Odd Ecosphere Fish Situation

Esj

Hi,
I haven't had an aquarium for a few years due to various circumstances although I always intended to get another one when possible. In the meantime, about 1.5 years ago I set up an ecosphere, by filling a large sealed container with some substrate and pond water and plants. For the last year and a half a lot of pond weed and other plants have grown and there are a lot of snails and other minuscule creatures that dart about. I haven't opened the container in over a year, it is self sustaining.
Now, yesterday, I moved the ecosphere and something a bit larger started swimming about. It was a fish. I don't know how it got in there, what specie it is, or what I should do with it. I've got a few photos I'll share to help. I never intended to keep fish in this sort of small, unfiltered tank but I don't know if its right to release him into a pond, or if he'll survive in the tank.
Anyway, I thought I'd share the interesting story, ask for maybe some identification of the fish and what people think I should do. Photos aren't the best as the containers curved and densely planted and the fish is small.
Thanks!
Edit ~ extra info, I dont know what ammonia nitrite or nitrates are as I've not opened the tank but it supports some life so I'm assuming probably okay, and the fish seems pretty happy for now.
 

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mattgirl

If this fish has been in this container for all this time I wouldn't do anything. I wouldn't take it out and put it back in the pond. I suspect it would quickly die if you did that. It is acclimated to life in this jar.

I suspect there was a fish egg in the pond water or on the plants you started this jar with.
 
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StarGirl

This is so cool. It is crazy a egg would be in there for a year before hatching.
 
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mattgirl

This is so cool. It is crazy a egg would be in there for a year before hatching.
I have to think the egg hatched soon after being put in there. It may have been easy to overlook since it would have been so tiny and we wouldn't have been looking since we wouldn't expect a fish to show up if we didn't put one in there. I suspect it would have grown very slowly and wouldn't have gotten very big since it was never fed. It wasn't spied until the jar was moved. Maybe moving the jar got the little guy more active. It is pretty much a miracle for it to have hatched and survived under these conditions. I am impressed with its will to live. :)
 
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Esj

Okay in that case I may just let him be, my initial reaction was that I should release him due to the conditions but I'm perfectly happy to keep him if that's what the advice is, its exactly why I checked here first. If I see him start to struggle I'll come and ask again and revaluate.
Do you think I should open the tank to add any food or other items. It may just add an unnecessary source of waste in a small tank with not many feeders or filtration and just build up ammonia, and he may just be happy snacking on whatever else lives in there. Say if he's survived this long I'm guessing he's not too fussed.
It is a weird and interesting situation and one I was not expecting to find myself in which is why I was so surprised and unsure of what to do, either way I think its mad that he's hatched and lived in there!
 
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mattgirl

Okay in that case I may just let him be, my initial reaction was that I should release him due to the conditions but I'm perfectly happy to keep him if that's what the advice is, its exactly why I checked here first. If I see him start to struggle I'll come and ask again and revaluate.
Do you think I should open the tank to add any food or other items. It may just add an unnecessary source of waste in a small tank with not many feeders or filtration and just build up ammonia, and he may just be happy snacking on whatever else lives in there. Say if he's survived this long I'm guessing he's not too fussed.
It is a weird and interesting situation and one I was not expecting to find myself in which is why I was so surprised and unsure of what to do, either way I think its mad that he's hatched and lived in there!
To be perfectly honest I wouldn't change a thing. This little miracle has been living in there for over a year. If it wasn't getting what it needs it wouldn't have made it. I do fear any change could do more harm than good.
 
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StarGirl

To be perfectly honest I wouldn't change a thing. This little miracle has been living in there for over a year. If it wasn't getting what it needs it wouldn't have made it. I really think in this case changes aren't the best for it. I do fear any change could do more harm than good.
Thats what I was thinking also. Like when fish are shipped and you open the bag and the ammonia rises.
 
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StarGirl

How is the little dude doing? I am so curious of this little bugger!
 
