Itching to put livebearers outside. - Aquarium Forum
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-26-2016, 10:46 PM Thread Starter
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Arrow Itching to put livebearers outside.

It's still a bit cold so I'm trying to figure out ways to warm up the water outside. My initial thoughts are to build a solar cover for the pond like a green house. Trap in the sunlight. Next I'm thinking if I bury the stock tank it would keep earth temp? Has anyone ever buried a stock tank like this? I'm worried about pressure from the ground? Am I crazy to worry about that?

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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 12:13 AM
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Re: Itching to put livebearers outside.

I've not sunk one in the groud but I half a dozen in use each season. I also use kiddie pools-You can find notes from the last few years looking at Breeding fish in Kiddie pools and stock tanks.

You could use a solor set up, but it will run you a good chucnk of change. I have used, sometimes together other times not, sub tank heaters 200W or 250 heat lamps like they use for baby chickens. If you want to cheat winter, just construct a box structure that goes almost to the water surfance and hang the heat lamp through the middle. That will draw the fish in and all will be an inch or so under water under the lamp. The fish stay in that area as the water gets increasingly cold as you move out of the box. You can sink a couple of 200W tank heaters through the same hole as the light fixture. With stock tanks keeping the water level 4-6 inches from the top allows the lights to spread the heat further.

Early stocking or late havest really depends on what fish your stocking. Least Killies can take the temps all year as long as water doesn't freeze solid. Endlers are able to take the chill as well. Once water temps hit mid-60s turn on the heat lamps and stock in a few brooder males and females. I try to wait for several nice days in a row and have the heaters and lights running 24/7 before stocking the Endlers. I increase my growing season by 3-4 weeks in the spring and extend it 3-4 in fall. Next come the mollys. Either race of sailfins can handle the colder temps, same set up same procedure. Platys are a bit tougher than swords, but water temps have to be in the low 70 range regardless of using heat or not. Fry born outdoors somehow go straight to the lights in the fall. In an 8'x8' kiddie pool I had over 1,200 Chilli Endlers crowded into an area where two lights hung suspended by 2"x4"s.

Last bit of advice, understand the numbers if all goes right. Those Chilli Endlers started with 15-18 brooder females and 6 males. My Black Bars started with 12f / 6m=850, Red Sunset Mollys, 10-12f / 4m=680. I add Least Killies to every pool and this helps in the production of the gold varient. Just cull and you will find them. I also dumped 12 Red Cherry Shrimp in my Least Killie / Blue Crayfish pool. I forgot to do it so they only had about 3 months. To my shock I pulled out around 50 all huge and all with blood red color. These were not high quality reds to start with, so go figure. They remained outside until the water temps were close to 50f before I brought them in-Note I didn't realize they were even there in the 110"x72" pool and discovered them when I was wrapping up for the season.

Hope this helps. If you have questions just P.M. me or keep the thread going.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 10:31 AM
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Re: Itching to put livebearers outside.

Originally Posted by Corywm View Post
I'm worried about pressure from the ground? Am I crazy to worry about that?
You aren't crazy to worry about it. However, once it is buried and filled, the water pressure pushing out should severely reduce the ground pressure pushing in. While I would not do it with glass (getting it filled in properly might put too much pressure in 1 spot, or water changes might cause a rock to push too hard on a single spot, causing the glass to shatter), most plastic should be fine.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-01-2016, 08:23 PM
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Re: Itching to put livebearers outside.

Dig on if you must. Good luck either way
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-19-2016, 05:55 PM
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Re: Itching to put livebearers outside.

My livebearers in their outdoor tanks are doing great at this point like every year for that matter. Currently swimming in those tanks are xiphophorus pygmaeus, least killifish, ginga rubra blonde, blue star endlers, limegreen endlers, ameca splendens, chocolate mollies, phalloceros caudimaculatus reticulata, el tigre endlers and a mix of guppies.

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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-20-2016, 11:12 PM
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Re: Itching to put livebearers outside.


You're across the pond from us states folk. I'm in Missouri, mid-west and it is time to get fish out doors with back up heat lamps just in case. Luck for me I'm behind schedule as usual because we got 6" of rain in a 24 hour period and thousands of frog eggs got battered and died off. Big mess but just about cleaned up. Brooders coming in next week.
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