Select Aquatics of Erie CO.

               When will a Fish Be available?




              The availability of any fish described here will be kept up to date on the Home Page.

              There is a reason the fish carried here are rarely found in the pet trade, or are not considered as fish that could be sold
              commercially. They may breed inconsistently, or very slowly, or in low numbers. They may be tricky to keep due to their
              temperature, food or water quality requirements.

              When Select Aquatics was started in 2009, 75-200 fish of about 25 species were bred out, each in 2-4 species-only   
              tanks so losing a line would be less likely when there were problems. Breeding tanks and fry grow out tanks were set up
              as needed. It took 5 years for the sales to surpass ability to breed some species quickly enough. So I am faced with a
              choice - I can go volume over quality by compromising water quality and overall health with higher stocking levels, less  
              quality foods, etc. or allow a few species to breed out occasionally, not shipping until their numbers come back up. 

              Select Aquatics is about the fish and their healthy survival, so compromising their care  is simply not an option! As a
              result, some species when posted as available will only be so for a few weeks or  months, but then must be pulled and
              allowed to build back up again.
              So I will keep as many of these rare and beautiful fish in production, keeping as many available as I am able. Over time
              a species or two will come down as they  become common in the hobby, but I will continue to work with the species
              currently kept here. Currently, both the velifera and the Xiphophorus montezumae, both previously on  this page, have
              picked up in numbers and are being sold primarily in groups of 6 (with 2 extras),  as the weather again becomes
              appropriate for shipping.  (Spring 2017)  

              Though heavy sales can always deplete a population, there are a few species here that, because they are especially
              prolific, do very well, or I can control their reproduction (The Odessas), they will generally always be available. Those
              include the Alfaro cultratus, The Odessa Barbs, The Green Dragon plecos (Though sexed fish also run in cycles as
              available), and the Neocaridina Shrimp. This year for the first time I have run lower on some of the next most  dependable  
              fish, the X. mayae, the X. helleri Rio Otapa and the wild X. alvarezi. (Often, fry groups are available) So far,  I have been
              able to keep up fairly large populations of the Ameca splendens, Ilyodon furcidens, Limia "Tiger",  
              Xenotoca eiseni San Marcos and the Zoogoneticus tequila.

              However, when a customer calls asking for a fish that isn't available, it is often almost impossible to explain why it
              isn't for sale, other than that it just isn't. As a fishkeeper, I too question why it should take, say, a year for a fish
              to again become available. If you've got it, and gestation is just 30 or 60 days...  What's the problem? Well, to possibly
              help all of us t better keep these fish, here's what I am doing here. BTW, my water here is about 7.4pH, and 90ppm.

              Greg Sage and the Staff at Select Aquatics 

       Characodon lateralis Red Morph: This C. lateralis line is not a prolific
       breeder. Recently, it has become clear they have been colony bred for
       long enough, and greater attention is now being spent  on maintaining and
       improving their all red color.

       They are currently kept in 3 29 talls and 3 10 gallons for breeding, best
       pairs are being set up to refine and improve their color toward even better
       quality in future generations. Their feeding has also been increased with a
       wider variety of live and frozen foods, and I hope to have them back in good
       numbers by spring 2017. Until then, the Puente Pino Suarez population
       will be available, (see below) a very attractive wild form of lateralis. Limited
       young pairs of this original red line may be available soon, please write for availabiliy.  
       Skiffia multipunctata, La Isle Zamora- One of the more striking multipunctata
       that has ever come into the hobby, I had lost the line in 2010,  reacquired it, but the
       stock sent to me is absent the generous black splotchiness of the original line.
       These are available, but males with larger amounts of black are being colony
       bred to encourage a return of the former coloration. Extremely rare in the hobby,
       efforts to locate another population of this fish have been unsuccessful. If you
       know of someone that has this population with the original dark coloration,
       PLEASE let me know!        

       These are fed frozen newly hatched BBS 1x per day, dry food 1-2x per day, 15% 
       automatic  water changes, hand water changes of about 10% every other day.
       Bottom kept clean, lightly planted with floating plants, females are isolated to have  
       fry in net breeders in the same tanks, temperatures kept at 68-74 degrees. During  
       the summertime, they received live daphnia daily.

       The tanks with the coldest water goodeids are kept uncovered. I have had discussions
       that restricted air exchange at the surface due to a tank being covered may have
       contributed to earlier deaths, though they are receiving moderate aeration. If anyone
       has thoughts on this, I would like to hear them - please contact me at

       UPDATE- These are currently available in groups of 6 2-4 month old unsexed or
       young pairs in limited quantities. Email  for availability.



       Xenotoca lyonsi, Rio Tamosopo- These are a slightly lesser known population than 
       the San Marcos, and are a very different looking fish, with a bright orange yellow/caudal
       and peduncle, and a blue sheen across the back half of the body. A group of these males
       is a very attractive colony .

       These have finally taken off, and many fry are growing out, and groups of 6
       unsexed young will be available and listed as available on the homepage. Young adult
       pairs are also available.

       Recently these have been sold to customers keeping ponds that are looking for a more
       "wild" species to give their pond a more natural look, that also tolerate a wide range of
       temperatures.  These were formerly known as Xenotoca eiseni, Rio Tamazula.

       Xiphophorus birchmanni- I am very pleased to say that these have taken off,
       and as they enter their 4th generation here, their adjustment has gone well, and recent
       improvements in their water change schedule has begun to produce enough fry to offer
       occasional fry groups of 2-4 month old fish.

