread I was involved in I am glad I did...haha) Just so I don't hijack this thread anymore I will briefly say I still have a pair of angels (the only fish I have however there may be a lone ABN in the tank just haven't seen him in a few months) and I can guarentee they are scalares because they are tougher than titanium nails. I am fixing to relocate them into a new tank I recently aquired and I think I will throw up a pic or two of them even though I am pretty sure they are domestics...they are absolutely beautiful lots of blue and spotting and a little red in places mucho iridescense. They've put some eggs on a hangon filter several times but apparently they like cavier (can't say I blame them having to eat bloodworms all the time you know)..at any rate thanks for the welcome back Ed...my apologies for interrupting the thread folks!


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 4:27 pm 
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I don't think the drought in Tropical SA rivers will have long term consequences on the Angels as Pterophyllum are able to replace lost population in a rather short time and even for those localized down to a particular river drainage are likely to have plenty of fish which survived the drought to rebuild their normal populations in just a couple years.
Fish with much smaller niches and exist in temporary bodies of water will be lost locally but probably not the types in general.
This genus has existed for millions of years and have probably been through worse at sometimes in the past.

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