Unidentified Cichlids • festae or urophthalmus ?

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festae or urophthalmus ?

Postby musica123 » Fri Jan 27, 2012 2:48 am

Hello everyone, I just recently joined the community and this is my first post here. To say im new might be an understatement because i've know about this site and have been creeping around.

Anyways, i finally decided to officially join because I just bought two new fish that i was told were "red terrors" by my LFS. The guy who caught the fish for me told me that he knew there were false and true red terrors but he didnt know how to tell the difference. I bought two, hoping to get a pair. I have a three day period to return the fish for store credit so hopefully you guys can help identify them for me before then.

here's the pic of the one that Im hoping is a male (his dorsal and annal fin is actually a little longer than the pic make it out to be)

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here's the pic for the one im hoping is a female

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forgot to mention, if you guys are able to sex them that would be great. if you notice, on the "males" left side and the "females" right side, their vertical bars merge( te male was faded out so the pic dosn't sow it clearly). I've read tat true festae's were supposed to have a "Y" shape vertical bar but I was thinking that these guys might be too small (they're about 3 inches)
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Postby Chromedome52 » Fri Jan 27, 2012 3:20 am

The fact that they have vertical bars at 3 inches, along with the first two bars not being connected, makes them Mayans. A 3 inch festae would still have a row of squarish spots down the side. As for sex, I really can't tell from those photos.
Whenever something seems too good to be true I find it's best to shoot it, just in case. - Fiona Glenanne on Burn Notice
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Postby bernie comeau » Fri Jan 27, 2012 8:21 am

Yes, mayans.

Sometimes the 'y-bar' is a quick and easy way to tell the difference. Festae have a 'y-bar' that usually attaches to the adjacent bar around eye level. A mayan's 'y-bar' (if you even want to call it that) comes all the way down to the gill area and very seldom attaches to the adjacent bar.
As well, they can be differentiated by counting the number of bars. Not counting the tail spot nor bars directly above the eyes, mayans usually have 7 bars. Festae, counting bars in a similar manner, and counting their 'y-bar' as 2 bars, have 8 bars. Horizontal rows of large black spots on a cichlid are bars that are not being fully expressed , and should be recognized as such.

Often they can be distinguished by tail spot as well. mayans most often have a very large tail spot and festae a tail spot centered on the top half of the caudal peduncle. fairly reliable, though there are sometimes exceptions, so it should not be relied apon exclusively to differentiate.
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Postby Chromedome52 » Fri Jan 27, 2012 1:53 pm

Mayans never display square blotches from their bars. Juvenile festae do not express the solid bars that later develop from those square blotches, the blotch is always darker than the rest of the bar, which is only seen during stress. It is a major difference in juvenile pattern between these two species.

This is a 2.5" juvenile festae that belonged to a friend. The differences are clear and obvious. My own festae did not lose this pattern until they were about 4". (Then they all turned into females, ending my attempt to breed them!)

Image
Whenever something seems too good to be true I find it's best to shoot it, just in case. - Fiona Glenanne on Burn Notice
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Postby 24Tropheus » Sat Jan 28, 2012 6:58 pm

If they have that dark spot or stripe going into the dorsal they are generaly female these are also the smaller and more aggressive to other cichlids but because of the size difference the male becomes the dom one in a pair..
Female shown here http://www.google.co.uk/imgres?q=Cichla ... 9,r:2,s:10
But vent to be sure.
Agree they are uros though hybrids of the two do exist in the hobby..

They are quite hard to pair from adults. I would recommend the barrier method. For those.
A tank divider with a hole big enough for only the female to get through. Breed at 4" +.

Fin shape is a poor indicator of sex in these.

Saying that I am pretty sure you have at least one male (top one). Prob is I am not sure about the other.
I think it might be male too.
IME males get to about 12" in tanks females about 8" and they will breed in a 48"x15"x15" tank but will require something larger long term. Mine ended up in a 84"x24"x24".

At only 3" you are best with a bunch 6 or so and letting em choise there own mates as not all males or females will accept a forced partner.

Pair bond does not always last outside breeding so be sure to give the smaller female a refuge to hide from the male.

All the best James
Tanks 180, empty revamping 100,65,60g Tropheus/tang communities 75g revamping. 29gx3 shelly communities, 29g Trigs breeding. 20gx2 shelly tanks. BCA member 207. Try it you might like it.
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Postby musica123 » Sun Jan 29, 2012 8:00 am

Thanks for the replies guys (or gals)
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