Understanding & Care for Datnoids
Juvenile or young Tiger Fish are prompt to sudden death. Many a times, the cause of the death might not be clear. Parasitic infection, Stress/Starvation and poor water conditions are just some contributing factors. I’ll elaborate more on these…
It’s always an agony to see your beloved fish suffering from diseases & passes away. I know how it feels as I’ve suffered losses during my early days in tiger keeping. It usually started off as an unnoticeable light pink/red sore on the fish body ( e.g. fins, gill plates, gills… etc ). The swollen portion of the fish’s body tissue will develops into an accumulative pus and the affected fish will be weaken and become infirm. If left untreated, the disease will spread swiftly to the rest of the inhabitants within the same community. I’ve lost 2pcs of Datnioides Microlepis ( IT ) & 1pc of Datnioides Campelli ( NGT ) as a result of these deadly disease. I’ll not touch on treatment for I’m
also sourcing for an effective cures. But one thing for sure, it’s always a good practise to quarantine your newly acquired fish in a separate tank for at least a week before introducing them into the main tank. This will reduce the chances of infection to your other fishes in the main tank.
Stress & Starvation:
Datnoids are carnivores. A healthy tiger will wackup any fish/food that fits it’s mouth. But this may not be so in juvenile. They are docile & usually non-aggressive towards other fishes. Hence any constant bullying by other fishes, new to an environment… etc will result in stress and it may ends up starving itself. Most tiger fish will turn unstable & will display blackish patches over it’s body when stressed. “Season Parking” ( hiding in a corner ) is another distinguished characteristic displayed by a stressed up tiger fish.
Datnoids are known to go without food for weeks or some even months. These usually resulted in sunken belly or death in some cases. During the starvation period, avoid altering the tank’s setup as it will cause more stress to it. If needs to, isolate it by having partion in the tank. Do not remove the fish itself. Feed it’s favourite food ( e.g. feeder fish, ghost shrimp… ) to stimulate it’s hunting instinct. Again, steps must be taken to quarantine these feeders before giving them to your fish.
Another method which most hobbyists tried and achieve relatively good result is by adding fast eating fishes; this is a Monkey-See-Monkey-Do’s effect. I’ve tried this method personally but not all fishes are that willing to follow suit. Guess it all depends on individual fish’s characteristic.
As datnoids are territorial fishes, stress as a result of fights among the same species are unavoidable. From my experience, it is better not to keep only 1 pair of the same species in a tank. Either keep 1 or in group of 3~5pcs to avoid or defocus the aggression of the dorminating alpha piece. Landmarks identification can be achieved by placing some driftwoods/blogwoods to create hiding grounds for the tigers although some felt that these might result in more time spend by the tiger in hiding. So it is more of a personal preferences.
More importantly, your endurance level must be on par with your coaxing’s determination to get your Tiger Fish to start eating.
Take note, “Patient is the Key to a Heathy Tiger” & “A Heathy Tiger is A Hungry Tiger”.
– Regular water change is a must for all fish types (25% water change every 2~3 days).
– Adopt frequent water parameters checks (Ammonia= 0, Nitrite= 0 & Low Nitrate).
– Optimum pH range: 6.5~7.0
Datnoids should be kept in fresh water or blackish water. Some said to accustomize your tigers‘ preferences in term of their stability condition. For me, I do not practise adding salt after water change as I’m used to keep rays; old habit dies hard. Again this is personal preferences, no hard & fast rules to it.
( Remark: These are my prefered settings. Please take it as a reference only ).
Datnoids keeping is a challenge, it takes lots of trials & errors plus efforts to find the best tank’s setup / various fishes’ combination in order to bring up the best in your Tiger Fish. Hope all Tiger Bros can help by contributing your experiences so as to benefit beginners & let this passion grows within us in this Datnioides Forum.