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pH: 6.8 -7.4
Size: Up to 2 3/4"
Native Region: Rio Apure and Rio Meta in
Columbia-Venezuela border region
Temperament: Usually peaceful, but as with
all cichlids become territorial during breeding
Feeding: Easy. Will accept flake
foods, thawed frozen adult brine shrimp, newly hatched brine shrimp nauplii and
Sexing: Male's dorsal fin is much longer than the female's.
Females are smaller and have a reddish-brown
shade on the abdomen
General Comments: Very
nice and commonly available dwarf cichlid.
The Ram is prized for its winning personality despite its fierce appearance.
With its spiked dorsal fin, low-slung pectoral fins, Papiliochromis ramirezi
appears to be an aquarium bulldog. However, this member of the Cichlidae family
is actually one of the more social and peaceful freshwater fish. In fact, most
Rams will actively swim with equally non-aggressive members of your community
aquarium and are known to faithfully pair with just one other mate.
The German Blue Ram is known for its mottled deep blue splotches of color.
The German Gold Rams have a gold body with hints of pink, orange, and red and
the Electric Blue Rams are just that, electric blue in coloration.
For the best care, the Ram should be kept in an aquarium of at least 20
gallons with several dense plant groups scattered around plenty of open swimming
space. The Ram also needs a few caves in which to hide and, if breeding, flat
stones on which the female can lay her eggs. Though the Ram is very peaceful,
both females and males can become aggressive towards other fish when hiding
places are lacking or when tending to their eggs.
Impeccable water quality is also a must. The Rams breed in soft to medium
hard water with a neutral pH and slightly raised water temperatures between 77°
and 82°F. Peat should be added to the water. Both the male and female share the
rearing of the fry, and it has been reported that the Ram will take fry into
their mouths to protect them like a mouth brooder. Care should be taken so that
the fry are not sucked into the filter.
Rams and Raising Fry
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