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Author Topic: Some species are better kept in odd numbers  (Read 12606 times)
PuntiusFanaticoma
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« on: September 07, 2010, 07:06:24 AM »

I know this probably isn't a myth, a fair few members have said that some schooling/grouping fishes fare better when kept in odd numbers, except maybe 3 and 5. I would simply like to know if there is a science behind this intriguing fact. And, also, by your experience, what species would be one of those that enjoy being in an odd numbered group? Loaches, tetras, cichlids, catfish, barbs, rasboras all count. There is no speciesism here.
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Karen
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« Reply #1 on: September 07, 2010, 07:48:24 AM »

In the wild fish schools are made up of many, many individuals.  Not 6 or 7.  Even or odd number is irrelevant.  Some species school in groups as small as a few dozen and others have schools of a few hundred thousand.  Six is not, and will never be a school.  Its enough fish that some schooling behavior can be observed and a small enough number that the fish can realistically be housed in a typical person's aquarium.

Ask anyone that has ever had a school of 45 danios... I assure you, the behavior is VERY different that the 6 or 8 typically recommended.
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« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2010, 10:56:29 AM »

I have seen no difference with barbs, tetras, or danios with even/odd numbers. Endlers aren't technically schooling, but they didn't seem to care either. I have read other folks who insist they can see the difference in their fish, but I have never personally experienced this.
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PuntiusFanaticoma
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« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2010, 01:00:12 PM »

Ditto on me. I originally had nine tiger barbs. One jumped ship in search of bluer pastures. The reaminning 8 are just as gregarious. They keep themselves to themselves.
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MRM
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« Reply #4 on: September 07, 2010, 01:00:34 PM »

I know where this is coming from. Ashraf there is no science to back my claims when it comes to odd numbers with the various botia species. However, when I first started getting into loaches we had a number of members that actively kept them. Jessica, who was the loach queen stated that she kept hers in odd numbered groups because she observed a behavioral difference. When I got my first Yo-Yos I got 4 of them because that was all the store had. They were very placid not swimming around all over the place like their behaviors were described. When I upped the group to seven they became much more interactive. I have since attempted to keep all my loach groups in odd number pairings. I have talked with other loach keepers and many have also observed this difference. Hence the advice on stocking.
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« Reply #5 on: September 07, 2010, 01:09:59 PM »

I suspect the difference is far more related to elevated numbers than an odd/ even number situation. 
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« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2010, 08:48:10 PM »

Only with loaches,and its nothing more than than my own observation.And yes I first read it on this site.It seems to work better.Guarantee Karen is right,if you had a big enough number it wouldnt matter.
My own observation with the loaches is with even #s they "pair off" and pester thier "partner" all the time.With an odd # they keep recombining in groups of 2 and 3 to play.Science?no.
But I keep buying loaches in odd #s even if its just superstition. Smiley
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PuntiusFanaticoma
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« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2010, 10:11:51 PM »

And this has only been observed in loach species? May I ask what species in particular?
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« Reply #8 on: September 08, 2010, 07:08:53 AM »

Yes just in the loaches. I have observed it with Yo-Yo loaches, botia striata, and sids.
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« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2011, 11:06:38 PM »

I've never seen THIS before lol. I have had schools of both even and odd numbers, and I've never seen any difference between the two. Happy fish keeping Smiley
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