Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   Ram cichlid: Which will match my water parameters (http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/cichlids/ram-cichlid-will-match-my-water-30489/)

andrewr2488 10-13-2009 03:21 PM

Ram cichlid: Which will match my water parameters
 
My Readings:
pH - 7.6
NH3/NH4+ (Ammonia) - 0.50
NO2- (Nitrite) - 0 ppm (mgL)
NO3- (Nitrate) - 0ppm (mgL)

I'm not sure what ram would go well in my amazon community tank. Ive had recommendations for the bolivian ram, But as far as i know none of the lfs carry that fish. I've looked on internet fish stores and i'm not sure how I'd get a pair? My local petco sells Blue Rams, And I'm sure i could get them to match a pair for me. Currently I have a 55g Long aquarium, But i'm having problems with hard water/lime residue that is very hard headed. I've tried everything to remove it. If it does not come off i'll be trashing it in favor of a 56g tall aquarium. it will be heavily planted with a school of neon tetras, and some corys on the bottom. i have a few peices of driftwood also. Thanks for ya'lls help

MoneyMitch 10-13-2009 08:20 PM

you should actually post this in the cichlids section of the forum you will get better help there since this is more General aquarium stuff rather than specif fish issues/questions

andrewr2488 10-14-2009 02:35 PM

Yeah i just realized where i posted this, i was in a hurry.. ill see if i cant get it moved

Fishin Pole 10-14-2009 04:34 PM

Dont add any fish till you get your ammonia to "0"..................

Byron 10-14-2009 04:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by andrewr2488 (Post 256875)
My Readings:
pH - 7.6
NH3/NH4+ (Ammonia) - 0.50
NO2- (Nitrite) - 0 ppm (mgL)
NO3- (Nitrate) - 0ppm (mgL)

I'm not sure what ram would go well in my amazon community tank. Ive had recommendations for the bolivian ram, But as far as i know none of the lfs carry that fish. I've looked on internet fish stores and i'm not sure how I'd get a pair? My local petco sells Blue Rams, And I'm sure i could get them to match a pair for me. Currently I have a 55g Long aquarium, But i'm having problems with hard water/lime residue that is very hard headed. I've tried everything to remove it. If it does not come off i'll be trashing it in favor of a 56g tall aquarium. it will be heavily planted with a school of neon tetras, and some corys on the bottom. i have a few peices of driftwood also. Thanks for ya'lls help

First comment is, get a long not a tall aquarium for South American fish. In such a geographic aquascape you will obviously have shoaling fish like characins (any of the tetras, pencilfish, hatchets) and catfish like Corydoras or their related genera Aspidoras and Brochis. All of these are better displayed with more natural behaviours in a long tank; some like to swim "lengths" if you like. Also, with dwarf cichlids you can have a pair and if the tank is long two or three pairs, different species is nice. The males establish territories, and in a long tank they can set up suitable spaces that you can mark off with wood, plants, rocks. Aside from the aesthetics, there is the water surface where the gas exchange occurs; more surface (long tanks) means healthier water in that respect. More fish can be housed in a long as opposed to a tall tank of the same volume.

Now to the rams. With a pH of 7.6 and (more importantly) moderately hard water (which I would expect, but not for certain), the common (blue) ram will not live long. The original fish, now scientifically known as Mikrogeophagus ramirezi [it has gone through I believe 4 name changes since first named by Meyers & Harry in 1948], occurs in warm acidic streams in the savannas of the Orinoco basin in Venezuela and Columbia. Typical water parameters are pH 5.1, hardness less than 1 degree, and a water temperature of 83F in the early morning on a "cool" day. Although the fish usually available in stores (with few exceptions) are now commercially raised, not wild caught, this fish has not abandonned its strict requirements for water parameters close to its native habitat. Some fish from similar waters do adjust over time, but this beautiful species has not. Unless you can provide similar water permanently, this fish will likely not live long.

By contrast, the Bolivian Ram can adapt to your water or to tanks like mine which are near-identical to what the M. ramirezi requires. This fish has also gone through several name changes since Haseman first described it in 1911; Sven Kullander's decision to establish the genus Mikrogeophagus [spelt with the "k"] in 2003 is now accepted as the valid scientific name, Mikrogeophagus altispinosus. This fish occurs in acidic water and basic (alkaline) waters in parts of SW Brazil, the Mato Grosso region, in the Rio Mamore/Rio Guapore systems. Telling male and female in young fish is not easy; as they mature, the male deveops considerably longer extensions on his caudal fin. The interesting thing about this species is that they do very well as individual specimens in aquaria. Horst Linke reported that in their native habitat, these fish appear to live in solitude apart from spawning periods. In a large enough tank (4+ feet), 3 or 4 fish will get along quite well, since they have room to establish their territories; in your 55g 2 or 3 would be fine. You can find more information from this article, which just happens to be written by an acquaintance who is extremely knowledgeable on cichlids, Lee Newman, Curator of Tropical Fishes at the Vancouver Aquarium and Marine Science Centre. Lee has collected many species in SA and spawned them in his aquaria; this article originally appeared in the Journal of the American Cichlid Association.
The Cichlid Room Companion - Keeping and Breeding the Bolivian Ram, <i>Microgeophagus altispinosa</i> (Haseman, 1911)

Byron.

andrewr2488 10-15-2009 01:28 PM

Thank you again B.
Thank you for moving to correct section aunt kymmie!!

do you think this new species of ram cichlid would do well? I'm using prime water conditioner.
its a electric blue ram cichlid i am pretty sure its not a natural species. im not sure if it has the same water needs as the blue ram or anything.. ill try to find out
http://www.aquascapeonline.com/Thumb...ate=false&WM=T

Byron 10-15-2009 02:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by andrewr2488 (Post 257784)
Thank you again B.
Thank you for moving to correct section aunt kymmie!!

do you think this new species of ram cichlid would do well? I'm using prime water conditioner.
its a electric blue ram cichlid i am pretty sure its not a natural species. im not sure if it has the same water needs as the blue ram or anything.. ill try to find out
http://www.aquascapeonline.com/Thumb...ate=false&WM=T

This is one of the mutants or whatever bred from the common (natural) ram. From what I've read, it shares the same sensitivity to water as the others, but someone who has it may know differently.

Aside from the pH, it is the temperature issue; keeping these little fish comfortable means 82F water, and there are a number of other fish that simply cannot last long in such warm water, such as most of the corydoras (C. sterbai is one that tolerates warmer temps), many of the tetras also cannot fare well long-term because they burn too much energy trying to function and the oxygen is less, etc; cardinals and rummy nose do well warmer, but they are also more prone to internal problms in harder water, like the rams.

B.

aunt kymmie 10-15-2009 02:32 PM

Can we call it a hybrid? The term mutant always freaks me out. :lol:
This fish reminds me of a blue diamond discus, same eye and body coloring, but a completely different body & fin shape. Cool looking fish.

Byron 10-15-2009 02:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aunt kymmie (Post 257829)
Can we call it a hybrid? The term mutant always freaks me out. :lol:
This fish reminds me of a blue diamond discus, same eye and body coloring, but a completely different body & fin shape. Cool looking fish.

Yes, I had thought I'd read that this was one of those genetically altered fish again, but can't find it now, maybe it was the balloon ram I'm thinking of... anyway, my check with the Chichlid forum indicates it is bred similar to the gold ram; still finicky though. B.

Jack Middleton 10-16-2009 03:50 AM

i wouldn't call it a hybrid, as a hybrid is a cross breed of two species, i would use the term, 'genetic varient'


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