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Corydoras

From Small Beginnings

My first visit into the realms of catfish, or more precisely Corydoras, was way back in 1974. While out with a friend on a fish-buying foray, visiting several of the midlands best known aquatic shops. In one particular shop in Coventry (Alas no longer there), I came across a tank containing what were labeled 'Dwarf Corydoras' Corydoras hastatus, I later found out the correct name was Corydoras pygmaeus. There were about 50 in the tank and to me they looked fantastic, all swimming around in one large shoal. After talking with the shop owner for a while I decided that the little catfish would be a must for the living room tank and duly bought two pair. It wasn't until we were well on our way back home that it dawned on me, the tank that these catfish were to be housed in was not suitable in its present state and needed to be stripped down and re-set-up. The main problem was where to put the catfish in the meantime, the shop owner had told me that these fish were very hardy and tolerant of temperature fluctuation, he said the lower end of the tropical range (70?F - 75?F) would be ideal for them. With this in mind when I arrived home I immediately started acclimatising them to our local water, by putting them with the water they came in into a four-inch show jar, these were very popular at the time for displaying fish in at open shows. Over a period of an hour of so, making small water changes at a time, I completely changed the water in the jar for water from the tank. The little catfish seemed totally unperturbed by all the activity, in fact seemed quite excited every time new water was poured in, actively swimming up into the incoming flow.

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