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Old 01-20-2014, 10:15 PM   #1
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How do I know if I have a pair? (Rams)

I have the HARDEST time telling between male and female GBR's, and my lfs doesn't really know either. Other than spawning, how do I know I have a pair? I was told to get a few and watch for a pair, then bring back any that don't.
So, couple weeks ago I got 3 German blue rams (1.25 inches) from the lfs (all they had), and I'd been watching them. Then started to realize they were all more than likely female, so I was told to get a couple more (preferably male of course).
The lfs got their new stock today and I did my best to try and get what I think are 3 males (2.5 inches).

However, I now fully realize I have no clue what I'm doing (other than spending A LOT of money). I'm getting sorta stressed and frustrated, and I have read so much conflicting information I don't know what to think any more.
So, bottom line, I have 6 German blue rams in my 55 gallon at the moment.(The lfs is willing to take four of them back when the time comes.) I've got two that seem to like hanging out together, BUT, other than actually spawning, how do I know when I have a pair?
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Old 01-20-2014, 10:21 PM   #2
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How do I know if I have a pair? (Rams)

And in case it matters or anyone finds it relevant. My water parameters are
Ammonia 0
Nitrite 10
Nitrate 0
Gh 75
Kh 30
Ph 6.8
Temp 79f
I'm not trying to breed, I just want harmony.
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Old 01-20-2014, 11:20 PM   #3
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If this was the stupidest thing you've heard of for pairing rams, feel free to let me know. I'm confident in my other fish keeping lol. At this point Id just like some input.
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Old 01-20-2014, 11:37 PM   #4
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It's what you have to do sometimes. You don't just buy two rams and expect them to form a pair. I bought 12 from a breeder and still have 4 that haven't paired off. Give them time, be patient. They need to get used to the tank first.
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Old 01-20-2014, 11:39 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DragonFish71 View Post
It's what you have to do sometimes. You don't just buy two rams and expect them to form a pair. I bought 12 from a breeder and still have 4 that haven't paired off. Give them time, be patient. They need to get used to the tank first.

Thank you, at least I know that I haven't truly screwed up... Yet.
This is my first time keeping GBRs.
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Old 01-20-2014, 11:42 PM   #6
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Rams are very sensitive fish. It took years, literally, for me to finally keep them alive more than two weeks. Now I've had many spawns from my pairs and everyone is happy. Be patient and enjoy them. You'll love the little guys, they have such personality.
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Old 01-21-2014, 12:35 AM   #7
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Rams are very sensitive fish. It took years, literally, for me to finally keep them alive more than two weeks. Now I've had many spawns from my pairs and everyone is happy. Be patient and enjoy them. You'll love the little guys, they have such personality.

I've heard that, and so far I've seen a little of their personality. (Coming to greet me when I approach the tank and so forth.) So I really want this to work out. I think my water parameters are good, because I've heard they like a lower ph. Im normally used to trying to up my ph in other and previous tanks. I'm testing daily. What do you think?
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Old 01-23-2014, 06:45 PM   #8
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Let me know how you figured out which is male/female. I am getting two on Monday. I do know that Rams need impeccable water quality though.
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Old 01-23-2014, 07:30 PM   #9
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The only definite I have found (and isn't always present) is females will have a pink belly (but only when attracting a male).
In general... the first 3 spikes on the males dorsal fin (top fin) are substantially longer than the rest of the dorsal fin, and the pelvic fin (bottom front fins) are usually long enough that when put back, they almost touch the tail fin (reaching past the anal fin).
Good luck.

I am thinking about taking one male and one female out of this tank and putting them in my 20 gallon long. Just to lower the stress in my tank right now and still give them a chance to pair, but idk.
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Old 01-23-2014, 07:34 PM   #10
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if the GBRs don't work out for you, Bolivians are much more forgiving fish to keep, and they're much easier to sex.
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