Planted Tank Guru
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Elk Grove, California
The rams from LFS are often very sad specimens. This is because they are bred/farm-raised in very tight quarters and suffer from pathogens because of this. One of the most common illnesses they suffer is Hexamita. Hexamita is a protozoan infection that attacks the gut. Once stressed, this protozoa can very rapidly undermine the fish. It is often what is to blame when a new aquarist puts these fish in their tank where it appears that the fish "suddenly stopped eating, grew weak listless, thin and died".
In addition, many of the rams you see at the LFS (that are farm-raised) are sent out as young juveniles. They have not yet developed their full coloration ( or their immune systems, for that matter). These colors come into full effect when fish become sexually mature- between 6-8 months.
The photos on the internet are most likely taken when they are at their full maturity. It is an amazing sight to see the vivid colors of a healthy spawning male and female. They look nothing like the puny specimens you see at LFS.
There is also lot of color variation/intensity between line-bred German Rams. Some have more blue, others more intense black, and others yellow. Depends on the genetics of the parents. I have a spawn of fry right now that is a hybrid of EBR/GBR that are a very beautiful powder blue. Not the intensity of electric blue color you would see on an Electric Blue ram, but more intense blue than you would see on a German Ram.
If you want rams, buy from a local breeder. If you dont know of one, contact your nearest aquarium society and get a name of a breeder. There should be someone in your locality that breeds them.
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