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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been in the hobby for a while and have had to run the gauntlet (so to speak) of learning on my own and dealing with issues/trying to prevent issues with the tank.

Recently, I've noticed that one of my Yellow Labs has become quite aggressive. I had always thought it was a male just based on size and things of the like. It has chased another lad and nipped at the fins enough to cause serious injuries that turned out to be fatal. I bit the bullet on that one and have tried to pay closer attention to what is going on and as time has gone on, it has started chasing my other Lab... again to the point of injury. I've separated the aggressor and placed it in in another tank and upon looking at it, there are eggs in the bottom of the tank now.... I can only now assume that my male lab is in fact a female and that the aggression comes from a need to breed? Is this at all correct?

If it makes a difference, I've never been able to tell if the other Labs are male or female..

Thanks for looking. Any input is greatly appreciated.
 

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My dominant male has ejected a few males from my group. He removed the tailfin on one fish in an hours time while I was at the store. I can't answer your question about the female being aggressive from a need to breed. I would try to vent the fish or maybe take it to a lfs that can vent to find out exactly what it is. If it is a female and she laid eggs you should be able to notice the egg tube protruding a bit.

Wish I had a better answer for you. Good luck getting it sorted.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you, Kerricko. I have noticed the protruding tube but never really paid it much attention. I've already noticed a difference in the Labs attitude and will probably move it back to the main tank in a few hours.
 

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Female or not, it is the dominant fish and it obviously does not like the competition around... What size is your tank, and what else is in there?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I've got a 56 gal cube (basically a cube) with one other Yellow Lab, 2 Red Jewels, 1 Demasoni, and a Metriaclima Greshakei
 

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Sounds understocked, even for a cube. Adding more fish would likely curb the aggression a bit. I would add another 5 labs as a start.
 

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Yes I am surprised it's been working this long with full-sized mbuna in a 24" tank.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The tank dimensions are 36" long, 18" deep, and 24" tall. If you'd like to see the tank, please check out the pictures posted in my profile.

I'm not looking to add more fish (although I understand that that may be the best possible solution).. None of the fish are full sized and the other fish I've had that had grown to a full size, I've re-homed. Simply put, what are the best possible reasons for the aggression and what can be done to return the tank to the very peaceful state that it is normally in?

Again, thank you for looking and any input is appreciated.
 

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The usual reasons for aggression are:
--too small tank
--incompatible tank mates
--wrong gender ratio

When I say full-sized mbuna, I mean a fish like greshakei. It matures at 6" and it is aggressive. More ideal to keep them in a 55G or larger.

If you have an unusual mix in a tank that is not supposed to be big enough but it's working, and then for some reason the dynamic changes, I would say very likely you will not be able to restore the former balance.

For a 36" tank I like dwarf mbuna, and usually a single species but sometimes the additional of a trio of labs will work.

For this tank I would remove the greshakei and jewels. And I would do 12 demasoni and 3 labs.

That will give your aggressive lab something to think about. If he still causes problems I'd bring him to the LFS for store credit.
 
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