I recently acquired a new variant of managuense. There are a total of nine (five/four) in two tanks. I have a breeding pair in each of the two tanks. Here's a picture of the female in tank #1
She is about three inches long...about half the size of the next largest female in the tank. I have often wondered on mate selection. Why not pick the obviously larger of the two women? Wouldn't that suggest stronger and therefore better chance of moving the genetic line further? Dunno. Maybe dominance isn't something the male is seeking.
The breeding male is about six inches long...and an inch longer than the sub-dominant male...who is getting a mild beating and will be removed shortly.
I also note that the breeding male is much darker in color. Beautiful pattern...
Regardless of size, one thing remains consistent...and that's cichlid attitude. After a weekly large water change of 75%, the pair slips into breeding. Most of the fish have their own "space". The pair has occupied a large ceramic cave on the left side of the tank. Woe to the fish that comes into mamma's space....the Metynsis dithers being the exception.
There are three about four inches in size. I use these in most of my big tanks. They make exceptional dithers and targets.
Here's the female dropping that operculum to show irritation. You can see one of the Metynsis in the background well behind her line of defense...ignored.
Of course all this is hard work. Caught her in mid yawn.
Finally....for those interested in the lighting set up for these photos...or how I prepared the tank...here's how it was done:
Today in the Fishroom ~ making a Photo Tank.wmv - YouTube