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Acei spawn help

Mon Jul 15, 2019 9:42 am

I have a couple mbunas in my 55gallon that are holding. One is a hybrid that started holding on the 13th and the other is a yellowtail acei that started holding yesterday. I'm not sure which fish the hybrid spawned with, but the acei spawned with my other acei.

My issue is that the male acie keeps chasing the female around and I'm worried she'll get stressed and drop her eggs. This is her first batch. This is also the first time I'm trying to save potential fry.

I was wondering if I should separate the acei female to a different tank. I've got a few options.

* 29 gallon for both or one of the holding cichlids. Move both today and let them egg tumble in peace. I thought about dividing the 29 gallon or possibly turning it into a giant breeder box where I fit a divider over the bottom. But then I remembered cichlids sometimes drop eggs and pick them back up. This tank is currently inhabited by a few guppies and kuhli loaches which can be moved.

* 10 gallon, but move towards 3 week mark, then move adult back to main tank after she spits fry. This would also give time for the tank to cycle with a sponge filter. I'd also add a seeded hob.

*55 gallon Leave both in there but divide half foot section of the tank. Fry might go through to the side with the big fish and get eaten.

*55 gallon again. Do nothing and let nature take its course.

I'm leaning more towards one of the 29 gallon options. I don't need to move the hybrid, but I thought there would be less stress if both were together. Any thoughts?

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Re: Acei spawn help

Mon Jul 15, 2019 2:48 pm

I would put the female acei in the 29G and let her spit there. This is assuming you watched the entire spawn which can take more than a day.

I would let the hybrid spit in the tank. Or if you want to keep the hybrid fry in a separate tank for their lifetimes, then start with the 10G and eventually give them their own 55G.

Re: Acei spawn help

Mon Jul 15, 2019 3:43 pm

I didn't watch the entire spawn. Just some of the chasing and circling/courting. She's holding and the male still chases her.

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Re: Acei spawn help

Mon Jul 15, 2019 5:31 pm

DJRansome wrote:This is assuming you watched the entire spawn which can take more than a day.

You must be referring to, or including pre-spawning/courting behavior :-?
The actual spawning act of a mouthbrooder takes less then 1/2 an hour, tops. Usually no more then 5-10 minutes. Seen it hundreds of times. Even mozambiques with much larger broods then mbuna, did the act in a matter of minutes. I've seen demasoni on two ocasions breed with 2 males. On the wall of the left side of the tank, then with a male on the right wall of the tank, then back again with the male on the left wall of the tank. Even with 2 males and coming back to breed with the 1st male a second time, the entire spawning act couldn't have taken more then 5 minutes!
Substrate spawners can take a little longer, but then some of the bigger cichlids can lay over 1000 eggs. Most are done in well under an hour. 2-3 hours at the most for very large batches of eggs.
Now with mouthbrooders, I agree you can't always be certain on which male(s) fertilized the eggs unless you actually witness the act (see the eggs coming out of the female, the male positioning by the female's mouth to fertilize and then the female picking the eggs up).

Re: Acei spawn help

Mon Jul 15, 2019 5:56 pm

That was my point. I have also seen the spawn start and stop due to interruptions by other fish.

Re: Acei spawn help

Mon Jul 15, 2019 7:36 pm

Lol then it's a very educated guess that both the acei paired up because they were both displaying courting behavior and have been hanging around each other the most.
The male still chases her and does the weird flaring thing, but she's not interested anymore so she swims away and he chases her all over the tank.

I just got done with work, so I'm going to set up a tank for the guppies so I can put her in the 29 gallon.

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