Michael A. Stecker

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My Fresh Water Tropical Fish

Balloon Mollies

Macro photograph of the eye of a white Balloon Molly fish (Poecilia latipinna).  The total length of the fish is about 1-inch.  I placed the small fish in a birthing tank to isolate her so she could not move too far from the camera.  I used the tank's overhead fluorescent lighting and shot hand-held through the aquarium's glass wall with a Nikon Coolpix 4500 in the Macro mode.

Imaging Data: Nikon Coolpix 4500 in the Macro mode at focal length 26.4
 millimeters using shutter priority at 1/30 second, f/4.5, multi-pattern metering and auto white balance.  2272 X 1704, fine jpeg, iso: 100.  The image was cropped.
Goldy's Progeny
My golden colored female Balloon Molly recently gave birth to about 30 live fish.  Some 10 - 20%, however, were stillborns or premature fry who died soon after birth in the early egg form to well developed fetuses.

There were about 30 live surviving births.  However, note the two yellow spheres near the center.  In the one on the right you can see the fetus curled up with the head and eye at the top.  Just to the right of this is a darker green-yellow sphere (with white top) which is probably an unfertilized
egg -- a blighted ovum.



Common name: Black-spotted Corydoras or Bandit Cory (catfish)
genus: Corydoras
species: melanistius
length: about 3 cm


A three centimeter South American "Albino Cory" (Corydoras paleatus) swims over my sunken "Spanish Galleon".  This catfish does not have scales, but instead two rows of rectangular overlapping bony plates called scutes.  It is able to get oxygen both through its gills as well as occasional gulps of air which is absorbed from its intestine.


A close-up photo of the barbels ("whiskers") of the Albino Cory.  I used
a Nikon Coolpix 4500 digital camera in the macro mode.




The colorful male Dwarf Flame Gourami (Colisa lalia) from India and Bangladesh is about 2-inches in length.  It lights up any tank.



White Mouth Disease in my Gold Gourami

This Gold Gourami has been in my 29 gallon tank since its start 8 weeks ago.  It has done fine until recently when it slowed down and ate less vigorously than usual.  Like the Sailfin Molly, there is a white area involving the mouth as well as a few patches elsewhwere.  It
is probably a fungal infection.


Kissing Gourami

Caught in the act!  All photos taken with a Canon A620 digital camera with flash