Re: [RML] Re: Rainbow Size Frustration -- Melanotaenia

Scott Davis (unclescott at
Tue, 6 Dec 2005 02:58:30 -0800 (PST)

>Looks like there's a lot of stunted growth in commercially bred fish in Belgium then!

Perhaps, but how old are the fish in a store? Certainly they aren't a year old. Don't rainbows take longer to mature than many of the "bread and butter" aquarium store stock?

I dropped by a Chicagoland place, with a pretty good reputation, and was similarly struck, no, dismayed by how young their rainbows and other stock were. With a flashlight I could have sexed the praecox, the Glos. incisus had one pinking up, everything else was silver. (The running joke in shops is that as soon as an incisus turns red, it is snapped up.) The three other species I didn't even try to sex out.

Similarly most of their tetras and cichlids were very immature fishes. They would have been impossible to sort by gender. Larger fish cost more to raise and obviously more at the wholesale and retail level. Local Americans are so penny wise and pound foolish, we get what we ask for.

I wouldn't want to pre-judge the aquatic customers where you live, but would "market pressures" also influence the age of fishes in your LFS?

All the best!