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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, do any of you have any links, photos, or helpful info on venting adult comps? I am anxious for my two Muzi gold head comps to start breeding. I assumed them to be 1m & 1f. They are like best buds always following each other around the tank but no hints at spawning. I'd like to vent them myself.

Of course, a few pics of each....

The assumed female (3.5")




Assumed male (3.5 to 4")






Thanks,
Russ
 

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Take out a confirmed breeding pair for comparison when you vent. It should be pretty easy to tell when you have some examples on hand.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Darkside said:
Take out a confirmed breeding pair for comparison when you vent. It should be pretty easy to tell when you have some examples on hand.
I suppose my breeding calvus would do?
 

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Razzo said:
Darkside said:
Take out a confirmed breeding pair for comparison when you vent. It should be pretty easy to tell when you have some examples on hand.
I suppose my breeding calvus would do?
Those will do nicely. Comps aren't that hard to vent, especially from the profile view.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I vented my breeding calvus: male and female and they matched the profile picture in that link. So, with some confidence, I vented the two Muzi gold heads and I would have to say, based on the profile, they are both males. That would explain the lack of breeding :lol:

Thanks for all your help,
Russ
 

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Razzo said:
I vented my breeding calvus: male and female and they matched the profile picture in that link. So, with some confidence, I vented the two Muzi gold heads and I would have to say, based on the profile, they are both males. That would explain the lack of breeding :lol:

Thanks for all your help,
Russ
Lame......but I believe in a old thread you started I said I think they are both males :thumb:
 

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I lied I thought they were both female in that thread, well I thought they both looked really similar.

You still have hope though as those pictures of the altos vent are from altos that have spawned before. There is a chance your have never spawned yet, not not just for you. Vents show up, or at least protrude more after they have spawned at least once.

Need Your Advice THREAD
 

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When sexing newly mature sub adults I'll feed them as much krill as they can handle (stomach wise) and then, because they're bursting at the seems, you will, generally, see that the male's tubes are pointing straight down from the belly of the fish, and the females protrude diagonally toward the caudal fin slightly. I'd say this method, if you trust your eyes, has been about 75-80% accurate for me and the best part is that you don't have to catch and hold them out of the water etc.

But If you have to know beyond a doubt there's these from the article and althoughI wouldn't use Calvus as a guide to venting all cichlids as elongated body shape creates a number of vent variables which result in less evident vents in most other species, his pics have served me over the last few years as I vented guaranteed pairs:


 

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Don't be too sure Razzo, Just a couple of months ago I gave a friend what I thought for years was a spare male. As I was chasing him with the net he swam into a shell so I just bagged the shell and handed him to my friend to take since the last thing I need is more males.

I do however covet having extra females because I like having a busy Calvus setup whenever possible. To my surprise I did my buddy a bigger favor than I'd intended when I saw all the fry spilling out of the shell in the bag! The only other female in the tank also had fry in her shell at the time and was, of course guarding that shell. This "he" had never paired with any male that I tried "him" on and never shelled up and guarded eggs/fry. As a matter of fact for like 5 years all this, 2.5-3" "male" did was get beat on by the other female of about the same size and was repeatedly and aggressively driven into the corner by all 3 males I tried him/her with. But Lo and behold there wer alto fry in that fricken shell!

In retro I"m glad he got her, it's never a pretty setup when the outcast fish are cornered in unnatural looking positions in the setup. Hopefully he'll get her paired up. :)
 

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BioG said:
When sexing newly mature sub adults I'll feed them as much krill as they can handle (stomach wise) and then, because they're bursting at the seems, you will, generally, see that the male's tubes are pointing straight down from the belly of the fish, and the females protrude diagonally toward the caudal fin slightly. I'd say this method, if you trust your eyes, has been about 75-80% accurate for me and the best part is that you don't have to catch and hold them out of the water etc.
That article was posting at the beginning of this thread. :thumb:

Also I find the method of POWER FEEDING your africans to make the vents "pop" out is a HORRIBLE IDEA!!!!!!

It's just not worth accidentally killing your fish by overfeeding. This method works well in lots of SA/CA cichlids but there intestines can handle the extreme amount of food.

I highly erg no one to try this with africans.
 

