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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

I've just purchased a 29 gallon for my office (30L x 12W x 18H), and I expect I'll be putting a pair of Bolivian Rams in it. (I'd really like to do German Rams, but I can't find any in any of my local LFS)

The species profile says: "Each fish should have at least a 10" square territory." Should I take this to mean 10" x 10" (which is actually 100" square) or is it really only 10" square? I'm thinking the former.

Regardless, I was thinking about a pair of Rams, 6 or so Rummynose Tetras and one or two Bristlesnose. I'm not interested in breeding.

I was going to paint the back of the tank really dark green or blue, and plant the heck out of that sucker.

Sound like a successful set up?

Thanks,

kevin
 

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Sounds fine to me! I'd start with 6 of the youngest rams you can find and put a lot of decor in the tank, then wait for a pair to form and remove the rest...after that you can redecorate the tank to look a little more sparse and show the rams off better.
 

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I have 3 rams in my 29 tall and I don't think it is enough room for them. I want to put them in a 55 but they seem to constantly offend each other. But that is just my two pennies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'd start with 6 of the youngest rams you can find and put a lot of decor in the tank, then wait for a pair to form and remove the rest...after that you can redecorate the tank to look a little more sparse and show the rams off better.
After spending the whole weekend trying to catch one of my Mbuna in my 38g I don't relish the idea of trying to catch 4 more fish down the road - please tell me Rams are slower!

Seriously though, I guess I could start with some decor that's easy to remove; clay pots, driftwood and fake plants, and then plant the tank once I have my pair. But my preference would be to plant heavily as I set the tank up for its cycle - meaning the non-bonded Rams will be **** to catch.

Is there a preferred order for introducing the fish? i.e. Pleco, Rams, Tetras, or does it not matter much?
 

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I meant a circle with a diameter of 10 inch or an aria of 10 by 10. So the footprint is on the edge but if you add lots of plants, driftwood and some flat pebbles or stones you can pull of with 2 pairs of Bolivians. They are defenately more interesting in a small group and les problems related to stressed females or hyper territorial males. Sooooo I recommend 4 adults of them. DBS made a very good suggestion to buy say 8 youngsters and wait until they pair up and select 1 or 2 couples.

Put in 3 Bolivians and you know for sure one is always chased by the other 2. So I would never suggest 1 male and 2 female for example. Bolivians quarrel a lot and thats just part of their social behaviour. In a normal situation they feed together and share territories and shelter when there is danger.

A tip on catching fish. Darken the tank for one or two hours. The fish will be in sleep mode. After you turn on the light they will be slower and just have to wake up. This makes it easier to catch them. :wink:

Ruurd
 

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No need for the clay pots for Bolivians, either. They don't care for caves. Driftwood, plants and a few strategically placed flat rocks are all they need!

Kim
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I'm planning on following the plan in this library article in setting up my aquarium:
http://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/s ... d_tank.php
Since this is my second tank I'm committed to taking things a lot slower than my first (Malawi Mbuna in a 38 gallon - let the fighting begin!). If starting with a large number of Rams to get a bonded pair is far and away the best way to go, that's what I'll do. But in your experience, is it possible to identify a pair at the LFS? If so, I'd much rather get my plants going, then let the Plecos get established, then add a pair of Rams, and lastly a school of Rummynose.

Tonight I'm going to paint the back of my tank.

Baby steps.
 

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ridley25

Most often LFS have young adult rams. I have in the past sat and watched a tank for quite some time and have ben able to pick out what appears to be a pair. Over time you'll become better at it, like most things.

Quite often these are two fish that hang out together, keeping to one area of the tank. Often this may be a piece of driftwood in the tank, or the filter intake.

They will chase off other fish that come to close to thier area. Sometimes they will be more coloured up compared to thier tankmates.

Some times you can recognise a pair straight away (easy when they are guarding eggs or fry, ed.), other times you have to sit in front of the tank for half an hour or more.

Of course this is the easy part. Being able to identify both fish out of 20 when the LFS attendant is try to catch them with a net in a small tank, and every fish is going helta skelta is the hard part. :p
 

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Just drain your tank down to about 20% of the water left and catch the fish - it makes life a lot easier when they don't have vertical space as well as horizontal on their side to avoid the net.

