General African Cichlid Discussion • missing fry

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missing fry

Postby mattleec » Thu Aug 09, 2018 5:13 pm

I have a 5 gallon fry tank letting some grow out enough to start selling them that I had about 30 bumblebee, 40 electric blue fryeri and 16 demasoni from 3 of my females that had some at around the same time. I also have 2 snails, 1 Chinese algae eater, 1 red tail sand loach and 2 angelfish about 2 inches size. other than the demasoni fighting each other and the bumblebees fighting over territory a bit at first it has been peaceful. however all the demasoni went missing over a few days then all the electric blue fryeri went missing over another few days leaving only the bumblebee fry. any clue's what is going on? I am not seeing any dead fish in the tank other than a few on the 1st couple of days as there was a few injured fry that I had expected not to make it anyway.
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Re: missing fry

Postby mattleec » Thu Aug 09, 2018 5:25 pm

also if anyone has a link or info on how the mother fish hold the egg/fry like a diagram or something showing it I would appreciate it. have been searching the internet and haven't found what im looking for. I had read that that demasoni have 10-12 fry at most when full size but my little 1.5 inch female, the smaller of the 2 females I have had 19 fry. she spit 3 in the tank that I just happened to be watching that area when she did it then I caught and stripped her and got another 16 fry. I understand how the bumblebee and electric blue could hold so many as they are full size so they are a lot bigger than the demasoni but im curious as to how so small a fish could have 19 fry almost the same size as the other kinds.
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Re: missing fry

Postby DJRansome » Thu Aug 09, 2018 6:28 pm

They are eating each other.
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Re: missing fry

Postby mattleec » Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:09 pm

the bumblebee fry are eating the other types?
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Re: missing fry

Postby DJRansome » Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:21 am

If the fry are at all different ages, they will try to eat each other and may succeed. All species but it makes sense that the most aggressive are the last standing. Are the bumblebee fry the largest/oldest?
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Re: missing fry

Postby mattleec » Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:01 pm

bumblebee are about a week older and only slightly larger/barely noticeable. seems hard to imagine something that small preying on demasoni though. demasoni like to pick on much larger fish.
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Re: missing fry

Postby SYcichlid » Fri Aug 10, 2018 3:25 pm

mattleec wrote:I have a 5 gallon fry tank letting some grow out enough to start selling them that I had about 30 bumblebee, 40 electric blue fryeri and 16 demasoni from 3 of my females that had some at around the same time. I also have 2 snails, 1 Chinese algae eater, 1 red tail sand loach and 2 angelfish about 2 inches size. other than the demasoni fighting each other and the bumblebees fighting over territory a bit at first it has been peaceful. however all the demasoni went missing over a few days then all the electric blue fryeri went missing over another few days leaving only the bumblebee fry. any clue's what is going on? I am not seeing any dead fish in the tank other than a few on the 1st couple of days as there was a few injured fry that I had expected not to make it anyway.




If I am reading your post right you have 86 fry, 2 snails, 1 algae eater, 1 sand loach, and 2 angels all in a 5 Gallon tank? You might want to get a little bit larger tank to keep them in or move each group to a separate tank. That's a ton of fish in a 5 gallon tank. No wonder you have fish eating each other.
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Re: missing fry

Postby mattleec » Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:22 pm

3 fish had babies within a week. timing could have been better. I talked to a local fish store today and she said its likely the bumblebee's eating the other ones due to one whole type being wiped out at a time. however as of just now I counted them and im down to 7 bumblebee's in the tank from about 30. could the angels be eating them when im not looking? I haven't seen them show any interest but now that the bumblebee's are disappearing too I wonder.
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Re: missing fry

Postby DJRansome » Fri Aug 10, 2018 9:08 pm

Every fish can eat every other fish. They don't have to swallow them whole, just take a bite so the fish dies then nibble the body away.

Mix fry that are stripped on the same day and of similar species. Crabro are aggressive.
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Re: missing fry

Postby noki » Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:01 am

Yes, all of the larger fish can and will eat the fry, even the algae eater and red tail sand loach. The "scavengers" might just eat the fry at night as the fry will not be moving much at all in the dark. Cichlids are easy prey at night for nocturnal species. Angels can eat small fry depending on how large they are, even thou they are not much of a predator. If fish can easily eat small organisms, they generally do eat them. Most fish are opportunistic.
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Re: missing fry

Postby BC in SK » Sun Aug 12, 2018 1:26 pm

IME, older, larger fry prey upon younger, smaller fry. I've experienced it over and over, time and time again. When you mix fry of different stages it is always to the detriment of the younger batches.
Mbuna no different then most cichlids, though IME, salvini stands out as the most "killer" of any fry that I have ever kept. Even in the same batch, my numbers always dwindle down, and those that are already larger at a young stage are those that I always end up with.
As far as something like a CAE eating sleeping fry, while I suppose it may be possible, I really don't buy it. I often have fry tanks with young CAE and/or pleco. Have had fry tanks with out them as well and certainly haven't noticed that they affect fry numbers at all. Their usefulness is eating uneaten food (as well as algae) so conceivably might(?) have some benefit in terms of water quality and growth rate, though that is more of a belief as I have no side to side comparison that would show this to be true or not.
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Re: missing fry

Postby noki » Sun Aug 12, 2018 1:49 pm

It could also be just as simple as you have too many fish in that tiny 5 gallon so the weakest die and get eaten, or are easy prey. Fry will suffer in poor water quality, while those bigger fish will be hardier. You need to pick the best quality or the easiest to sell and cater the tank for them.

You can't save all of the babies, try for quality not quantity. Have good water quality with very frequent water changes, cater the tank for the fry not a grab bag of fish. If you don't have room, you shouldn't try to save them all.
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Re: missing fry

Postby Old Newbie » Tue Aug 14, 2018 7:21 am

My money is on the algae eater eating everything in sight; those things only eat algae if there is nothing else available. Once I had a 55 gallon tank full of guppies and patties with a dozen corydora catfish and two algae eaters. The corys started disappearing one at time; I could not figure it out until one night I turned the light on and caught one of the algae eaters in the act of devouring one of my croys. Also, get a bigger grow out tank.
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Re: missing fry

Postby BC in SK » Sat Aug 18, 2018 10:42 am

Old Newbie wrote: I could not figure it out until one night I turned the light on and caught one of the algae eaters in the act of devouring one of my croys.

You actually witnessed it attacking and killing a healthy live fish? ......Or sucking on a dead or dying fish? I've had CAE's all together for well over 20 years or more, and have never seen the former, but have definitely seen the latter many times (sucking on dead fish). Currently have them in 4 of 6 tanks.
I agree that 5 gal. is too small for what the OP is stocking in the tank. It's suitable for the early stages of one batch of fry but will still need something larger to grow them out.
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