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Black Rams Spawn: To Pull Fry Or Not To Pull Fry?


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Through an incredible stroke of luck, I bought four black rams (or black blue rams, whatever you want to call them) and ended up with two pairs. I noticed two pair off in the tanks and decided to pull the other two into their own 20 long in my garage. 

This is them pairing off (I think):

I think they’ve spawned at least once, but I haven’t seen any fry in their 46 gallon tank with tetras and corys. I’m thinking about separating them into their own tank and spawning that way. But this story isn’t about them…

This story is about the other pair that I pulled out and isolated in their own tank. They ended up also pairing off and spawning on their own. I saw them digging pits and guarding an area of the tank, but I couldn’t see any eggs so I didn’t realize they had actually spawned until one day, I noticed about 30-40 fry crowding around the parents. I was a little over-zealous with trying to make everything perfect in the tank, stressed them out and they ended up eating the spawn. 

I kicked myself, did a water change, ordered some more plants to give the fry stuff to eat and vowed to leave them alone on the next spawn.

My plants are suppssed to be delivered tomorrow, but of course, I catch them laying eggs again tonight, which is actually a pretty cool process. I tried to be minimally invasive to avoid spooking them, so I didn’t get the male fertilizing the eggs:

There’s obviously a few plants in there (moss balls, an anubias nana petite, and a small clump of java fern) and I have a brine shrimp hatchery I’ve been conditioning them with and First Bites, so I’m not super worried about them having stuff to eat.

But this the first time I’ve been able to see the eggs and they’re on an easily-removable piece of wood, so I’m wondering whether I should take them out or not? I’ve watched Dean’s ram breeding video about 20 times, so I know what I’d need to do if I did pull them out but I also know it’s a little easier if the parents can raise the fry. I’m just nervous about them getting eaten again. The tank is in the garage, so their stress level should be minimal, but I also have two very noisy children who aren’t always cognizant of their surroundings.

These rams are super cool and I’d love to have more of them and extra space/tanks isn’t an issue. Does anybody have any insight on how to maximize their survival rate or any pertinent advice?



Edited by B1gJ4k3
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