Badid guru Stefan van der Voort explains how to keep Badis blosyrus, a large species which has recently been imported into the UK.
Scientific name: Badis blosyrus
Origin: This species originates with certainty from Raimana and the Buxa Tiger Reserve in Western Assam, India.
Size: A large species reaching up to 10cm/4 in males and up to 9cm/33/4 in females.
Water: These large badids do best in soft water (GH 3.0-4.0), pH 6.0-7.5 with a cool temperature of around 22C/72F. Slightly colder and warmer temperatures are tolerated, however.
Aquarium: Due to their size a large tank is required, at least 80cm/32 for one pair or one male to three females. The tank should preferably be a species tank to provide optimal care, though the larger schooling fish such as Puntius will be tolerated (smaller fish the size of Neon tetras have been reported as being the subject of attacks when these badids are kept hungry). The tank should be heavily planted thus providing the fish with plenty hiding places. Easy fish to keep.
Diet: Frozen and live foods only. Favourites are Artemia, glassworm and bloodworm.
Breeding: A cave spawner. Coconut shells make good spawning sites. The male guards the eggs and fry until they leave the nest; as of then they are on their own. Number of eggs can be anything from 20 to more, depending on the condition and size of the fishes. Not a difficult Badis to breed.
Notes: Badis blosyrus is one of the rarer badids, only occasionally seen for sale and seldom reported being in possession of hobbyists. There isn t much interest in these fishes and therefore large quantities will not be offered in stores.
Adult colouration: The base colour is an orange-reddish with irregular scattered bluish-blackish blotches on the lateral side which may form ten to eleven vertical bars form time to time. The fins are hyaline with the dorsal, anal and caudal fin origins having the orange-reddish colour and blotches as described above with also a white outer margin being present. The dorsal fin has a large black blotch located at the first few rays, and another large black blotch at the centre of the caudal peduncle. Females are coloured fairly similar though less intense and with a more grey to brown base colour on their body.
Similar species: Badis assamensis is the closest related fish though the two species are not that difficult to tell apart: B. blosyrus has an elongated jaw giving it a unique appearance, and also a much longer head compared to the former. Colouration and size are similar.
Availability: Rare in the hobby, mainly because of the low interest in badids. These were on sale at Wildwoods in Middlesex (0208 360243).
This article was first published in the March 2006 issue of Practical Fishkeeping.