Spotted Rainbowfish - Glossolepis maculosus
Spotted Rainbowfish - Glossolepis maculosus

Spotted Rainbowfish - Glossolepis maculosus

The Spotted Rainbowfish was scientifically described by Allen in 1981. Its scientific name is Glossolepis maculosus. The species was found in 1979 by Crockford, who encountered it in the Omsis River.

The Spotted Rainbowfish can reach a length of roughly 6 cm (2.3 inches). The main body colour is greenish or bronze, but a part of the sides are bright yellow. The body is normally adorned with up to eight big black dots along the sides.

Geographical distribution, habitat and conservation
The Spotted Rainbowfish lives in streams and swampy environments in the northern parts of Papua New Guinea. It has been encountered in the river systems of Markham and Ramu, including the Omsis River which is a tributary to Markham. Within the Ramu river system, Spotted Rainbowfish has been found in both swamps and creeks. The Spotted Rainbowfish lives at elevations of 150-800 meters (33-2625 feet). It inhabits clear slow-flowing creeks and swampy environments with plenty of aquatic plants.

The Spotted Rainbowfish is listed as “Lower Risk: least concern” in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

Keeping Spotted Rainbowfish in aquariums
The Spotted Rainbowfish is not tricky to keep, and since it is also very beautiful it has turned into an appreciated aquarium fish even outside Australia. A small 30 litre (8 gallons) aquarium is big enough to house a group consisting of five specimens. The Spotted Rainbow is also kept in community aquariums, but should never be combined with aggressive species.

Try to resemble the natural habitat of the Spotted Rainbowfish in the aquarium and include areas of densely grown aquatic plants. Keep the temperature in the 23-28 degrees C (73-82 degrees F) range. The water should be alkaline, from pH 7.5 to 7.8. Strong currents are not recommended, since the Spotted Rainbowfish is used to slow-flowing waters in the wild.

It is important to provide your Spotted Rainbowfish with a varied and nutritious diet in the aquarium. You can for instance combine dry prepared foods with frequent servings of live food such as brine shrimp.  

Breeding Spotted Rainbowfish
The Spotted Rainbowfish has been successfully bred in both groups and pairs. This species reaches sexual maturity when it is roughly 3-4 cm (1- 1.5 inches) long and this length can be attained at an age of 6 months if the fish is kept in favourable conditions and provided with a nutritious diet. 

When breeding this fish in groups, always keep at least 2-3 females for each male since the males can harass the females quite violently during courtship. When breeding in pairs, make sure that the female has a lot of hiding spots in the aquarium where she can relax.

If you want to coax your Spotted Rainbowfish into breeding, serve them plenty of live meaty food and provide them with a suitable spawning medium, e.g. densely grown java moss or spawning mops.

In order to avoid predation, it is safest to move the spawning medium with the eggs to a separate container after spawning. If you keep the water temperature in the upper part of the recommended range, you can expect the eggs to hatch after roughly 9 days. You can feed your fry infusoria and finely ground flake food until they are big enough to devour newly hatched brine shrimp and nibble on whole flakes.  

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