Spotted Headstander (Chilodus punctatus)
The Spotted Headstander is a fascinating, peaceful fish known for its unique headstanding behavior. This species displays a slender, elongated body with a grayish-brown coloration adorned with numerous small black spots.
The Spotted Headstander reaches an adult size of 3-4 inches and should be kept in a group of at least 5-6 individuals to ensure their well-being and natural behavior. Spotted Headstanders are compatible with other peaceful, similarly-sized fish. Ideal tank mates include tetras, rasboras, corydoras, and dwarf cichlids. Due to their unique feeding habits, avoid housing them with fast, aggressive eaters that may outcompete them for food.
These fish are omnivorous, consuming a mix of plant-based foods and small invertebrates. Provide a varied diet that includes high-quality flakes and sinking pellets, supplemented with live or frozen foods such as brine shrimp, daphnia, and bloodworms. They will also graze on algae in the aquarium.
Creating a suitable environment for Spotted Headstanders requires a well-maintained, densely planted aquarium with hiding spots, driftwood, and rocks. A sandy or fine gravel substrate is recommended. A biotope-style setup with leaf litter and floating plants will further replicate their natural habitat. Gentle water flow and dim lighting conditions, and plants forming shady areas are also important for their comfort.
Headstanders are susceptible to the effects of dissolved organic pollutants in immature aquariums. It is not recommended to add them to any aquariums until they have matured and have a stable biological environment.
A 30-gallon tank is the minimum size, with a 50-gallon community aquarium being ideal. Keep the water parameters within a pH range of 6.0-7.5, hardness between 5-15 dGH, and a temperature of 72-82°F (22-28°C).
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