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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
well not ME but my fish LOL. My favorite fish, apistogramma cacatuoides. Some of you may remember the last time I tried this and it didn't go very well. I got eggs but they were infertile every time and then I lost one female....then another....I was convinced that my pH was an indication of water softness and didn't bother checking for kH and gH. Once I did and learned the difference, I thought that working with a buffer would be adequate....it wasn't. So I started over to part RO and part tap in a totally new tank and new set-up, but the substrate was Eco complete. I read the bag..."replicates Amazon conditions"....then had more female deaths....checked my kH and gH and whammo. Then I checked the forums and read about other peoples' experiences with Eco....that was the prob. So I left the tank to grow plants, and have been doing total RO water changes since April.

7 months later and my perams were looking spot on. I got excited but then found I had a hard time finding these fish now when it wasn't a problem before. I had 2 males but no females. Got desperate, sought an answer on Aquabid. $97.00 later and I had 4 females coming. Yay? Not so much, because where I work, we got in a bunch of a. cacs for waaay cheaper. Naturally I picked up 4. Lost 1 in a powerhead...sad. So I was glad I ordered some more females for my 2 males.

Then my rockstar male died (he was probably getting too old to breed anyway) which was sad. Got my 4 females today, and now I have 7 females and only 1 male. I was originally shooting for 4 f, 2m. Oh well. In the meantime I have had a 10 gal and 2 5.5's cycling with sponge filters, the right water conditions, bare-bottomed etc. I put 3 of the 4 new females in with the male (one had a cloudy eye that the seller didn't want to do anything about). So there were 6 females and one male...and utter pandamonium! I watched him get overwhelmed then become attached to one female in particular. That was as close to a pair as I was going to get so I separated the two, acclimated them to the 10 gal. The cloudy eye female is in the 5.5 with some maroxy. The rest of the females in the 20 long instantly settled down without the male in there and I will fatten them up and get them nice and conditioned. Luckily he fell in love with the biggest and fattest of the new females.

So here's to hoping this turns out for the best. I am ultimately hoping I will not murder any more fish and then certainly for a successful spawn. I sure learned a lot in the last 9 months. I hope my patience will pay off. I will keep you guys updated and if you all have any suggestions, etc. please share!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Well so far so GREAT...I have eggs, FERTILE eggs! That was fast! Not sure if I should remove the parents or not. I think there may be value in at least leaving mom in there. Maybe the male can go out and find a new girlfriend in the meantime.
 

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Cool. Congrats! Hope you can post pics.
 

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If you have specific questions, I would check the apisto forums:

Apistogramma Forums - The Dwarf Cichlid Connection

They happen to be off line at the moment for server work.
My caca's in my 20 L have bred multiple times, but I have C. sterbai, 2 SAE's, some Emperor Tetras, and some Harlequin Rasboras in there, so they don't last long. I feel kind of bad about it. Hoping some would survive in the the heavy plant cover, but no go.

My understanding is that leaving the parents in is a good idea, but I would check with folks on the apisto forum. Also, waiting between water changes and using slightly colder water on the change can stimulate breeding I've heard (simulates Amazon rain). As for perams, not sure how much pH matters (as long as it is in range generally) other than affecting the sex of the progeny. Cacas have been in the hobbyist aquariums for awhile I think, so they shouldn't need pure black water conditions. Food can also affect breeding conditioning. I could go on, but won't for now.

Congrats, and we all look forward to pics of your kids (i.e. fry) at their life milestones.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
well epicfish, hopefully by the time you do, I'll have some for you!

Unfortunately, I did the hands in the tank too often thing and just wanted to check on the status of the eggs....i know i know! You can slap my wrist! She must have gobbled them up with all my intervention. There were only 4 left and now there are none. I put the pair back in and she's really colored up. I think it was too soon to expect her to be a mom anyway, she had only been with me for a few days. The seller was supposed to send me all females but I think I got some young males too. It actually works out for the better I think. I will hopefully have more eggs in the future..

and ps....I finally have babies from my Endler's! Only 2 so far but it's looking good!
 
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