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sexing blue ram, help!! (with photos)
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2la
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Joined: 05 Feb 2003
Location: St. Paul, MN

PostPosted: 2005.11.15(Tue)22:46    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think what's most amusing here is the irony that people are using a guideline that I first introduced here years ago against me! Shocked

I'm not quite sure if people just aren't understanding my points or are just choosing to ignore them, so I'll give this one more go, with pictures to illustrate in the hopes that it at least makes things clearer--even if people still aren't swayed by my case.

Take the following fish: male or female?


How about this one: male or female?


And this one: male or female?


And the last:


All have blue "spangling" overlying the black spot, so they all must be females, right?

Hopefully there are those of you that are saying, wait a minute--something's not quite right. That 1st and 2nd fish look more like each other, and they both look different from the last two fish for some reason. And you'd be right.

The blue "spangling" that the first two fish have seems different from that of the last two fish. So how would you describe the difference? I actually already did it above, but I'll reiterate: The spangling associated with female rams are punctate, sharply demarcated, and are more intense than the uniformly intense, 'smudgy' spangling that covers the entire body of males. Yes, males have so-called spangling, too! But, the spangling on females associated with the black spot looks different--is more distinct--than the irridescent smudged 'spangling' that covers the rest of the body in females and the entire body--black spot included--in males.

And guess what? The fish with the least prominent black spots--the last two fish--are the males! I've never used that black spot by itself as a guide to sexing rams--most fish exhibit variable intensity in their black markings, particularly rams, apistos, and other South American dwarf cichlids, be they males or females.

And where are the spines on the latter two fish, if they're males? They don't develop till later when the fish are long in the tooth, and in fact I"ve seen females with a prominent third spine as well. Anterior dorsal spines are too unreliable to use as distinguishing feature by themselves.

Now, here's the kicker, and one that can more readily be used as a sexing trait in some specimens than others--this case being a prime example. Look at the photos of the first two fish--the females--and take note both of how long and in what shape the posterior ends of the dorsal and anal fins are. In both, they are blunt or rounded and barely reach, but never go past, the start of the tail fin.

Now compare that to the 3rd and 4th fish--the males: In both, the posterior parts of the dorsal and anal fins are pointed and reach past the start of the tail fin.

Now compare the first two fish with the last two fish with the fish posted in the thread starter here. Look at all the traits I mentioned above. If you still think that either of these fish are females, well, I won't (or can't! Wink) stop you from believing so. But if namek's first fish ever lays eggs, I, as a matter of honor and complete humility, will never post here again. And if that second fish of namek's ever lays eggs, I won't post here ever again, either. Well, maybe for just six months in the latter case. Wink I'm only 98% sure that that one's not a female...

Signing off!

2la Smile
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McP
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Joined: 24 Jul 2004

PostPosted: 2005.11.16(Wed)8:14    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is it just me or does this thread not have best of the board potential?
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namek
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Joined: 13 Nov 2005

PostPosted: 2005.11.16(Wed)10:07    Post subject: Reply with quote

2la,

thank you for your explanation, one question, beeing two males, shouln't there be fighting? because they don't really fight, nr 1 just chases nr2, nr 2 runs away, there is never a fight! and nr2 is the same size as nr1 and they were introduced to the tank at the same time...

thank you again Wink
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2la
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Joined: 05 Feb 2003
Location: St. Paul, MN

PostPosted: 2005.11.16(Wed)22:37    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fights only occur between two evenly matched fish, be it in terms of size, strength, aggressiveness, speed, color, or a combination of such. Chasing occurs when there is a dominant fish, which is the situation you have. The weaker male is smart (or instinctual) enough to avoid a fight by fleeing.
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leslie ferguson
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Joined: 02 Aug 2005
Location: amarillo,texas

PostPosted: 2005.11.17(Thu)11:56    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have to agree with McP that was one of the clearest and to the point articals I have read on here. If more people on here would post clear and to the point like that is. More of use on here would be able to understand 3/4 of the stuff said. (by use I mainly mean me being as I'm not the brightest light bulb in the box ).

Now I got a question for you 2la you said this hold ture in must rams and apisto's does it hold for bolivian rams as will?

By this I mean the part about the dorsal fin not reaching the start of the tail fin?

I myself have been watching this tread because I've to been trying to sex bolivian rams because I have what I thought to be a male whitch after reading this I now know it's a male if the part about the dorsal fin hold on bolivian's. Thats been chasing another ram around the tank a lot ( whitch the same apleas here to the dorsal fin doesn't reach the tail fin ) so now I know is a female from reading this if like I was asking. This works on bolivian rams.

And let me add this before I go. That was an awsome peice of reading there and I got a crap load of info from it. So I say thank you and keep write post like that ( easy to understand and to the point )
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2la
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Joined: 05 Feb 2003
Location: St. Paul, MN

PostPosted: 2005.11.18(Fri)22:11    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't have as much experience sexing Bolivian rams, leslie, so I may not be of much help there. People often use the upper and lower extensions on the caudal fins as a factor, but only older males have these. I tend to use a combination of abdominal fullness (females having bigger, more rounded bellies) and dorsal fin extensions (longer in males, which tends to be a more consistent finding in this species compared to the blue ram).
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leslie ferguson
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Joined: 02 Aug 2005
Location: amarillo,texas

PostPosted: 2005.11.19(Sat)6:40    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you anyway I went to a local fish dealer here yesterday and got me a couple more female useig the 2la mathed and the owner of the store afforded me a job because he said he and 3 of his workers had been asked to give m/f blue rams every time they sold some and that they just always got two out of the tank and told the buyers there you go because they couldn't tell the differnts between the two.

I told him how to tell the differnts and for showing him and 2 of the workers how to tell the difernts between the 2 sexes he sold me two females for 75% off. LOL LOL Made me feel smart by being able to do that. LOL On my bolivian rams there is a large differntes in the dorsel fins just like the blue and the gold rams.

I just looked at the bellie area and the one I thanks the male has a flat bellie compeared to the other ones bellie whitch is roumded in the frontal area more then the other is.Let just finish this post with afew remarks about your post again . It was the easyest post to read and under stand because not all of us r the sicencetiest like most on here r. Us comman folk have a hard time reading and understanding some of the answers we get on here because must of it is above our heads. But that post wasn't and it was str8 to the point and is to read.

So thank you for putting it in layman terms for us in the lower levels of the smarts like me . LOL LOL
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early riser
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Joined: 25 Aug 2005
Location: Sunny California, USA

PostPosted: 2005.12.27(Tue)9:52    Post subject: Reply with quote

Would the same rules apply to balloon rams? I've decided I have one female blue ram (yay!) but I'm unsure as to my balloon ram. Also, will a blue ram and balloon ram breed? I'm thinking they probably won't but would like confirmation. Great thread by the way - very educational.
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Wanderer
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Joined: 22 May 2005
Location: Fairbanks Alaska

PostPosted: 2005.12.27(Tue)20:28    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks! I'll second the motion to add this post to the "best of board". I'm now very confident my lone Ram is male, and will know what to look for if I decide to get him a companion.

I'll try and get a photo, if I can get him to hold still (named 'spaz' for a reason), his front fins are very long and pointed, almost looks like he's part angelfish. And his irredecent spangles uniformly cover his entire body, including his very distinct black spot. The black even extends up to the top of his first 3 dorsal spines. Easily my favorite fish both for appearance and behavior.

Phil
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