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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
just wondering, i heard that wild caught convicts looks tons different then the typical convict seen in stores today, if this is true, does anyone have a pic of a wild caught convict to share?
 

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dogofwar said:
which are quite different from the hybridized ones available at most LFS
Just to set the facts strait, aquarium strain convicts are possibly a hybrid of strains (crosses of cons from different collection points, maybe) but are not nessessarily a cross of different species. The florida fish farms suplied the hobby for many years, not to mention the fact they are very easily bred and were subsequently distributed between aquarists for many decades. Cons go way, way back and are one of the first cichlids ever imported, and were a long with the angelfish, the first cichlids to become popular. No real reason to suppose that convicts were ever innitially imported more then once, and any extremely rare importation afterwards probably had little to no effect on the general aquarium population. Availability of wild caught CA is a fairly recent thing, and still with an aquarium convict population as large and wide spread, probably has yet to have any significant impact on it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
so i guess really by the sounds of it they are the same looking, i was told males head shape was completely different then in aquarium bred. i was wondering mostly cause i just got a couple convicts that look a lot buffer then my original, yet they were fed less, but the head shape is a bit more buff looking.
 

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dogofwar said:
It depends - "wild" convicts are highly variable in appearance and behavior from collection point to collection point.
It is my understanding as well, that even from the same collection point there can be a very large variation in apearances. I have read that some have reported large differences in the apearance of the F1 offspring from some wild caught variants. Aparently convicts, even from the same collection point in the wild, can carry a high degree of variation.

I seen convicts shown ( the angelfish being the other cichlid) in aquarium books that are pre- wwII and older, so they have been in the hobby for a very long time. When you consider that in the wild,( if a population has reached an equilibrium, which it will over time), from a male and a female, only 2 fish fish will survive to maturity to reproduce and carry on the species. Out of thousands of offspring produced in a fishes life time, only 2 make it in the wild. In captivity, right from the F1 generation you have potentially thousands of genetic lines that would have never made it in the wild. Now multiply that over many generations, as convicts have been in captivity much longer then most cichlids, and one can see that it could produce a high degree of variation in the aquarium population.
 

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I have bread some convicts, and I have 9 of which I am pretty sure are all males, they have all grown up together (4 adults, 5 children of one of the adults) all roughly the same size (close to full grown), some are pink some are regular convicts,

there is a large amount of variation in the head shapes

Some have very large head lumps, some have almost no head lump (looks more like a female shape, but no orange in the belly)
 

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Yep, tank bred convicts will not have the genetic strength of wild caught fish. Just due to no real environmental stresses and survival testing. Not much work chomping at floating pellets...not to mention no predators other than the top of the food chain aquarium net ;)

I've seen photos of wild pairs and they definitely have much more going on than your usual LFS sold ones.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
its not the hump im really talking bout, its the actual head shape, these news guys heads almost look like a Nic's head, not really, but bulky like that.

thanx for the replys everyone, didnt think id get many on another convict thread.
 

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Well, if the new split of the convicts is excepted, then our aquarium could very well be hybrids of species as the early convict import areas represent two differant ones of the newly described species. It will be a mess. :lol:
 

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I keep and breed the following "wild" and F1 convicts:
- Amatitlania nigrofasiatus from Rio Choluteca
- Amatitlania siquia from Rio Claro
- Amatitlania siquia from Lago Nicaragua
- Amatitlania sp. Honduran Red Points from Rio Monga

I also have a pair of LFS pink convicts.

They're all quite different fish.

I would consider crosses of any of them to be different than any of them individually. Whether you want to call that a "hybrid" or not is up to you.

Convicts have been bred for years (including by me) without regard to their origin. It's safe to say that any convict that came from a Florida fish farm is a hybrid...or at least is "different" than any fish found in the wild. To definitively prove otherwise is pretty darn hard!

That said, there's nothing wrong with LFS convicts. I enjoy mine. Even if they are (what at least I consider) hybrids.
 
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