German blue ram questions. - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 4 Old 01-25-2014, 07:35 AM Thread Starter
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German blue ram questions.

So, I just bought a 75 gallon aquarium to transfer my 50 gallon aquarium fish into. I should now have room for a pair of German blue rams. I was looking for some advice about them from people who may already have them.

1. Do they dig a lot? I want to keep live plants and I don't want them uprooted.
2. Do they really "randomly" drop dead sometimes?
3. How would they do with angels?
4. Are petsmart ones really "inferior"? I saw sometimes when I was googling information that the petsmart ones are pumped with hormones to look pretty and will die fast or are inbred and poor quality etc.

Thanks :)

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post #2 of 4 Old 01-25-2014, 11:33 PM
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I've heard about the petsmart thing, but I don't know if it's valid info...may just be people trying to make up stuff to get at them or to get people not to buy them there. Keep in mind that their tanks are all connected, and also they have a provider that provides for more than just THEIR stores....kinda unlikely when you think about it, but it's possible.

Randomly dropping dead? Always a reason, fish was sick, born with a problem, didn't handle the move well or doesn't like the tank parameters...make sure those water parameters are -perfectly- stable before you get them. It's best to try and find an already bonded pair, as bonding a new pair can be difficult and sometimes deadly, they are difficult fish in that sense. Sometimes bonds go well, sometimes they will kill each other after breeding or get depressed in their relationship and die. Also, if a mate dies...quite often the other will follow. This unfortunately happened to my lovely pair, my girl died and my male got depressed and stopped eating shortly afterward and died as well. Sometimes it's good to get two females and a male as occasionally if the male bonds with one and it dies, he's already used to the second female and SOMETIMES it works out...sometimes they wont actually bond into a breeding pair though, but also wont die of what I like to call "Lovebird sickness." This is a sometimes. =)

Messing up plants? Mine never messed with my plants...digging though, they do like to sift. They prefer to have sand substrate, they like to sift for food and may get some benefit from eating small amounts of it. Mine would often hide out in the plants...sometimes they may knock something loose, but shouldn't too often unless they think something tasty is near the roots. They may move them though, or move other small objects...sometimes they build nests with bits of rock, gravel or other objects. lol

Angels....Uh, well, I don't know. I think it depends on your angels. It's not likely your rams will mess with them, they're pretty shy...angels however can be nasty little things sometimes. If they bully them they can stress them out and this can cause them to die, rams get stressed VERY easily when they're picked on, they don't do well with fish that intimidate them.
Also, it depends on the GBR, sometimes you get one who isn't so peaceful. The aggressive ones aren't TOO common(nor are they very rare...right in between), but they happen, and when they do they are real terrors.

These guys are a lot more delicate than you might think, so research them very well, make sure everything is stable, and make sure you have everything they will need(food, substrate, proper tankmates and the like).

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post #3 of 4 Old 01-26-2014, 12:37 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the information!! Hmmm, German Rams seem very sensitive and delicate which concerns me. Even though I try my best to take as good of care of my fish as I can, I like fish that are more forgiving. But they do seem to have interesting personalities which I think I would enjoy watching. It sounds like you need a pair? Would I need to find a male and a female for them to be happy? (And hope they "bond"?)
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post #4 of 4 Old 01-26-2014, 06:49 PM
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You don't need a pair to be happy, single males can do fine, a couple females are often fine too. Females are just as colorful as males, by the way, and you can find them by their pink stomachs...every other way to tell males from females is iffy since they can be just as bright, and even have the poofy tip of the dorsal.

Females CAN show aggression too, so get at least three if you go that way. Though it may be safer(if they get along well and they usually do), than a pair would. If you do want a breeding pair, and they are cool and fun to watch, you could get 2-3 females and one male, he may bond with someone on his own. =)

There are other types of rams that may be a better choice for your tank, especially since you have angels. The Larger Jewel Cichlid may work better(you will have to look into that one though, I only know they get bigger and most ram types are peaceful...I've also seen them kept with angels before, but that doesn't mean one SHOULD). Rams are the smallest of the ram cichlids, they barely hit two inches usually, and some don't get that big. They look bigger with that body shape, but they're more open to being bullied or killed by larger cichlids like angels. Provide a great deal of plants and hiding for them and that will be better.

Oh yes, if you do decide to go with males and females, make sure you have a flat spot in a nice hidden area that will feel secure(like between thick plants, in a vase, by a three-sided blocked off area with tall rocks or they like a flat spot to breed, though they may MAKE one if you don't provide one, or may make one anyways...and then both parents raise the eggs and the babies themselves. This is another reason it may not be a good idea to have them with angels...the rams will try to defend the babies from them if they decide to get too close or decide the babies are food. This can cause injuries or death to either side.

Provided proper conditions...they're quite lovely, and not that delicate. But they do, like many, have specific needs that must be followed.

Turning on the Aquarium lamp in the morning is MY cup of coffee.
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