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I have read from a variety of sources that auratus can change gender if they are in an exclusively female tank. the dominant female changes from being gold with black stripes and picks up the dark blackish/brownish/blue coloring of the male auratus. however, i am not clear if this is an actual sex change or just a change in coloration to show dominance in the absence of a male. in other words, can an auratus female that "becomes male" fertilize eggs? i looked at the species article on this site and it does not mention anything about a gender or sex change.
 

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The alpha female does not change gender, she just can take on male coloration. I've even heard of a dominant female attempting to mate with a sub-dominant female. I've never heard of fertile eggs being the result, however.
 

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A color change and then females holding is not enough to prove that a female auratus actually turned into a male. It could have been a subdom male that finally felt comfortable enough to color up. It could have been a dominant female simply taking on male coloration (but remaining female). Also, is has been said that 2 females will attempt to spawn together with the result of one or both fish holding eggs afterwards, but the eggs are obviously not fertile.

To believe that a female auratus can actually change gender, I would have to see evidence that:

1) the female first has held fertile eggs at some point (produced fry),
2) changed color to mate and fertilize eggs with another female, and
3) those eggs hatched into fry.
 

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The tank was full of females who had all produced fry before with various males. After selling the males 2 ' changed' then fertilized eggs with the other females which hatched.
This is a good debate however and I appreciate your doubts as I found it odd too. I believe there has been studies on various cichlids that report this phenomenon.
:thumb:
 

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yeah, when I googled for any evidence to support your claim (to see if I was wrong), that abstract was the only thing I found too... Do you have the whole article by chance? I couldn't find it, but I would like to read it.
 

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Rhinox, if you don't want to believe it then don't, that's up to you. All I can say is I have seen it occur in a stable environment. No, I didn't film it and I can't prove it to you, unless you pay for a flight to Spain and stay here a month or 2 to witness it.

I also have clients who have witnessed the same phenomenon, clients who, like me have over 30 years experience with Malawi's.

I am wondering what qualifies you to discount my claim?
 

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LOL, Jersey, this isn't heated, believe me, it can get a lot worse!! I fully understand the scepticism as it's not as regular occurrence with freshwater as it is with my marines, but IMHO it does occur! I have no problem with Rhinox questions, just that I don't feel I need to prove anything to justify ' my' claim. If you google it many sites make the same claim. :thumb:
 

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TheFishFactory said:
By the way , why would a ' sub dominant male' not show his male colouration if there were no other males in the tank?
I've seen this happen - it occurred when I added a young male to an established group of larger females.
 

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Wow, thats interesting.... *** heard it done with lizards.... cool to see cichlids can do it too......
 

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master chi said:
yeah my auratus changed color around 3 inches I ended up taking HIM!!! back to the lfs that I bought HER!!!javascript:emoticon(':zz:')
I don't think it changed sex I think it's color change just slow around my other fish.
 
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