      This is a rarely seen, distinctive fish, and one of the most striking in the livebearer
      hobby. However, they do best with better water quality where there is some water
      movement, and the water is relatively clean and consistent. Live plants are provided 
      with occasional feedings of live foods to supplement standard flake food. Here, the  
      water is 7.4 and 90ppm from the tap, and a thin layer of crushed coral or oyster shell  
      is added over a portion of the bottom of their tanks.

      A species and video page are being prepared as their numbers increase, youtube 
      videos of the fish here can now be seen on youtube at Selectaquatics X. birchmanni.

       Xiphophorus montezumae, Tamosopo- Keeping this regal, majestic swordtail
       is not the same as many of the other swordtails. In a well kept 30 gallon tank, with
       moderate aeration and good foods they will generally do fine, and they are also one
       swordtail that generally do not eat their fry. However, they are not as prolific as
       the other swords carried here, and generally do not begin producing fry until they are
       7-8 months old. With each rough generation, where older breeders are retired and the
       next generation replaces them, we have added to the number of grow out tanks. 

       These have now done very well, and wait list customers are being contacted and fish
       shipped as the weather again becomes good for shipping. A Video on their availability
       can be seen HERE.


      Synodontis lucipinnis - Sometimes called the "Dwarf petricola", this African catfish
      is graceful, hardy, beautiful, a perfect community fish, and only gets to be 3-4
      inches long. After a long period to get their breeding and raising of fry dialed
      in, this naturally higher white fish will be sold as available (1-1.25 inch
      fish = $12.50). We are starting to build out the grow out tanks for this fish,
      and have 1-2 inch fish available currently.

      These are perfect tankmates for livebearers!



       Characodon lateralis, Puente Pino Suarez- This population is new to being
       kept in home aquariums, and we are finding they will do well when maintained like 
       other lateralis populations. (67-74 degrees, aeration, fairly clean conditions,
       occasional supplements of beefheart or brine shrimp).

       However, these do tend to be slightly more sensitive to nitrates, so you do need to
       siphon up any mulm and maintain water changes. I discovered this by using large nets
       to breed the females, hung in the breeder tank to get them started with the greatest
       consistency. Food would accumulate in the bottom of the nets (3-4 days worth), and I 
       would start to lose fry, which has not been the case with other lateralis populations.

       Fortunately, they are much more prolific, and the first larger generation of young
       is growing out, and their fry will be sold. Check the home page for availability. 



       Honduran Blue Cichlids - These are something I was breeding for fun before Select 
       Aquatics, about 7 years ago. As Select Aquatics got busier, the entire stock was  
       donated to Colorado University. These were an effort on my part to develop an all   
       powder blue cichlid. I was narrowing in on the look I wanted when I knew I would
       likely not sell cichlids as part of the Select Aquatics lineup.

       The lab then eventually closed down spring 2015, and hundreds of these fish had been
       bred for student projects. However, the line breeding had been lost, such that the
       line had returned to the wild coloration of the fish I first started with. The original
       fish were a population of Honduran Red Points given to me by a friend that had received
       them from the person that had collected them. Unfortunately, I do not have the location
       information of this population. I was working at CU, and was asked to help distribute the
       fish to local pet stores etc. At that time I noticed a few very nice, pure blue mutations
       that reflected my initial efforts of 4 years before. I realized those fish could pick up
       on the work I had been doing. So that this special line was not lost, I brought back 
       4 young pairs of the nicest all blue fish that were there.

       On a recent visit, Dustin from Dustin's Fish Tanks was kind enough to take videos
       of this fishroom (Very cool guy, by the way!), and a tank of these blue cichlids were
       shown in that video, which was posted online.

       So I have received inquiries asking if they are available. Of the 4 pairs of all blue
       adults, three have bred, and about 75 young are now about 3 months old. All of the
       young carry the full black markings of the original wild fish. Some of these young
       possess very strong blue in their coloration, and will be excellent breeders for
       the next generation. I plan to selectively breed for the all blue coloration.
       Continued breeding of the best all blue fish should start to stabilize the line over 2-3
       generations. But whether they will continue to be fertile and breed consistently
       has yet to be determined.

       These young fish that are a high blue and red with the standard black markings of
       the Honduran Red Point are often available for $8.50 each. Email for availability.

       It will likely be 18 months / 2 years before these are available for sale.

       They will be offered as a first egg layer for the established Livebearer keeper, as
       they are easy to breed, are great parents, and are a fairly mellow, well behaved
       Cichlid. And strikingly beautiful. The males have more red in their fins, and careful
       selection of future breeders will establish the look. These are not hybrids or a cross
       of any sort.

           One of the females

                                                                         Pleco Green Dragons

               These have been very hardy and breed well, and there are currently (Feb. 2017) a group of 22 tanks
                         dedicated to the Green Dragons, from 75s, divided 55s for breeding, 30s, 40s and 10s for fry grow out.
                         Each year I separate select fish to be raised as sexed fish, and generally sell out of sexed fish each
                         year. The fish stay at the 2-3 inch size for a couple months as finnage and color develops, and most
                         fish are sold at this unsexed size. We recently expanded to 9 breeding groups, and hope to see an
                         improvement in availability of sexed fish over the next 1-2 breeding seasons. Due to culling  and
                         selecting for the fish with the best finnage and color, we only sell about 50% of the fish bred to
                         customers. The rest go to tanks in the schools programs and other outlets.

                         However, I am still culling heavily for finnage and color as we enter our 6th generation. Sales have been
                         brisk, so it is possible that a "No" could be posted on the Home Page for the 2-3 inch size. If that should
                         happen, I will be growing up those approaching that size, and they should be available again within a
                         month or so.





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