You can currently join our fish program. We are still preparing for other groups of animals (snails, shrimps, crabs) – but if you are interested in being there from the beginning, do not hesitate to contact us.

If you don't know exactly what conservation breeding in aquariums is, read this article first. In short, it is a network of breeders who selflessly cooperate with the aim of maintaining viable insurance populations of endangered species in aquariums.

Below you will find information about the specific fish we work with. The guidelines of our fish program and information for those interested in joining can be found here.

Conservation breeding of Sulawesi fish

Four different groups of Sulawesi endemic fish are kept in aquariums:

  • Telmatherinidae (sailfin silversides)
  • Adrianichthyidae (ricefishes)
  • Zenarchopteridae (viviparous halfbeaks)
  • Gobiidae (gobies)

For the first three groups, the goal of our conservation breeding program is to monitor their aquarium populations and build a network of breeders who work together to maintain healthy populations over the long term. The following species / populations are currently managed under the program (and we are looking for more):

Program members:
Zoo Ostrava (CZ), Kristýna Bendová (CZ), Gunnar Loibl (DE)

Breeder’s challenge: gobies

Gobies (Gobiidae) from the lakes of Sulawesi have never been bred under aquarium conditions. Some species spawn easily, but rearing the tiny larvae is extremely difficult and even experienced goby breeders have not yet succeeded. These species are endangered and the fact that we are unable to breed them in aquariums and maintain an insurance population ex situ (out of reach of invasive fish) is worrying. So we are not discouraging you from obtaining them, but the following considerations are crucial:
  • these are fish for serious breeders, not “an interesting addition to your aquarium”
  • accept that all individuals available in the trade come from the wild
  • before buying fish, study their requirements and all available information
  • make sure you get both sexes
  • keep them in a species tank or in a setup where they would not be disturbed by other fish inhabiting the same zone and which would allow them to behave naturally
  • replicate the conditions in their natural environment (especially high temperatures)
  • start serious work with the culture of various microorganisms (potential prey for larvae)
  • carefully document your breeding attempts
  • connect with other breeders and exchange experiences, consult your progress and share details of what you tried and how it worked (negative experience is also worth sharing)
  • this is not a competition between breeders; this is a race against time to give the Sulawesi gobies a chance to survive at least in aquariums should the conditions in their lakes deteriorate (and this is gradually happening)
If you are ready to join our gobies task force, here's a list of species available (albeit rarely) in the trade:
  • Glossogobius flavipinnis NT
  • Mugilogobius adeia EN
  • Mugilogobius hitam NT
  • Mugilogobius latifrons EN
  • Mugilogobius rexi NT
  • Mugilogobius sarasinorum EN

We are currently actively working with the Mugilogobius adeia and Mugilogobius sarasinorum species. If you are keeping any Sulawesi goby yourself, please contact us! We can help each other.

A complete overview of endemic freshwater fish of Sulawesi (including those not commercially available or not yet managed in our program) can be found here.

If you are interested in joining the program, you can find information about the guidelines and the application form here.

The contact email of Conservation breeding program for Sulawesi fish is