So I posted on here some months back about stocking suggestions and after sage advices from Fishlady I went for a couple of sajica. By chance it appears that I have a breeding pair - not successful yet but certainly displaying breeding behaviour.
The change in colouration of the female in particular is quite dramatic, I still can't get my head around the way that her body turns almost black and her eyes change from a jade blue to gold. (Incidentally is that normal - conflicting info online)
However, and whilst I favour slightly understocked tanks, I am thinking the tank is a little too empty. It's a 240l and current stock is the sajica pair, a 2 inch L204 and a 3 inch bristlenose. Water on the hard side, ph approaching 8.
I know stocking fish with a breeding pair of cichlids can be problematic, however the tank is very carefully aquascaped with plenty of wood and rock formations.
Recently as a (carefully monitored) test I added a few guppies from another of my tanks temporarily. I found that the territory the sajica defended was actually quite small and clearly defined/contained by the scape, generally the sajica didn't seem to view the guppies as a threat - I'm guessing though that if they were to breed successfully and have fry moving about we would be looking at a different ball game.
Does anyone have any thoughts on fish that might make good additions for this tank?
It's always a bit of a risk if they decide to breed, but for your water I'd probably go with a group of Swordtails. They're big enough not to be eaten, pretty quick and will tend to stay near the top level of the tank out of the sajica's way. Another option is a large shoal of Buenos Aires Tetra. These look really good together and at close to 3 inches should be safe from the sajica. I have them in my 5 foot and they shoal together well. Mine were a bit pale and uninteresting when bought, but once settled turned into really attractive fish.
Regarding the change in eye colour - that's normal for some colour variants of the species when breeding
You know I was wondering whether I had two different colour morphs. The male seems to be more yellow and blue whereas the female darker, perhaps even purple-ish. The fin colouration doesn't seem to hold true either, (according to my research) both having goldish fins.
I'll try to post pics when I get home, would love to know as my lfs doesn't usually stock sajica and only had the two.. thinking they might have been a rehome job, rather than stock brought from a commercial breeder, in which case all bets are off!
Also live the stocking suggestions, in particular the swords, never kept but often admired and those tetras warrant further thought...
OK, well from the pics I was suspicious that what you have is two females which is why I asked for bigger pics. They still have the look of two females tbh, but at that size they're much too young to reliably sex at the moment. Their gender will become plainer as they grow and mature, but right now the main indicators are ambiguous in both fish.
Colour morphs of these include a gold and a blue version, but there are also a lot of hybrids around which makes it more complicated as you're uncertain of their origin. All the fish in that genus, plus some other CA fish can and do hybridise so they could possibly have Convict, Jade Eye, Red Point or other blood in the mix, though they do look to me like they are mostly T-Bars.
The fact they appear to have spawned isn't proof of a pair as two females will spawn and guard the eggs even though they aren't fertile.
It's possible one is growing a hump, but can't see clearly enough on the pics and at the size they are it's not that likely. The hump tends to develop once they've reached nearer to adult size - they're not even half-grown yet.
Do post more pics as they grow if you're still unsure, though it may become very evident once they hit 4 inches or so.