Since I live in Bali, only three hours drive from the best ornamental marine fish breeder in the world, I get to visit him on a regular basis. Mr. Wen-Ping Su has been breaking the news of all aquarium related media for the last month, with a plethora of new breeding breakthrough and world’s firsts.
Zebrasoma xanthurum , Purple tang:
A few years after another group managed to breed the yellow tang, Zebrasoma flavescens, Mr Wen-Ping Su had a go at the same family and managed his own break through with rearing some Purple tangs. The first one already hit the US and European markets, several weeks back. When I visited over a month ago, the first captive bred purple tangs were too small to catch and photograph. Juvenile fish are very fragile, and catching or flashing them can just kill them but he retained one specimen so I could come back and take a picture of this stunning fish.
At that point, he was just getting started, and within a couple of weeks, he got two more new species of Angelfish.
Paracentropyge venustus angelfish, is not a very common species. Its a smaller size, cryptic Angelfish, so it has a great potential for reef tanks. And these small half and inch fish are absolutely irresistible!
Within a week of announcing the venustus angel, Mr Wen-Ping Su announced another breakthrough with one of the remaining angelfish genus, the regal angelfish, Pygoplites diacanthus. Juveniles of this species are probably the cutest little fish we’ve ever seen. This 1/2 inch long little beauty is probably the one of the most memorable fish we’ve seen this year. The fact that it was very cooperative and let us take easily has many shots as we wanted was a real delight.
There was another premiere waiting for us, the rock beauty, Holacanthus tricolor, however an ich infection wiped out the first batch because temperatures in Bali have been abnormally low. And a hot sunny day, followed by a cold night, creates some unusual temperature swings, and treating these very small juvenile fish is tricky, and part of the risk in this job. You can loose full batch of fish overnight.
As of today, Bali Aquarich has been producing no fewer than 18 different species of Angelfish, 2 Batfish, and an infinite variety of clownfish which is a monumental achievement.
Without forgetting some beautiful hybrids such as this Apolemichthys xanthopunctatus X A. trimaculatus:
So now the list of captive bred fish is getting longer and longer, there is already enough diversity to populate tanks with only with captive bred fish.
Annularis, Clarion, Maze, Scribbled, Passer, A.trimaculatus, Majestic, Lemonpeel, Golden spotted, Eibli, Koran, Personnifer, Zonipectus, Six bar, Multibar, Maculosus, venustus and regal, just to name of few being cultured at Bali Aquarich alone.
We can expect the list of captive bred fish to grow quickly even faster, as Mr Wen-Ping Su transformed his farm to accommodate smaller batch of fish. He built a proper algae room, and now has a building dedicated to the production of copepods. With three different strains of rotifers, two different species of copepods, and over 10 different species of algaes, he’s got what it takes now to breed even more species. stay tuned, more will come soon!