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Gold Ram

Gold Ram

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Mikrogeophagus
ramirezi var.

Note:
Due to variations within species, your item may not look identical to the image
provided.



































Synonyms



Apistogramma ramirezi, Papiliochromis ramirezi



Distribution



Original wild form is known from the Orinoco
River basin in Venezuela and Colombia.



Sexual Dimorphism



Males with extended rays on the front of the
dorsal fin. Females with a more rounded belly.



Maximum Size



5cm (2?)



Temperature



25-30 deg C (77-86 deg F)



Water Parameters



Soft and acidic. pH: 5.0-7.0, dH: up to 8
degrees.



Compatibility



Softwater community



Lighting



No special requirements


 

Care

 

The Gold Ram is a
tank-bred colour strain of the Ram. In the wild, Rams are known from the
Colombian and Venezuelan Llanos of the Orinoco River drainage. The Llanos is a
vast, periodically flooded tropical grassland plain with an astonishing biodiversity
and its own well defined weather comprising dry and rainy seasons. Rams are a
peaceful, but delicate dwarf cichlid species that are recommended for
experienced aquarists. The home aquarium should contain soft, acidic water and
be biologically mature before these fishes are added. Ideally there will be
dark substrate and dense planting, with plenty of hiding places/territories
amongst rocks, driftwood, upturned flower pots, coconut shells etc. Floating
plant cover could be used to help diffuse the light. Peat filtration and the
addition of dried Indian Almond Leaves (Terminalia catappa) would be beneficial
to help create the favoured conditions. Filtration should be efficient, but
water movement gentle, and frequent partial water changes should be carried out
in order to keep nitrate at a minimum (essential for the successful keeping of
this species). Rams are best maintained as a male-female pair in a peaceful
community setting, and should not be housed with any aggressive species which
may bully them. Small groups of Rams can be kept together, but you may find
that certain fish pair off, and when breeding, they can become a little
territorial towards others. Tankmates should be small and peaceful and good
companions could include Corydoras catfish, hatchetfish, pencilfish, small
tetras, and suckermouth catfish.

 

Feeding

 

Flake, micropellets,
small frozen foods such as bloodworm, white mosquito larvae, vitamin-enriched
brineshrimp and daphnia.

 

Breeding

 

To breed Gold Rams,
the aquarium water must be very soft (<5 dH) with a pH <7.0. The water temperature
should be set at the high end of their preferred range. Females can lay up to
400 eggs (although 250 is a typical average sized brood), which both male and
female will take turns in guarding and fanning with their pectoral fins. These
eggs should hatch after 48-72 hours and the fry will become free-swimming after
5 days, at which stage they can be offered tiny foods such as infusoria and
microworms, moving on to larger foodstuffs as they grow. The parent fish will
herd the youngsters around the tank, protecting them from any potential
predators. If you wish to ensure a high survival rate for your eggs/fry, it
would be prudent to set up a dedicated breeding tank for this purpose.