Not All Aquarium Fish Come From a Pet Shop

My son and I have been keeping fishes for about a year now. It has been a very challenging and rewarding hobby. We started with a few 10 gal. aquariums and have grown to 45 tanks and many different species.


We started out with a few convicts and cribs which my son bought at a local fish auction. In looking for information on the internet on how to spawn them we came across info on native fish. Well this got us excited and we made a few crude nets and went up the street to a small stream. Wow we caught some fish!!! Then it was back home to sign on and see what they were. After getting another tank and trying to duplicate the stream conditions we had a native tank.


We then joined our local fish club. The Breeders Award Program (BAP) looked very interesting. Now we had a reason for our madness. We have spawned many different types of fish and learned a lot. Many of the club members have been very helpful.


This summer we were at Lake Erie and we caught some very interesting fish. The Fundulas diaphanus a native killi fish. We brought home what turned out to be 3 females and 2 males. We set them up in a 20gal. high with lots of plants and a piece of driftwood. A few weeks passed and we observed what we thought was spawning behavior !! We left them in the tank another week then moved the adults to a different tank. We kept watching for fry in the 20 gal. After 3 days there they were, tiny little fish. It is now about a month later and we have approximately 60 fry 1/2 inch long. We are thrilled with the spawning of a wild caught fish.


Seining for native fish

The author and son seining for native fish in Ashtabula Harbor


Next time you pass a creek, think that there are many different species of fish there. Just check your state's laws on collecting and be sure to follow them.


Netting native fish

The author and son at Ashtabula Harbor on Lake Erie in Ohio


The time my son and I have spent together collecting (creek walking) and working in the fish room is priceless. It is a great way to spend time with a kid. Hope you give it a try.


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