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Darkside said:
You can do this sort of thing with Altos, but I wouldn't risk it with bloat prone fish.
But there are not to many people that I know of who keep alto only tanks, you might kill tank mates.

It just seems to risky for me.

I like keeping my fish alive and healthy :D
 

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Also all fish are bloat prone. Some just are more sensitive than others, so even with SA/CA cichlids there is still a chance that you could cause it. We can't see it happening in side the fish, its just a bad practice in my opinion.
 

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All fish may be susceptible to bloat, but only some species are prone to getting it. That being said I've let my lamps absolutely gorge themselves on black worms (because they don't keep forever) and they have never developed any problems. Its actually a natural phenomenon for the fish of lake Tanganyika and it occurs whenever there's a mass emergence event, be it insects or fish fry. :thumb:
 

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Darkside said:
All fish may be susceptible to bloat, but only some species are prone to getting it. That being said I've let my lamps absolutely gorge themselves on black worms (because they don't keep forever) and they have never developed any problems. Its actually a natural phenomenon for the fish of lake Tanganyika and it occurs whenever there's a mass emergence event, be it insects or fish fry. :thumb:
There is a difference between high protein fish food and natural prey in the wild. It "may" happen and the fish "may" eat until they look like balloons, all I am saying is that I would rather not risk it if I did not have too.

I'll just stick to a magnifying glass and a digital camera with a nice zoom to vent :wink:
 

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I'm not recommending the procedure to anyone, but I don't really see anything wrong with it in this circumstance, it may even be a good way to help separate fry for sale. I should point out that krill isn't a high protein food and as such shouldn't cause bloat.
The mass emergence events do happen, and as frequently as once a month, there's even footage of people around the rift lakes more or less eating bug burgers with all the midges that come off the lake. :p
 

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I'll still recommend for a few reasons:

#1 as this is an Alto venting thread I am, of course giving advice to alto keepers. I would never recommend even a single power feeding to, let's say, tropheus because first, it won't help you to see anything because of the shape of their body.

#2 Altos are predators meaning, as darkside, it's normal for them to hit it pretty hard here and there and krill or cherry shrimp are about as close to Tanganyikan shrimp as you're gonna get.

#3 Think about it. How much can an alto, or any predacious fish eat. They're not grazers like tropheus or goldfish. They can't just keep eating krill. remember that shrimp/krill are anywhere .5" to 1.5" . I don't know how big your altos are but mine are pretty big and even my biggest male at 6" cannot finish 1 entire krill at 1". I generally tear it in half for him whereupon he will suck one half and then the other, chew and swallow the first piece (Which takes him about 15 minutes) and then he'll blow the excess piece out not being able to eat any more. The females or some other, carnivore in the tank then has dibs.
(The only way you could kill an Alto with krill is by poisoning the water with excess krill or by strapping dynamite to the krill. Or the other way around makes more sense I think! :lol: )

#4 for 31 years I have never lost an Alto to bloat. I've lost more fish to power outages and a brain farts than to illness.

#5 It has not been proven what causes bloat in the first place. research actually supports dirty water and stress as the main trigger. I suspect that a lot of what we're seeing which we think is the generic "bloat" is actually swim bladder infections and goiter issues but I admit that is only my opinion.

I suppose I could be a bit more thorough when /if I say "power feeding" in that I mean feed them well. Altos however have a tendency to show their stomachs full/empty status due to the fact that they're high and flat shaped thus the stomach is horizontally constricted by their physiology in the first place.

The main reason I use frozen krill (Never freeze dried because it expands inside the fish causing "bloat" :wink: ) is because of the way they eat (see reason #3) it. If I sat their and fed them pellets until I thought they were all full bellied I word of course be overfeeding them an excessively rich food (My staple foods are NLS and Dainichi so fish don't need much to get the nutrients of say a cherry shrimp since it's, in effect, concentrated) which may cause problems. Although those "problems" would still, most likely, be related to how water quality was effected more than the fact that I overfed them once.

Bottom line is that all my carniverous tanks get krill once a week. If I happen to be selling guaranteed pairs or looking for females for my own setups I simply look up their skirts after the NORMAL krill feeding.
 
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