06-03-2009, 04:42 AM
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If it is the bolivian ram you are contemplating, they will do fine in freshwater and poorly in brackish water. Fine gravel or sand would be my choice. Driftwood also would look nice with some small caves made from rock. (no live rock). Slate or flagstone would be my choice. If Your pH is between 6.0 and 7.8 the Bolivian rams will do fine with weekly water changes of 25 percent using a good dechlorinator for new water before it goes in the tank. For tankmates, I would look at possibly five or six SMALL tetras such as pristella,bloodfin, or silver tipped.
If it is the german blue or gold ram you are talking about then pH must fall in my view, between 6.0 and 7.0 with soft water with KH or carbonate hardness of not much more than five for longterm health and successful spawning. Temp for blue and gold rams 80 to 86 degrees. this will limit suitable tankmates and or plants. These fish are very sensitive to deteriorating water conditions, and were it me, I would try and keep nitrAtes below 20 with water changes. They do not tolerate any detectable levels of ammonia or nitrites. Good luck with which ever species you decide on.
In a new tank ,, I would start with the bolivian ram and then perhaps as I became more confident in keeping water parameters at optimum levels,, I would attempt the german blue or gold variety of this little cichlid.