General Aquaria Discussion • I think my fish is Holding. I need help.

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I think my fish is Holding. I need help.

Postby heyimhere123 » Sat Jan 02, 2016 11:54 am

Hello cichlid lovers!
My name is Stephanie and I need some advice!! I am fairly new to the cichlid family and I am learning as I go apparently. I did not know there was so much to learn about these fish, but I am loving it.
I have this one fish she is a pretty good size and I know that she is holding. At first I thought that she was sick because she was not eating much. I put her in a smaller holding tank and realized that she is holding. According to the research that I have done this fish is a Red Zebra, I will attach a picture of her. But please correct me on the species if I am wrong. Yesterday i second guessed myself and did not think that she was holding anymore because when I was looking at her I could see through her scales under her mouth and I could see the color Blue. She is not blue and that is not normal so I thought that she had one of the blue pebbles that are in the tank stuck in her mouth. So I read online that you could lightly massage it out of her mouth. So I caught her in a net and that is what I WAS going to do... then all of a sudden a baby fish comes out of her mouth. So I just put her back in the tank. Now I have a baby fish in a small container attached to the tank. I am not sure if that is a good thing... I don't know what a fish that small would eat.... I don't know if I should put the holding fish back in my 55gallon tank with the other fish and the mating fish (mind you I do have one or two aggressive fish that would probably make her nervous). I don't know if I should release the small fish back with the holding fish. My smaller tank does not have as many hiding spots as my 55gallon tank but there are a few.
I am not sure how long she has been holding. I am really in love with these fish and I just want them to be okay. Advice anyone? I can always give more info If needed.
This is a link to what my fish looks like. http://s1190.photobucket.com/user/heyim ... g.html?o=0
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Re: I think my fish is Holding. I need help.

Postby DJRansome » Sat Jan 02, 2016 12:17 pm

Could be a red zebra and does appear to be holding. You will need a 10G or 20G tank just for the babies if you want to raise the fry...the baby will not do well in a container without heat or filtration.

Can the baby swim? If so all the babies are ready to come out of the mothers mouth...you could strip her into the grow-out tank. Or you could put her in the grow out tank until she spits the rest naturally.

You would not want any other fish in the baby tank as they will be eaten.
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Re: I think my fish is Holding. I need help.

Postby heyimhere123 » Sat Jan 02, 2016 12:27 pm

The baby is in a container inside the tank with the holding fish which has a heater and filter. The baby can swim but does not swim a lot. How exactly do you strip a fish?
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Re: I think my fish is Holding. I need help.

Postby DJRansome » Sat Jan 02, 2016 2:18 pm

See the Cichlid-forum Library in the Breeding section for how to strip. I prefer to let them spit naturally, but basically you hold the fish in your hand (make sure to wet your hand) and pry open her mouth with something, maybe a blunt toothpick. Repeated swishing in a bowl of tank water will flush out the babies.
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Re: I think my fish is Holding. I need help.

Postby wortel87 » Mon Jan 04, 2016 6:16 am

No stripping!
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Re: I think my fish is Holding. I need help.

Postby heyimhere123 » Thu Jan 07, 2016 5:42 pm

I did not strip her but she had them today and there is roughly around 50 babies!! I am so excited.
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Re: I think my fish is Holding. I need help.

Postby DJRansome » Thu Jan 07, 2016 7:36 pm

That is a big clutch!
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Re: I think my fish is Holding. I need help.

Postby heyimhere123 » Thu Jan 07, 2016 8:07 pm

I know it is. I am not sure what to do with them all now. Ha. Ideas?
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Re: I think my fish is Holding. I need help.

Postby DJRansome » Thu Jan 07, 2016 8:38 pm

Well that is always the problem, usually it's ideal to decide BEFORE saving the fry options are acceptable to you.

Ideally (since it seems you are not sure what species they are) you would get a couple of additional 55G tanks and keep them all for the next 8+ years.

Since many of us want to keep other fish and not be limited to 3 tanks full of hybrids, we let the mom spit in the tank and don't save the fry.

If you want the option of selling or even giving fish away, it helps the hobby to start with pure fish and let them spawn in a tank that is very unlikely to result in hybrids. For example, 1m:4f of the Metriaclima estherae (red zebras) and no yellow labs or other Metriaclima in the tank to avoid crossbreeding.
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Re: I think my fish is Holding. I need help.

Postby katherine7 » Wed Jan 27, 2016 3:40 pm

heyimhere123 wrote:Hello cichlid lovers!
My name is Stephanie and I need some advice!! I am fairly new to the cichlid family and I am learning as I go apparently. I did not know there was so much to learn about these fish, but I am loving it.
I have this one fish she is a pretty good size and I know that she is holding. At first I thought that she was sick because she was not eating much. I put her in a smaller holding tank and realized that she is holding. According to the research that I have done this fish is a Red Zebra, I will attach a picture of her. But please correct me on the species if I am wrong. Yesterday i second guessed myself and did not think that she was holding anymore because when I was looking at her I could see through her scales under her mouth and I could see the color Blue. She is not blue and that is not normal so I thought that she had one of the blue pebbles that are in the tank stuck in her mouth. So I read online that you could lightly massage it out of her mouth. So I caught her in a net and that is what I WAS going to do... then all of a sudden a baby fish comes out of her mouth. So I just put her back in the tank. Now I have a baby fish in a small container attached to the tank. I am not sure if that is a good thing... I don't know what a fish that small would eat.... I don't know if I should put the holding fish back in my 55gallon tank with the other fish and the mating fish (mind you I do have one or two aggressive fish that would probably make her nervous). I don't know if I should release the small fish back with the holding fish. My smaller tank does not have as many hiding spots as my 55gallon tank but there are a few.
I am not sure how long she has been holding. I am really in love with these fish and I just want them to be okay. Advice anyone? I can always give more info If needed.
This is a link to what my fish looks like. http://s1190.photobucket.com/user/heyim ... g.html?o=0


It was good to separate the female .There is no reason to strip her. She will do just fine by herself. It will takes 4-5 weeks and after that she will spitting them out. She will then let them come in and out of her mouth for about another week and then they will be do it themselves. During this period, she is holding, she will not eat. Near the end of the holding period, she may sneak some bites of flakes. During the 4-5 weeks you can add a couple of flakes and see if she will eat it, If not then remove the flakes. :fish:
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