4-02-2020, 19:41
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Tropical fish vary in size, behaviour, diet, aquatic conditions and lifespan. Very often larger fish species live longer than smaller ones.

The famous short-lived Fundulopanchax Gardneri lives naturally in water bodies in South America and Africa. These fish live in arid areas with short rainfall periods. During the rainy season, the living conditions are ideal. During this time, rivers burst their banks and plenty of places to live, feed and breed. With the onset of drought, everything changes dramatically. Small bodies of water dry up almost completely. When the water disappears, so do the fish, but they lay eggs before they die. The eggs remain in moist soil until the end of the drought, and with the onset of the rainy season the fry hatch from them, which quickly grow, multiply and die. The entire life cycle of these fish is only one year. Therefore, if you buy Afiosemionov, be prepared for the fact that they can live in an aquarium for a relatively short time.

Next in longevity are the nano species. Poecilia Wingei, various Betta and Tetra fish species. All of these fish do not live long in nature. Being small, they are at the bottom of the food chain. In nature, they have many enemies - herons, kingfishers and predatory fish. These fish can complete their life cycle in just one year, during which they will hatch, grow, reach sexual maturity, find a mate, spawn and pass on their DNA to the next generation before something causes their premature death. Under aquarium conditions, these fish can live significantly longer, due to the absence of predators and natural disasters. Tetras can live 4-5 years in a home aquarium, while they usually live about a year in the wild.

Poecilia Wingei

Medium sized fish such as gourami can live from 5 to 10 years, provided the water quality and diet are at an appropriate level. Catfish are long-livers, even corydoras can live longer than 10 years. Some catfish species can live for 25 years, so think carefully before purchasing these fish, as they will require long-term shelter. Most large cichlids, such as Oscar, can live 10 to 20 years, so plan ahead if you can provide the fish with a large aquarium and all associated costs for the next 20 years.

Factors that affect the lifespan of fish

You don't know how old the fish is when you buy it so if the fish you buy is five years old, it may already be five and a half or six years old, for example. Most tropical fish are sold under a year old and come from commercial fish farms located in Asia.

Fish continue to grow throughout their lives so if you buy a specimen that is the maximum size for its species or larger, it may be old.

Water temperature plays a decisive role on the lifespan of the fish. The metabolism of the fish is directly related to temperature.

The warmer the water, the more fish eat and grow faster. However, their lifespan will be shorter. Goldfish at a young age can be kept in warm water to speed up their development, but such keeping conditions and overfeeding also means they will not live as long as fish whose aquarium emulates the natural autumn-winter cycle. If you buy a goldfish, you shouldn't expect them to live for many years in an aquarium like the same fish that live in a pond.

Goldfish (Carssius Auratus).

The same applies to tropical fish. Keep them at an optimum temperature or slightly lower for longevity.

Longevity is also affected by reproduction. Additional effort and energy is expended by the males during the spawning season to attract the females. Females that spawn frequently do not live long. Continuous spawning often slows down the growth of the fish, as all energy for development is redirected towards breeding. If you want a pair of cichlids to reach their maximum size, grow them separately and only pair them after they have reached their maximum size. When rearing young fish together, the females will remain small.

Fish record-breaking longevity

The record life span of a goldfish can be as long as 40 years. There is a story about a koi carp that lived more than 200 years, although this cannot be proven and is probably a folk tale. If you want to increase the longevity of aquarium fish - offer them a spacious aquarium, excellent water quality and a varied, healthy diet.

Do fish die of old age?

As with humans, the cause of death is usually underlying. If your small fish are about two years old, old age may well be a justifiable cause of death. But if a large fish dies after two years, the cause of death will almost certainly be due to other factors such as water quality or disease.

Check the temperature and oxygen level of the water, its pH value and the content of elevated ammonia, nitrite and nitrate concentrations as soon as a dead fish is found.

Dead fish decompose very quickly in tropical fish tanks, so remove them with a net as soon as you find them. Dead fish that are not caught in time may cause elevated ammonia levels, which further threaten the lives of other fish in the aquarium.

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