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Rams: Bullying, Sexing & General Advice

Subject: Rams: Bullying, Sexing & General Advice
by jonnyunlimited on 6/5/2008 21:49:07

We've just got our first Rams. All very exciting but it's only day two and problems already. We got them from http://www.harrogateaquatic.co.uk. Bit of a drive but they seem to have pretty well cared for aquariums and it was the only place I could find Rams local to us (apart from ballon rams).

Ideally I was after a Paired couple as I'm not planning on getting nay more and would like to attempt breeding. Was advised thier stock was still to juvinile and had not begun to pair off but they could definately pick out a male and female whitch would do me fine. If they don't pair up its no big deal as these are our first but there's always hope :)

Got them home but I'm not convinced they are opposite sex as they both seem to have the same fin lengths and body shapes. I can notice a pink belly on either. The only main difference is that one has a slightly more vibrant Orange hue from nose to middle. This fish is supposedly the male.

Got them settled into a mature 60ltr tank that is also home to 8 WCMM, 2 Amano Shrimp and an Apple snail. Amonia 0, NitrIte 0, Nitrate 20, pH 7.4

OK So my first mistake is the tank is too small? These guys are about 1&1/4 inch long nose to tail. The tank is temporary and will be upsizing to at least 100ltr in the neer future. Also the pH is up. I know Rams should be more acid to neutral. I got the LFS to test the pH they were keeping them at and they were 7.2 so I figured perhaps it would be ok... (yeah, I know, I know - I', in denial)

OK So no real problems so far other than the slightly less bright Ram (supposedly female) Is Bullying the Brighter (supposedly Male) Ram. I'm guessing this is because of the tank size. There's quite a lot of plants in there and slate caves etc but no matter where the "male" decides to hang out the "female". It's a pretty one sided teretorial battle so far. I've switched off the lights. Should I split them up until I can get a bigger tank up and running or should I just leave it a few days and let them get it over with? Are they fighting because they are two males in a small tank or is it the female thats the agressor? Any Ideas?

In the mean time I might just make a few more hidy holes and I'll get some pictures uploaded if anyone can help with the sexing. All advice welcome. Gunna have a look through Tetra Linz's posts for some pointers. Get a picture up later tonight. Thanks :)

(ps scuse the spelling - as usual ;)