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New Hobby Breeder in Indy!

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Hi all.

I started keeping aquariums a few years back, but with lots of moving and instability I got away from it.

I started with a 5.5 gal and 2 guppies while I was college. Added a betta that eventually got its own mini-tank. Then I added a Bolilvian ram cichlid, and some Corydoras. Then I upgraded to a 38 gal. high tank and started keeping tetras alongside a Severum cichlid along with a mix of cories, loaches, blue rams, and a mix of other fish over several years.

After my post college and grad school years (MS in Genetics) and moving around I gave up the hobby as I was moving quite a bit and not making much money. Now I am settled and work in a new field and decided to get the old 38 gal set up, and less than a week later I'm measuring the shelves in my basement and seeing how many 10's, 20's, and 40's I can fit on them. I figure a fish breeding hobby/sidehustle is a decent use of my (currently unused) genetics/biology knowledge.

The 38 is set up in my dining room.


It's currently cycling with three dalmation mollies. I had four, 2 males, 2 females, but the smaller male didn't make it. I suspect more due to tank politics than water quality.


The nitrate levels are rising and I should be coming back into safe NH4 and NO2 levels soon. (fingers crossed)

And hopefully when that's done, I'll start seeing Molly fry in the tank in the next couple of months.


I look forward to learning from all of you and seeing your aquarium projects!



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I have an acute and severe onset of multi-tank syndrome.


Top shelf: Hardware(air pump, battery backup power strip, etc) and an empty 5.5 gal tank (hospital tank)

Second shelf: 3x 10 gal

Third: 1x 20 gal with a goldfish (free gift when I signed up for a pet store rewards membership card thingy)

Fourth: 1 x 20 gal


Sorry for the blur. He's a little skittish.

Also talked with the guy who manages the aquarium department at the store. He's open to buying from local breeders... if they've got something cool. Said he might buy 1-2 dozen of the usuals, but won't pay more than he would from the wholesaler, but he'd pay more for interesting/exotic/oddball fish, and that he'd be interested in most cichlids.

So there's an in.

I also went to my local aquarium club's meeting last night. We had presenter who told us all about freshwater stingrays which was cool, and I got to know some of the local aquarists.

Edited by jahvala
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Went back to the pet store looking for some cories, meds, and heaters, and walked out with 4 Bolivian Rams



They're on the small side yet. I put them in one of the 10 gal. and treated it with a broad spectrum parasite medication just in case. They seem happy, healthy and active on the whole. I had a single one of these years ago (my first cichlid) and today  I learned why they're called rams... they butt head with each other. I've also had German blues, but never saw them do that exactly. I put the terracotta drip trays in there on the off chance I get a mating pair and they start nesting. So long as they seem happy I'll leave them in there.


At the store, they were marked as German Blues, but to my eye they are not and look like Bolivians, except for this one...


The one in back has more yellow, the red banded eye, but it's body coloration looks mostly like a typical Bolivian, even with the pink on the tips of the fins. But then there's more blue on the body, and it's face is more round with it's mouth positioned higher. So it's almost like a hybrid... maybe? Or is it something else? I look at it and at first glance I'm like "That's a ram." Then I look closer, and I'm like, but it's not a Bolivian, it's kinda like a blue, but that face... is it even a ram at all?"


Then I ordered six Julidochromis transcriptus  that ought to arrive this week. So for the first round of breeding attempts I'm going to have Bolivian Rams, Masked Julies, and A Colony of Mollies.

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