I'm leaning to Apistogramma Barlowi F1. They're mouth brooders. Looks really interesting.
If that's the case then I might go with the Borelli - Red Cheek, wish I could find a picture of one.
Quite interesting choice on the A. barlowi
!! Not easy to source either.
I think most often A. borellii
w/ red cheeks are called the "Opal" strain. You could try googling this for more available images. Although "Opal" most often have the blue body coloring w/ red cheeks. Not sure if just "Red Cheeks" may mean that the body coloring is different. I'd be sure to ask the seller.
I really like my A. borellii
"Opal"s. I love fish w/ blue coloring, it just seems magical. Like finding true blue flowers in the garden - it's just rare. I think that's why neon and cardinal tetras remain so popular. A. borellii
are a tamer, smaller species that could be stocked in higher densities.
Where is a good place to look information and buy some on-line.
Most of the Apistogrammas
I have in my 'fish-room(s)' have come from mail order. I've had some very good experiences, and some not so good.
My best experiences have been w/ Ryan @ Twofishguys: http://www.twofishguyz.com/comersus/...ersus_home.asp
He does have a higher shipping minimum on the website. However, sometimes he post fish on Aquabid and you can grab some real steals. His packing and shipping is excellent! I've ordered from Ryan three times and always been happy.
Also great quality, shipping and good prices from Chris Moscarell. You can find him over at the Apistogramma Forum: http://forum.apistogramma.com/showth...?t=7819&page=3
Definitely would/will not hesitate to order from Chris again.
Unfortunately, my own personal experience w/ Apisto Dave was quite poor. The packing left a lot to be desired. I did not get accurate m/f ratios or even all the correct species ordered. Now, I do know he is a icon in the fish world for his work w/ apistos and some of his fish are gorgeous. Yet, perhaps business-wise, sometimes a little careless?!?!? Unfortunately, if something is wrong w/ your order, you
are the one responsible to repay any additional shipping charges. And shipping can be as much as - or more than - the cost of the fish. I was charged $70.00 to ship in just one box of just eight fish from Apisto dave! That was the first time and will be the only time.
Some additional tips on shipping fish.
I personally would never use Priority Mail in the winter or during heat waves in summertime. If you're willing to pay guaranteed overnight freight, and the shipper uses styro and a heatpack, winter is just fine.
Plan to be home all
day, the day your fish should arrive. YOU - not your wife, mother, brother, sister, cousins, roommate. . . etc., etc. It is important to provide immediate care. If there is anything wrong w/ the fish it also must be reported immediately. Have your plan of action ready and in place. QT tank(s) up and running. I like to ask the seller beforehand what water parameters - KH, GH, pH, temps - the fish are being held/raised in. This is where having a QT tank really helps, because you can set your water close to this. Then gradually move closer to your regular water. Also you are not dumping a fish straight from shipping stress into the stress of a CO2 injected tank.
Drip acclimating fish shipped overnight - let alone two days - is a NO-NO. Slice the bag w/ scissors, pour out thru a net, immediately into the tank ready w/ clean, fresh H20. It's important to remove the fish from the dirty water A.S.A.P.
With even the best shipper you will probably have one or two losses. Expect this.
With schooling fish, don't order six if you want six. Order eight or nine. Probably eight will live . . .and besides eight will look better than six anyway. If ordering pairs or trios. Well, on a trio it's most often the male that ends up dying and leaving you then w/ two girls. Ugh! With just a pair, it doesn't matter if the male or female dies, both ways you're now S.O.L. I've learned the hard way.
If D.O.A., the supplier will send you another fish - but you
will have to repay the shipping. It is often a lot cheaper to order an extra pair and give them away to a friend, or auction at fish club, then pay that shipping fee again. Its fun to be generous too!
But keep those extra fish for a few weeks before you let them go. Especially if you really
want a particular species. Make sure your chosen pair(s) are out of QT; settled-in; disease free; happy with your H2O and their new digs; also pleased w/ each other. If you do want to breed, get your first successful spawn before giving up the extras. (Unless your buddy is better at this then you are.
If you have my luck, the male/female you'll end up losing, will die a week to ten days later. Now you have to pay for another pair and
the shipping fee. If you order two or three different species, the one male you loose WILL be the species you particularly want the most!!!!! Trust me on this.
One last point, when shipping Apistogrammas
, keep a close eye out for fin rot on their fancy tails. I've had this happen on multiple occasions. Something about the shipping seems to bring this on. It's not a fungus but bacterial. And don't bother w/ those natural remedies - Pimafix or Melafix. Get some real drugs - E.M.: Erythromycin, works great and turns this around fast.