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Has anybody ever seen or even heard of a yellow P. saulosi male?

My dad has had a colony of P. saulosi for about 10 years now. They are in a 200 liter (about 55G) species tank. No other fish have been in the tank since he got the P. saulosi. The tank is ensely planted with Cryptocoryne. They breed regularly, and my dad leaves the fry in the tank, where some percentage of them can hide in the plants and grow up. His colony is steadily increasing in size, but so far it has never reached a level where he had to remove any.

The fish come from a very reputable breeder in Germany. MalTaVi, which happens to be close to where my dad lives. They also ship internationally all the way to Japan and China. Their fish are known to be top notch quality.

My dad's fish show good color and are happy and healthy. About four years ago I took this video:

My brother does the water changes, filter cleanings, and so on. My dad is 80, feeds the fish, and enjoys them.

In the weekend, my brother visited him from Switzerland, and he discovered what looks to be a yellow male. The fish shows the stripes, other dark markings, and general behavior of a male.

Possibly a mutation?

Greetings

Frank
 

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Hey Frank long time no see! Nice to hear your dad is still enjoying his fish and your brother doing the grunt work.

I've not kept this species for some odd reason but I'm wondering if it is a male trying to retain some yellow female color due to a dominant male or two already in the tank?
 

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Hi Dee, nice to hear from you! I have not seen the fish in person, but just judging from the photo, in the way he is displaying a jet black dorsal fin and is chasing that female around, he is not doing a good job at disguising himself! One could only tell by observing his behavior, but I would not be surprised if he was one of the two dominant males himself. It's a small tank, so there probably can't be more than two. At any rate, I have never heard about anything like it with P. saulosi.

It's a great mbuna species for small tanks. First of all they stay small and are not overly aggressive. Second have blue and yellow fish in one species, making a species tank is very attractive to look at. Sadly, since they are a late discovery, they didn't make it on the NZ White List, which makes them illegal here.
 

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At any rate it's a pretty fish. I have a 55g Saulosi tank. It has six colored up males with twelve females. One paler than the others. The distinction of the strips on that is amazing but it appears certainly a male poorly disguised.
 

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fmueller said:
That's a lot of colored up males for a tank that size!
It is and I'm keeping a close eye out. Have fry that I'm hoping to get more females and divide some
up into a 55 with some White Labs. Suspect I'll be farming out some males.
 

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You would have to observe the tank and determine that this male is not in transition from yellow to blue. There may have been a change in the pecking order, and this male may be making a move from submissive to the top.

Or maybe this male simply doesn't have very good genes at turning blue. In nature, such a male might not breed. In an aquarium, many generations removed from the wild, maybe the need to turn blue is no longer that necessary. Kenyi and Auratus are examples of Mbuna that tank raised males can have rather poor mature color.
 

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I believe I read somewhere that Konings and others who observed P. Saulosi in the Wild said that the blue coloration was a more rare occurrence there, perhaps due to a smaller population of dominant males and way more sub doms.

I kept a group and had males at several stages of the morph from yellow to blue.

My guess would be this is either a sub-dominant male with poor genetic disposition for the blue color, or a female trying to defend her brood. I've read that they can show defined barring and some black outline on the fins.

The crazy thing with this particular fish is that it has strong enough black outline and barring to indicate it is a dominant male, but no blue at all. I'd love to see more pictures or a video as follow-up.

It's a gorgeous fish!
 
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