Lake Tanganyika Species • Shellie missing, should I start looking?

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Shellie missing, should I start looking?

Postby Dandy Don » Mon Apr 20, 2020 7:43 pm

In February, I started a species-only 20 gallon Lamprologus' similis tank. Six fish, varying in size between 1/2 inch and 3/4 inch.
I watch them every day and really enjoy their behavior. They are now about one inch in size. I have 10 shells for them. They have been thriving.
Six days ago, I saw one of the bigger ones forcing another one into a shell. The "victim" was dark striped and panting.
Since then, I've only seen five fish. Tonight, I took the shell out that the "victim" was forced into six days ago, and it smelled fine. Then I emptied the shell.
I looks like breeding behavior. In fact, it looks like they are trying to bury some of the shells. But I would think they are too young to breed.
I'm tempted to empty out every shell to find the six fish, but I don't know if I should just keep waiting. Six days seems like a long time to stay in the shell when they are too young to breed.
Any suggestions?
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Re: Shellie missing, should I start looking?

Postby Deeda » Mon Apr 20, 2020 7:48 pm

I would just keep waiting, it's possible the 'missing' fish comes out after lights out.

Any other decor besides the shells? Maybe hiding behind the heater? Stuck in a filter? Small gap it could have gotten out of the tank?
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Re: Shellie missing, should I start looking?

Postby Dandy Don » Mon Apr 20, 2020 8:00 pm

There is a filter, half of a clay pot, a flat rock and a heater. I looked under the clay pot, the rock and no sign of it behind the filter or heater.
Does it sound like breeding behavior to you? BTW, I'd say they are all a little more than an inch.
There is a small gap in the back of the hood. But I've never seen them go to even mid water. They spend all of their time within a couple inches of the substrate.
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Re: Shellie missing, should I start looking?

Postby Fogelhund » Wed Apr 22, 2020 10:01 am

Dandy Don wrote:There is a filter, half of a clay pot, a flat rock and a heater. I looked under the clay pot, the rock and no sign of it behind the filter or heater.
Does it sound like breeding behavior to you? BTW, I'd say they are all a little more than an inch.
There is a small gap in the back of the hood. But I've never seen them go to even mid water. They spend all of their time within a couple inches of the substrate.


Yes, it sounds like breeding behaviour to me. They don't get very big, and if the females are an inch, they are big enough.
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