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Need Species ID and sexing

MacZ

Member
Hello everybody,

last week I got these two specimens sold as Apistogramma borellii "opal". My research has brought me to the point that I'm doubting the the species ID and the sexing:

Here's the male which looks like either a male-ish borelli "opal" female or probably something completely different:

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And here's the supposed female:

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Mike Wise

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
It definitely is not A. borellii. It looks like an orgeagai-subcomplex species, possibly A. orteagai or a cross of orteagai X cf. orteagai (Pebas). The photos are not good enough for a positive ID. What does the other fish look like?
 

MacZ

Member
Well, that helps at least a bit. I found something similar as A. sp. "Algodon" Thank you!

The second fish is on the last three pictures.

I'll try getting better pictures. I only have a 5 year old smartphone and am very bad at taking pics in general.
 

MacZ

Member
Best pic I could manage to take. The other one is still behind the filter and won't come out. Ist there anything especially needed for an ID? I also agree it must be from the A. ortegai-complex. I know my way around rift lake cichlids but these are my first South Americans. Good start. :D

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MacZ

Member

found this thread, as I live in Germany close to the border to the Netherlands and our dealers often import dutch-bred fish, this could be a hit. But will have to wait until the Male has completely coloured up and hope the female isn't going to be killed by it, as the male is really agressive, even from my point of view as a former breeder of Malawis I find this behaviour extreme.

Apropos Malawis: Back in the day we dispersed the aggression by adding more females. Does that work with Apistos, too? My tank is 80 liters, I'm considering adding just one more.
 

Mike Wise

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
With apistos we normally add more 'structure' to the aquarium to break up the line of sight. When there are more hiding places and fish cannot see across the entire tank there usually is less aggression. "Out of sight, out of mind" as the saying goes.
 

MacZ

Member
With apistos we normally add more 'structure' to the aquarium to break up the line of sight. When there are more hiding places and fish cannot see across the entire tank there usually is less aggression. "Out of sight, out of mind" as the saying goes.

I see. Thanks! :) Similar to getting Mbuna males to stop fighting by placing big rocks between their territories.

This is pretty much the status quo right now, I already cut some of the Elodea and used the cuttings to create a wall on the left. I might have to get more driftwood, then. I've done the most I could do with what I had. But thanks, will see what I can do. I got a big fake giant Vallisneria in a box somewhere, I could use it to build a curtain until the Elodea cuttlings have grown in. Any other advice?

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Larry Rogers

Member
5 Year Member
With the apistos usually a female that colors up male still does not have the points on the fins so I would say the fish is definitely male. Cannot id species from photos but in several of the photos the fish appears stressed and that will cause washed out colors. Tank looks impressive but for apistos i would add some dense background vegetation.
 

MacZ

Member
Thanks. :)

With the apistos usually a female that colors up male still does not have the points on the fins so I would say the fish is definitely male.

And what about the one behind the filter? And yes it's still not coming out there. Hope to see it more often then after a redo planned for saturday. But I'm pretty sure by now that one is a female.

Cannot id species from photos but in several of the photos the fish appears stressed and that will cause washed out colors.

The other fish seems to be in a relatively bright colouration permanently. But yes, some of the fotos where taken on the day I added them and the day after and it has darkened slightly since. I got them for 8 days now. It is still quite young, judging by the size. And the substrate is also bright. Otherwise it doesn't show any signs of stress. Eats, explores the tank, hides, comes out to the front at feeding time and generally patrolling its territory. The usual cichlid behaviours. It's definitely starting to colour up as a red/purple sheen is appearing in the fins (back of dorsal, caudal and anal fin) and the dorsal has developed some more metallic blue. It's getting there slowly.

I'm already working on a redo of the tank. Everything left of the "bank" on the far right get's a redo. Had a longer talk with a specialist in my area. The Vallisneria on the right are coming in strong now, and are actually quite densely planted, hard to see with the bad camera and them not reaching the surface yet. The nymphoides is doing well, too. I'll give them a chance to develop more cover. That's why they were originally added.

I'll try a diagonal barrier of the roots and some river rocks I collected today and fill in the cravisses with the epiphtes, and replant the Elodea in the back on both sides, already got new cuttings. Towards the front I'll build a new leaf litter bed.
 

Larry Rogers

Member
5 Year Member
Thanks. :)



And what about the one behind the filter? And yes it's still not coming out there. Hope to see it more often then after a redo planned for saturday. But I'm pretty sure by now that one is a female.



The other fish seems to be in a relatively bright colouration permanently. But yes, some of the fotos where taken on the day I added them and the day after and it has darkened slightly since. I got them for 8 days now. It is still quite young, judging by the size. And the substrate is also bright. Otherwise it doesn't show any signs of stress. Eats, explores the tank, hides, comes out to the front at feeding time and generally patrolling its territory. The usual cichlid behaviours. It's definitely starting to colour up as a red/purple sheen is appearing in the fins (back of dorsal, caudal and anal fin) and the dorsal has developed some more metallic blue. It's getting there slowly.

I'm already working on a redo of the tank. Everything left of the "bank" on the far right get's a redo. Had a longer talk with a specialist in my area. The Vallisneria on the right are coming in strong now, and are actually quite densely planted, hard to see with the bad camera and them not reaching the surface yet. The nymphoides is doing well, too. I'll give them a chance to develop more cover. That's why they were originally added.

I'll try a diagonal barrier of the roots and some river rocks I collected today and fill in the cravisses with the epiphtes, and replant the Elodea in the back on both sides, already got new cuttings. Towards the front I'll build a new leaf litter bed.
 

Larry Rogers

Member
5 Year Member
Be sure to sanitize river rock before adding it to tank. If you do not you could introduce parasites and infections from North America that your South American cichlids have no immunity to.
 

MacZ

Member
Be sure to sanitize river rock before adding it to tank. If you do not you could introduce parasites and infections from North America that your South American cichlids have no immunity to.

Oh, they are already boiled, no worries. ;)
I live in Germany and I have over ten years experience in the hobby, mostly with east african cichlids, though. I collect rocks from rivers for decades now. ;) Also as a sidenote, they are a south american species, but tankbred, that I made sure. I don't keep wild caught fish anymore.
 

MacZ

Member
Well, I hope this is more like it. Didn't know where to put all the epiphytes, so I incorporated them into the barrier. The Elodea on the left will still have to grow in. The rock/driftwood pile extends from front to back, one can not look through it, and in the back it also completely blocks the view. In the front it blocks at least in the lower third, almost to the middle. Sadly I wasn't able to stack it higher.

photo_2020-08-14_13-56-12.jpg
 

MacZ

Member
Well... lost the female yesterday. Male presumably killed it, as before there were no obvious signs of disease, but the aggression was there all the time.

As there are no A. ortegai available anymore in my area and online purchase is out of the question, I'll keep that guy alone for now until I find a strong female and maybe have a second tank to be able to separate them.
 

MacZ

Member
Aw, that's too bad. I'm sorry that happened.

Thanks. Really sad.
After I've seen how aggressive A. ortegai can be in a youtube video last night... I'll only get a female when I have a second tank to separate them. And I thought I knew "aggressive" from keeping Mbuna for years. Well... I did not.
 
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