New Bolivian Rams - Questions About Quarantine, Damaged Fins - And Help Sexing Them

nikislash

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Hi all, I'm relatively new to fish keeping, and these are my first cichlids.

I bought a group of 4 young bolivian rams this this morning. I'm hoping I can get a pair, then will rehome the other two. They're currently in a 10 gallon quarantine before being added to my main tank. I know it's a bit small, but will a tank this size be fine for a few weeks for quarantine? It's got a mature filter so I'm not worried about ammonia/nitrite, but I'm worried the floor space is just too small for them.

I noticed that they are all missing nicks out of their fins, and one, in particular, has a very ripped up pectoral fin (picture attached). I assume this is from nipping at the store. They were kept in a tank with female bettas, so those could have been the culprits, but I have also noticed them squabbling with each other. Is there anything specific I should be doing to help their fins heal?

Finally, the store tried to help select 2 male and 2 female, but mostly it seemed like they had no idea which is which. Can anyone help from these photos, or are they too young to be able to tell? (face looks distorted in one, but that's just because the corner of the tank is curved)

Thanks in advance - any advice is appreciated.
 

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kayla.s

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OK unfortunately I'm not good sexing Bolivians, GBRs yes, but unfortunately not Bolivians. However I can tell you that all you need is clean water to fix those fins up. 4 rams in such a tight spaces is going to cause some aggression though. I would add lots of plants or something they can hide in
 
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nikislash

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kayla.s said:
OK unfortunately I'm not good seeing Bolivians, GBRs yes, but unfortunately not Bolivians. However I can tell you that all you need is clean water to fix those fins up. 4 rams in such a tight spaces is going to cause some aggression though. I would add lots of plants or something they can hide in
Thanks, I've got a couple plastic cups and a bell ornament in there, along with some plastic plants and a few live floating plants, so hopefully that gives them enough places to hide.

It looks like they're going to have to put up with it for a while, because I just noticed a white spot on the guppy I got at the same time (just the one, the store gave him to me for cheap because he's a wild type and they know I have others that are similar). Nobody's moving out of quarantine now until I know I'm not introducing ich to the display tank.
 

kayla.s

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nikislash said:
Thanks, I've got a couple plastic cups and a bell ornament in there, along with some plastic plants and a few live floating plants, so hopefully that gives them enough places to hide.

It looks like they're going to have to put up with it for a while, because I just noticed a white spot on the guppy I got at the same time (just the one, the store gave him to me for cheap because he's a wild type and they know I have others that are similar). Nobody's moving out of quarantine now until I know I'm not introducing ich to the display tank.
Of course! another option could be to move the filter and the heater to a large bucket of water if that's available to you. Then there would be more space. Just an idea for if the aggressive behavior gets worse.
 

AquaticJ

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Second and fourth picture are female. I can help with the rest if you can get some pictures with clear breeding tubes.
 
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nikislash

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kayla.s said:
Of course! another option could be to move the filter and the heater to a large bucket of water if that's available to you. Then there would be more space. Just an idea for if the aggressive behavior gets worse.
Good idea. I'll keep watch and have a big plastic storage tote ready if I'm seeing too much aggression.

AquaticJ said:
Second and fourth picture are female. I can help with the rest if you can get some pictures with clear breeding tubes.
Thanks for the confirmation! That's what I was thinking too. I tried to get better pictures of the other two, got one decent, but the other just won't cooperate. I'm thinking that they're probably both male though because there isn't an obvious breeding tube like on the other two, just a tiny point - https://imgur.com/a/ZwFawuE

Hopefully I'll end up with 2 pairs
 

AquaticJ

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I'd agree with you! Tiny little pointed tube is easy to differentiate from the females once you see both in person.
 
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nikislash

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I wish I'd googled more pictures before I was at the store. I ended up getting two brighter and two duller fish, thinking the brighter ones would be the males. Now it looks like one of each sex in both bright and duller colouration.

Actually, I've noticed today that the two duller ones are always in the same place in the tank and seem to follow each other around. Maybe they're pairing up already! If so, I hope the brighter two eventually pair up as well. right now they want nothing to do with each other.
 
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