Help me sex these Kribs. (Pics)
I asked for 3 Females and 1 Male... not so sure that's what I got.
Pretty much 100% sure this one is a male.
Here are the 3 I'm not so sure about....
The very last one I'm thinking is a female. The other 2 have really pointy, although not so swooped dorsal and anal fins... but the tails look to be rounded like a females.
The problem I'm having is all 4 of these guys are being pretty hostile with one another. They are constantly picking and chasing. Especially the big boy up top. Occasionally #4 will flare it's fins when the others come around, and it is very seldom picked on. I know they will have a period of establishing territory, but I'm starting to worry about #2. You can see how it's stomach is sunk in some. It wasn't like that when I put it in the tank, but it's been chased constantly for a week, and gets bullied often. Not sure it's getting it's fill during dinner time either.
Also, is it possible for them to be too old to pair? These were listed as "Medium Kribs" but each of them is around 4 inches or so long. I can't get a good perspective for the length of them in the tank... each is 3 to 4 inches easily though if you include tail.
I believe the first two photos to be possibly males and the third and fourth photos to be females. The last photo almost certain to be female.Providing plenty of places for fish to claim as their territory should help with aggression. I like four inch clay (terra cotta), flower pots laid on their sides at different areas of the aquarium. Pieces of pvc pipe ,and or elbows ,either glued to flat pieces of slate with aquarium safe silicone or placed on the gravel with flat rocks to hold them down also work well. The ideal tank in my view, would be entirely cluttered with such places.
Fish will establish a pecking order and a pair will no doubt form if male and female(s) are present. Others may be able to stay in the tank if plenty of places such as those mentioned exist ,or some may have to be removed if a pair forms.
Genetic makeup of cichlids is to establish and hold territory. If tank is large enough for all fish to hold a small area,then this may allow several to coexist. If tank is not of sufficient size in THEIR view, then moving fish may be only option.
Sometimes ,lowering the temp a little can curb aggressive behaivor but if breeding is on their mind,cichlids will assert themselves to claim the right to spawn with perspective females.
hope some of this helps.
It helps a great deal, thanks!
The tank is a 46 bowfront. I have a few cichlid stones in there as you can see in my aquarium profile. The problem is the big male (#1) has claimed about 3/4 of the tank. He chases and bullies #2 and #3. Then #3 will also chase and bully #2. It seems #4 just kind of hangs out. I'm honestly thinking about returning #2 as things aren't lookin good for him, and I have nowhere to give him a permanent home, just a couple of 10s for fry and QT.
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Why do you think the 2nd fish is male? It looks to me that the 2nd 3rd and 4th are all female, due to the shorter dorsal fin but I could be wrong! Most males have a dorsal fin that extends backwards over the caudal fin as you can see in pic one, but I don't see that happening with the 2nd fish.
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I think 1077 gave some great advice, not sure why you are out on the forum asking for more... ?
The only thing I will add to this discussion is that it sounds like you need a lot more decor in your tank so these fish can establish territory safely. "A few cichlid rocks" is not going to be enough territory for that many fish in a 46 bowfront tank, I can assure you of that. Any space between 2 solid objects is a territory, any cave or opening is a territory. If things are spaced out and not enough solid pieces or plants divide up the space, each open space is 1 territory that 1 fish is going to claim and defend. Thats what it sounds like is happening, from what I have read here. A cichlid tank, as 1077 has already said, should be heavily "cluttered" to provide plenty of territory.
My contribution to the debate of male/female... I would say the last photo was positively female, the first photo positively male, and the other 2 could be female or sub males, which would account for the fact that they don't quite match up with the obvious male or female. When dealing with most cichlids, there will be 1 dominant male in a tank, no matter how many fish are there... the other males will tend to have less color, be more timid towards that dominant male, or subject of attacks from the dominant male. The same thing somewhat applies with females... if more than one, you will get 1 dominant female... and if she pairs with a male, she can be even more aggressive than he can, especially during spawning.
If you fix the decor/territory situation, the thin fish should have an easier time finding food. Remember that decorating the upper 1/2 of the tank is also important, so either tall plants (live or fake no matter) or something that floats and fills in some space in the upper 1/2 would work well. The more decor you get into the tank the better chance all fish have of finding plenty of food. Also, don't put all of the food in one place at feeding time. Divide up the portion and drop it into 4 places so each fish can target a spot another hasn't claimed. If one fish gobbles its fill and races on to steal another's food... then drop a little more in yet another area near the fish that is having trouble getting to food. You'll have to play with it a little bit til you get a feel for it.
Hope this helps to set you at ease about the info you're getting from 1077. I find it to be very sound and good advice.
Good luck to you!
I believe 1 and 2 are males and 3 and 4 are female. 2 definitely seems to be the sub-dominant male. Very sunken stomach on that one so I would consider it a priority to make sure he's getting enough to eat. More decor would definitely be a big help, especially with more caves.
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