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My first Apistos! (nijsseni)

Discussion in 'Apistogramma' started by leafish, Jul 2, 2012.

  1. leafish

    leafish New Member

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    Ever since I saw some Apistos at the store I've been researching them to make sure that they'll do well in my tank. It's 75 gallons and has lots of plants and flower pots etc. It has two marineland bio wheel filters. These are the fish that are in it (I've been going a bit fish-crazy lately):

    Tank #1:
    1 Bulldog or rubberlip pleco
    1 Bristlenose pleco
    1 Honeycomb Tatia 3
    1 Marble Angelfish (David Boreanaz) 6
    2 Creamsicle Mollies
    1 Farlowella Cat 6-8
    3 Peppered Loach 4-6 in wild smaller in aquarium
    3 Zebra loach Botia striata 4
    6 Zebra Danio
    4 Pearl Danio
    2 Blue Rams Mikrogeophagus ramirezi 2.7
    5 Kuhli Loach
    1 Spotted Ralphael 8
    3 Ottos
    2 Moth Catfish
    1 Upside down catfish
    3 Marble Hatchetfish
    2 Badis Assamensis
    2 Celebes Halfbeaks
    2 Apistogramma nijsseni 3 (pronounced neisseni)

    I hope y'all think it'll be fine because I already bought the fish. 17 dollars a pop too, which makes them the most expensive fish I have by far. The numbers and stuff are just notes that I have on my list like full grown size, etc. and sorry that I don't have all the latin names listed. Oh, and I know the spotted ralph is a bit ridiculous in the setup, he's only about 2 inches now and is a slow grower though. He also spends all his time in a cave.
  2. leafish

    leafish New Member

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    Here's some pictures. It turns out that it's really difficult to take picture of moving fish. Who woulda though.. the whole tank.JPG apistos together.JPG
  3. leafish

    leafish New Member

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  4. Mike Wise

    Mike Wise Moderator Staff Member

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    IMHO you are 'bottom heavy' (not you, your tank:)); too many bottom dwellers. You may do OK but if anyone loses out, it will be your Rams.
  5. leafish

    leafish New Member

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    Haha, yeah, I like catfish and loaches a bit too much. All the fish are doing really well so far. I think the Ram, Badis, Apisto is kind of nice. They're similar enough that it fulfills my need for cichlid personality but not so similar that they can cross breed or have con-specific issues. So many of the fish are hiders and/or diggers that it doesn't seem nearly as full as it is. I guess I might have some issues as they grow though.

    The honeycomb tatia is one of cutest and weirdest fish ever, I highly recommend them.
  6. leafish

    leafish New Member

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    Can anyone, based on the pictures I provided, tell me what type of Nijsseni I have? What's funny is that while poking around the inet I found the Mike Wise Apisto list (hi Mike!) but now I'm more confused. I thought that what I have are A. nijsseni and that A. panduro are similar but different. Now I'm understanding that A. panduro is a part of the same species group. So when they were listed as Nijsseni at the store that could mean many things.

    Also, and this is a total newcomer question, when does the intense appearance distinction for gender come into play? The guy at my LFS picked what he thought might be male and female but said they were a bit young to sex easily. I know the internet loves to hate on the LFS but my place, The Fish Place in Tonawanda, NY, is pretty solid. Anyways, I know the male develops a "blue sheen," but when does that happen? So far one is larger than the other and is more colorful but it's the dark black and vibrant yellow that is more distinct... no blue can be found on either. The bigger one is definitely dominant but that doesn't necessarily have anything to do with gender.

    Also, Mike, you warned that I'm a bit "bottom heavy" and that my rams would be the ones to lose out. One of my rams has a large chunk removed from his forehead. The strange thing is that other than that there is no sign of aggression. All of the fish in the tank have very healthy fins, no nipping there. Maybe I'm naive but I think it may have bashed into something. I never witness any aggression.
  7. Mike Wise

    Mike Wise Moderator Staff Member

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    Well, I can't ID or sex your fish based on the 2 available photos. I find that one of the best ways to sex young adult A. nijsseni is to look at the gill cover (operculum). Females will develop a black patch that covers most of the operculum; males will have a cheek stripe. The nijsseni-group has at least 10 different species. Some are easy to separate; others take more careful study. My guess is that you have A. nijsseni because they were sold as this species - and A. nijsseni is not especially rare in the trade. I suggest that you be patient and see what develops.

    Your Ram may have injured itself or possibly had a 'run-in' with one of the loaches or plecos during the night. My warning about the Rams is because you have a lot of bottom dwelling fish that each want a piece of the bottom for their own. If your A. nijsseni decide they want to breed, they will work together as a pair to attack any fish in the territory that they claim. The plecos are armored and the loaches are fast. The Rams are neither and will be the easiest to attack and damage.
  8. leafish

    leafish New Member

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    Thanks for the advice! The one seems to have more of its gill covered with black and the other has more of a thick line crossing it so I think (and hope) I have a male and female.

    I did some research on the hole in the rams head and, well, there's a disease called Hole in the Head Disease which seems spot on. http://www.worldcichlids.com/diseases/Adamhith.html The bruises on the fish look identical to what is happening with my Ram.

    Some of the causes are due to stress and water quality. I'm pretty good about water changes and generally feel that I have a healthy tank with healthy fish so I'm going to move some of the loaches out and put them with my Leopard Ctenopoma. Hopefully that along with even more of a rigorous water change schedule will help. I'm rather fond of the Ram.
  9. leafish

    leafish New Member

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    And I fail.

    The two apistos seemed totally fine. One was larger than the other and would mildy harrass the other, but nothing too alarming. Actually, the smaller one had some nipped fins when I bought it and they were healing so I felt really good about them. I arrived home today and found the smaller one dead on the bottom with its guts eaten out. I have no idea which fish to accuse.

    I, in the most humane way possible, put the sick ram down. That disease had eaten half his face away and I just didn't want to risk it affecting the other fish.

    I took your advice and cleared out some of the bottom. I put the 3 pepper loaches, 1bulldog pleco and 1 spotted ralph into my other tank where I just have two leaf fish, a platy and two mollies. It's 30 gallons so hopefully that just pushes it to the max and not over.

    Ugh, what a day.

    I want to try again with finding another Nijsseni but for now I'm just going to hope nothing else goes wrong.

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