Netting skills develope in time - I find myself grabbing the net from guys at the LFS who work part time to catch my fish after watching them almost murder a few trying to squish them against a wall, hehe.

It's all in the technique :p
 

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DirtyBlackSocks said:
Netting skills develope in time - I find myself grabbing the net from guys at the LFS who work part time to catch my fish after watching them almost murder a few trying to squish them against a wall, hehe.

It's all in the technique :p
Oh so true. My regular LFS will let me catch out my own fish if they are busy. Otherwise I let them do it. They are pretty good, but they only have 3 employees. The owner, his wife and the ex-owner who the current owner bought it off.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for the advice.
I'll be spending lots of time at my LFS over the next few weeks getting substrate, plants, etc. So I'll buy a front row seat for the Ram tank and watch watch watch. My coworker and I are both stocking similar tanks at work, so we may have to arm wrestle for the best pair!
 

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ridley25 I'd suggest checking out more than one LFS. Also talk your mate into going with a trio of apistos.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I'd suggest checking out more than one LFS. Also talk your mate into going with a trio of apistos.
Good advice that will be followed. I've been looking for Bolivians, Blue Rams and Apistos in Southern Ontario, but so far I've only found Bolivians.
 

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But in your experience, is it possible to identify a pair at the LFS?
No I don't think it is possible. A new tank can mess up things and made the pair split. I have 7 Bolivians in one tank and 3 pairs formed. Some split up and they switched partners. This will most likely happen during spawning. If one of the parents turns out to be a bad parent the other goes on checking and seducing an other partner. You can pic out boy's and girls at the lfs.

Netting skills develope in time - I find myself grabbing the net from guys at the LFS who work part time to catch my fish after watching them almost murder a few trying to squish them against a wall, hehe.
Yeh I have seen this often and I also ended up with damaged fish. I take rather some time and net them easily without damaging the fish.

Be careful with buying Bolivians. A lot of bad qualety fish come from the SE Asian fish farms. Most of them aren't fertile any more due to chemicals. Best qualety come from local breeders or people in the hobby.
 

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Dutch dude.
have you seen this with Bolivian Rams?
I know it is common with Blue Rams and Discus. as they try to feed food laced with hormones to get the fish to color up sooner.

But have not experienced it with Bolivian Rams.
 

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Oooh they sure do! Once you raised a couple of fry you know how they develop. I seen cheap Bolivians in the lfs with all sort of deformities and showing orange bellies at the age of abouth 5 months. This isn't normal development! Unfortunately lots of bad qualety fish come from SE Asia and even shops begin to complain abouth bad qualety fish.

I takes a Bolivian abouth 1.5 to 2 years to become full adult. They can be sold at the age of 5 months but hardly show color. Grow them the natural way to a decent size and some moderate colors takes abouth 8 months. If the fish would cost $50 this would be interesting for fish farms,.....but they are cheap dwarfs. So they increase growth with hormones and treat the fish with meds to avoid illnesses. Normally parent raised fry will go trough a natural selection and only healthy and strong fish make it to become adults. In the fish farms all fish get raised and lots of deformed fish come on the market. Most seen are high bodied fish (just like the balloon rams witch is a deformity as well), bend spines, deformed face / mouth and deformed fins. Soooo,.....not all Bolivians are of poor qualety BUT,....keep your eyes open when you buy them. Best qualety are from people in the hobby and local breeders,...unless your from SE Asia :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Dutch Dude, would you be kind enough to post some pictures of some ideal Bolivians with their approximate ages noted?

I'm extremely new at this, so the more info I can gather, the better.
 

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Hahaha,...I would like to help you out on pics but it is indeed an awful lot of work,....and after a computer crash I lost quit some pics as well. But,.....there are a lot of pics at the BRC treat. Pics of fry and of young adults and also lots of info abouth grow rate and "normal" size at a certain age. I think you should be somewhere around page 30 or so and start at the date of January 2007. Sooo,...now you have something to do, hahaha! If you like the info I suggest to read the whole BRC treat. If you reed trough it you get ALL the info you need on the specie and came by a lot of pics of tank set ups and fish. It will take some time but if your realy are interested in the specie and want to know all the important ins and outs it is absolutely worth it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thanks for the page reference. That thread is so long I feel like I might get farther looking for Ram info in "War and Peace."
 
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