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Esj

He's just swimming about, seeming perfectly fine. He tends to hide very well which isn't surprising but I've seen him peck at a few things he considers food.
 
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Debbie1986

my only concern is that his food source will not procreate fast enough for his appetite as he grows.

does the jar eco system show insects?

I'd also reach out to Serpa Designs on you tube - he does a lot of eco systems ( jars etc) and may have heard of this.
 
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mattgirl

my only concern is that his food source will not procreate fast enough for his appetite as he grows.

does the jar eco system show insects?

I'd also reach out to Serpa Designs on you tube - he does a lot of eco systems ( jars etc) and may have heard of this.
If I am understanding the timeline this fish has already lived in this jar for well over a year. I suspect it has already grown as big as it is going to. I agree the living conditions are not ideal for a fish but it happened. I don't know how it is possible for it to have survived in these conditions. I suspect any changes at this point will doom this little guy to death since it has acclimated to life in a closed jar. I know I would not try to change its living conditions in any way.
 
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veggieshark

I wouldn't change anything like others said.

It looks like some kind of ricefish. Is the tail forked?

The jar you used looks great. If was not an ecosystem, would make water change so easy. Through an the under gravel filter.
 
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Debbie1986

If I am understanding the timeline this fish has already lived in this jar for well over a year. I suspect it has already grown as big as it is going to. I agree the living conditions are not ideal for a fish but it happened. I don't know how it is possible for it to have survived in these conditions. I suspect any changes at this point will doom this little guy to death since it has acclimated to life in a closed jar. I know I would not try to change its living conditions in any way.
I get that and I read what you said.

again, my concern is the food source which is undetermined by original post

and by reaching out to someone who does eco systems routinely, how does that hurt in any way?
I myself would want all possible info and would seek out someone who does eco system routinely for such info.

tank eco systems crash all the time, so too can a closed eco system

I'm just not really sure why anyone would try to stop seeking more info on the subject.

Tanner at Serpa Designs does break down his jar periodically so he'd know a bit more about the life cycle of enclosed animals though he usually only does bugs etc

my suggestion was done for a very distinct reason - expertise vs casual observation

I think he'd find this very interesting and can offer good pointers. But hey, I'm just a you tube junkie that watches closed eco system jar habitates on occasion. I'm not an expert like Tanner...
 
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mattgirl

I get that and I read what you said.

again, my concern is the food source which is undetermined by original post

and by reaching out to someone who does eco systems routinely, how does that hurt in any way?
I myself would want all possible info and would seek out someone who does eco system routinely for such info.

tank eco systems crash all the time, so too can a closed eco system

I'm just not really sure why anyone would try to stop seeking more info on the subject.

Tanner at Serpa Designs does break down his jar periodically so he'd know a bit more about the life cycle of enclosed animals though he usually only does bugs etc

my suggestion was done for a very distinct reason - expertise vs casual observation

I think he'd find this very interesting and can offer good pointers. But hey, I'm just a you tube junkie that watches closed eco system jar habitates on occasion. I'm not an expert like Tanner...
I do agree with you. We can always benefit from gathering all the information possible. My main point was I really don't think the fish is going to grow bigger since it has been in this jar for well over a year already.
 
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emilymg

This is so cool, and I agree that taking it out or moving it would probably do more harm than good. If it’s been in there for that long it enjoys your setup. Such an interesting ecosphere though, it looks awesome!
 
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Esj

Just an update for anyone interested, I was away for a few weeks and have just got back. He's been left unsupervised and untampered with this month so was a little worried on return but he is looking good! He's certainly grown a bit not that he is massive now but there's a noticeable difference and seems healthy!
 
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mattgirl

This really is an amazing thing to witness. I have to think this little guy is getting all it needs. There is no way it would have survived all this time if it didn't. Did we ever determine what kind of fish it is?
 
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Esj

Not yet unfortunately, now that he's slightly larger I might try and get some better photos to see if anyone has any guesses but my phones camera isn't amazing and the glass is thick and very curved which also distorts it a bit.
 
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