this is just out of interest, as i have no plans on keeping convicts however:
ive read so many places that convicts really should be kept on their own (a species tank, not a single fish) as theyre pretty nasty when it comes to any other fish no matter what size, however i see so many photos of convict tanks, and often they include a big plec. wont they bother the plec? or is this one of the few fish that the convicts wont bother? if so is it just any biggish catfish that wont be bothered or is there something specific to plecs that seems to work with convicts?
I know that is mostly true for cichlids.
Do you mean that it is true that they will do well with large catfish, or with plecs? Or that they are best in a species tank only?
Ok, I know I said I had no intention of ever getting convicts, well, when I was looking up information on them with regards to this post, I have become quite interested and am now considering re-working my tank plans to accomodate them :roll:
What I now want to know, is, if they are to breed, are they best kept as pairs? Or will they breed in a group of 4-6 as long as there is a mix of males and females?
They're a pairing fish. Its best to start off with a group of 4-6 juveniles and let them decide who wants to pair up, but once a dominant pair has formed, they will take over and likely kill everyone else off - or at least, harrass them nearly to death. So once you see that a pair has formed, its best to remove everyone else asap.
I will purchase a group of 6 after I find out if my lfs would be willing to take the other 4 off me when a pair forms. I had heard they breed like rabbits, and I knew that they would breed in groups, but it was the agression I worried about so thanks for clearing that up for me.
Sorry to double-post as such, but would you be able to tell me at what age/size they will start pairing off at? Just so I know when to keep a keener eye out for the agression.
theres little need to pair off any two will work from what i've experienced they don't breed like rabbits.......... they breed like cons which is worse i started with two and ended up with hundreds plecos will be left alone if the tank is big enough to allow the cat to stay out of the "nursery area" when breeding when i got them i picked two that were not "paired" but the result was the same
my keyhole ciclids started unpaired and have never paired off despite being tecnicly pairs same doesent work for cons they breed like a council estate family
Thanks for the information. I have found mixed information on whether they're best left to pair up themselves or whether it's best just to get a pair and they definitely will pair up. I'm not taking anyones advice as better than the other here but what I am going to do is get a group of 4-6 youg ones. The reason is that I can find convicts in my lfs and others but I have been unable to find the white ones, and these are the ones I would like. The only place I have been able to find the white ones is online and they are unable to sex them before shipping (I'm nervous about ordering live fish online but willing to give it a go once :? ) so getting a small group of them gives me a good chance of getting at least 1 male and 1 female. I won't do this however until I've spoken with my lfs and know for certain that they would be willing to take the others off me once I have a pair.
I think convicts will be a great fish for me to start with when it comes to breeding cichlids. They don't grow too big like many others and they breed easily so will give me some experience raising fry from eggs and they will be very interesting to watch. My betta recently got the taste of live fry (I stupidly thoguht that my 4 molly fry were now large enough not to be eaten by him - sadly I was wrong as I had planned to grow these to adults) and my boyfriend is getting a turtle which I'm sure will go through huge amounts of any fry. I'm sure y large synodontis would appreciate it as well as an occasional treat. I think breeding the fry myself will be a good way of controlling disease which is usually associated with feeder fish so I'm quite excited about this project :)
Thanks for your help.
Unfortunately, its not always as easy as just picking your male and your female and putting them together. They don't always accept just any mate, I can tell you this from experience. Sometimes it works, sometimes the male decides he doesn't like his arranged marriage ;) Its safest in the long run to buy a group of juveniles like you've decided to do. As for when they'll start pairing off...females can breed at a smaller age, starting at about 1.5" or bigger. Males tend to need more time, around the 2.5-3" mark in my experience. But they can pair off before they're ready to successfully spawn, and the female will likely even start laying infertile eggs before the male is ready.
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