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Any experienced GBR keepers?

1036 Views 3 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  sir_keith
Got a long finned german blue ram on Monday. Put him in a tank with a relatively new filter although ammonia and nitrite were at 0 for 2 weeks prior, and nitrates above tap level. He was breathing qiite heavily in the shop, improved on day 2 at home. Tanks been running 6 weeks first as a quarantine for 16 ember tetras and 3 corys, then moved them to my display tank, and put 4 claro ancistrus in fhere. Upon adding the claros got a nitrite reading under 1 but not 0 for a few days but it disappeared without me doing anything. 2 weeks after that added the long finned GBR. Ammonia and nitrite stayed at 0, but after seeing day 2 massive improvements from his shop condition on day 5 he started panting with his gills going. I checked parameters again using a liquid test, all still zero.

Decided as he wasn't doing well, and I know GBR's can fade away quickly, that I would put him in a 30 litre tank on his own as the filter was much more established (running sinxe October). There were 6 cpd's and 3 threadfin rainbows in there, I moved them to the claro tank.

48 hours on he is doing better, coloured up beautifully, food begging etc so hopefully ok. But he is breathing quite fast. His gills aren't going, and he seems calm and interactive. He's very chilled out for a dwarf cichlid. Is breathing faster than other fish normal for a gbr or is it telling me the waters not soft enough?

He was in the shop for 3 weeks in GH 11 ph 7.5. My GH is 9, ph 7.6 in that tank. Next water change I am going to just use RO to bring it down further to a GH of 6. Ideally don't want to lower GH below 6 as KH will be 4, particularly in a small tank need to monitor KH closely.

I've not had rams before, have keyholes and apistogramma. So would welcome any input from experienced keepers as I know they are super sensitive.

He's beautiful so hope I can keep him healthy for a few years!


PS photo was in the shop


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It's difficult to tell from the pic you posted, but it appears to me that this fish is bloated. This is consistent with the heavy breathing that you noted in the shop (not a great idea to buy a fish in obvious distress), and also episodically at home. This is likely the result of chronic stress that the fish experienced before you acquired him. Your water parameters are fine, and it's a very good sign that this fish is eating. That said, I would treat this fish aggressively with Metronidazole and hope for the best. Good luck.
They fed him bloodworm 2-3 hours before I got him, he's got a good appetite so that's why he's bloated. The bloat was 100% gone the next day but he didn't travel the 2 hours 15 mins home particularly well stuffed full of bloodworm. I wouldn't feed a ram bloodworm but he'll get brineshrimp, daphnia etc here :)

I'm in the UK so not sure what med that is (will look it up), but he's had a mild anti bac and anti parasitic treatment, Waterlife Myxazin. It's kinda like API general cure. I see no reason currently to medicate him further, just going to do 1/3 water change twice a week while he's in quarantine as he's in a 30 litre tank (on his own). He'll be quarantined until 17/18 August when I'm picking up a female providing he's healthy.

It's very hard to get good rams here, most are seriously inbred from the czech republic and we never see long fins. So I got him as I knew another place was getting some from Singapore around now. So I know they will have separate gene pools. I am think they'll live on their own in a 60 litre long tank. If the females in the Singapore imports don't look good I will wait until my favourite shop get some wild blues, they get them 2-3 times a year from Central America.

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Absolutely, get the wild rams; they are the best. :thumb:
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