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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK dwarfpike I don't there are enough of us who like and keep Laetacara species to officially title this thread as a Club. :D

:roll:

I keep both Laetacara curviceps & Laetacara dorisgera. Two pairs of curviceps in my 150 gallon community tank, and a single pair of dorsigera in a 35 gallon Tall tank.

Here are some photos of my Laetacara dorsigera pair. The photos were taken shortly after a water change today. I bought them as wild caught less than two months ago, and they were sub-adults. They spawned for the first time last week, and managed to raise the fry to 3 day old before they ate them. :-? They are usually shy and stick to the planted areas of the tank, except at feeding time. They are still learning to accept NLS pellets, and that they have to be fast to compete with the rummynose tetras.

Male L. dorsigera.


The male is the higher of the two fish.


Thier base colouring is yellow, unfortunately the photos don't quite do them justice. Niether do the photos show the red in thier finage.


Female leading the male.


Breeding colours. My batteries died while taking photos of the pair guarding thier fry over the weekend, and this was the only photo that appears to have survived.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I don't have many photos of my L. curviceps. Basically both pairs keep to the Thin Val forest along the rear of the tank. Even more so now than before, since I moved each pairs spawning rocks into the Thin Val.

Female guarding eggs.


Male taking his turn.


Please excuse the blue rocks. :roll: I had treated the tank for white spot a couple of weeks before the photos were taken, and the dye leached into the rocks. It's slowly fading.
 

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Well there would be enough peeps for a club if they (the fish) were around more!!! I know they don't show well in pet stores, but curviceps are so "common" I've yet to see any!!!

I have kept Laetacara dorsigera several times (each time sold as curviceps) and Laetacara thayeri once (which I rarely speak about due to a rouge male dusting off the female, 4 wild dwarf noto pikes and 10 true zebra plecos while I was at work :( ).

If we could get some pics of 'bucklekoff' or 'orangeflossen' though, that would really change peoples mind and we could start the club up!!! :idea: Of course I'll need to join the 21st century and get a ditial camera I suppose.

LFS does have some 'curviceps' in ... so will probably give it another shot and cross my fingers that it's not dorsigera again ... though if it is I'll have a good excuse to join the bolivan ram club!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I have kept Laetacara dorsigera several times (each time sold as curviceps) and Laetacara thayeri once (which I rarely speak about due to a rouge male dusting off the female, 4 wild dwarf noto pikes and 10 true zebra plecos while I was at work :( ).
OMG that is disturbing and sad. 10 juvenile zebra plecos would cost the best part of AUS$6000 easy.

Most curviceps I see in the LFS are very washed out and I wouldn't touch them. The ones I did buy, I found in the LFS owned by the president of our cities cichlid club, which is on the other side of town. I bought all five they had, 3 males and 2 females. There was such a marked difference in quality.

One easy way to tell the difference between the two species, is the colouration along the edge
of the dorsal fin. On the curviceps, the trim along the first half of the dorsal fin is orange, wich blends into a blue trim along the second half of the dorsal fin. Whereas on the dorsigera, the trim starts as orange and darkens to red to further along the dorsal fin.

That each species has a different base colouration to them. Blue for the curviceps and yellow to for the dorsigera. When spawning, the curviceps' blue really pops through the black base colour, while the dorsigera has a muted purple red throat.
 

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Well luckily on the cost part, these were locally bred and were half off when I bought them during a LFS anniversary sale, so were only $25 a piece. Am still sore about it several years later though, especially with the new brazilian exporting restrictions and the price of zebras now a days. I know thayeri are not really dwarves, but I've never heard of one pretending to be a true green terror before ... just goes to show even normally peaceful fish can snap ... like someone's checkerboard male I read about. :wink:

And yes, the washed out is a problem as the base color is usually gone as well, leaving an off white fish with a dark lateral line. I've read dorsgera's line stops midway, curviceps continues on through the tail. But at the LFS, they are usually stressed in addition to washed out which means the bar would be present on both. Will check the dorsal fins coloring though, the edging should be there, thanks for the tip. :thumb:

Breeding colors are easy, that's how I knew I had dorsigera each time, they turned that purpleish red color on their throats.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I've read dorsgera's (horizontal - ed. :D ) line stops midway, curviceps continues on through the tail.
Well I think you can see the diferentiation pretty clearly in my photos. The dorsigera's horizontal line stops at the at the lateral spot, then a series of vertical bars start at the lateral spot and continue to the base of the caudal fin.

Even though the male curviceps is in breeding dress, you can still see the horizontal bar running right down to the caudal fin.
 

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I have only seen curviceps once around here, and yet dr. Paul Loiselle, told me that they are bred by the thousands in the Far East. I guess it depends where you live as to whether they are readily available.
 

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I got my first Laetacaras about six months ago. They have behaved well but they are also smallest fish in my tank atm. No breeding behaviour yet and size is around 7-8cm. If Im right they should get up to 14cm?



Other one here.
 

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I have two groups of Laetacara from Jeff Rapps -- six L. curviceps "red shoulder" and five L. dorsigera wild-caught. I had six of the latter but lost one in an unfortunate siphoning accident last week :(

I don't have any pictures yet but all of the fish are 1 - 1.5". They're currently in quarantine. They are cute little guys who got over their shyness pretty quickly. They come to the top of the tank with tails wagging now, hoping for some bloodworms.

As they get larger and I move them out of quarantine I will try to get pictures. As tiny as they are and as fast as they move, trying to photograph them now would probably prove useless.
 

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BillD - This is true, they are breed like rabbits over there ... which is why they are seen in Oz more so than here. In florida dorsigera are breed instead becuase of the harder water, which is why we see them more frequently than curviceps in the states and canada.

Tommi - Looks like Laetacara thayeri to me, which is the largest of the genus said to get 15cm SL ... my male was at least 12cm before I traded him back to the lfs.

ryansmith - Ooooh deffinately get some pics of the red shoulder curviceps!!!

DFF - Heh, all the Laetacara fans are coming out of the closest ... we might be able to start that club yet!
 
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