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Bolivian Ram Not Getting Enough Food

Discussion in 'New World Cichlids' started by Karnea, Jul 20, 2019.

  1. Karnea

    Karnea New Member

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    I added a Bolivian Ram to my 30 gallon tank around a week ago and I'm concerned that he isn't getting enough food. I love my guppies (6) to death, but they are just absolute pigs and would eat 24/7 if they could. When they finish with the pellets on top they quickly go down and pick the sinkers off the bottom before my Ram can even get anything cause he's such a slow eater. Even if I try to feed them flakes on top (cause they don't sink) to distract them and drop pellets on the other side of the tank where the ram is, they quickly figure it out and take them all. Just looking for any suggestions or solutions. Thanks!
     
  2. Moony42

    Moony42 Fish Fanatic
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    Hi and welcome to TFF!!
    It is not a good idea to mix slow eating fish such as the bolivian ram with fast eating livebearers such as guppies. I suggest you move the bolivian ram to another tank and add another bolivian ram with him.

    Good luck!!
     
  3. essjay

    essjay Moderator
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    Adding another Bolivian ram isn't a good idea. Two males would fight; two females might be OK; a male and a female won't necessarily get on. These fish must choose their own mates or one will likely kill the other. Since Bolivian rams are very hard to tell apart, getting another would mean you won't know which sexes you have until it's too late.

    As for the initial question, you have already tried what I would have suggested.
    Are there any other fish in the tank besides the guppies and Bolivian ram?
     
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  4. seangee

    seangee Member

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    Before we go too much further rams are softwater fish while guppies are hardwater - so ideally they would not be in the same tank.

    Have you tried catfish or cichlid pellets and possibly algae wafers. These are fairly hard and take some time to soften in the water. This would suit the ram and allow it to sift the substrate. This works well in my tank where the greedy little tetras go mad for the pellets and often carry them around, but they are too hard or big for them to be eaten. By the time they do start dissolving the tetras have got bored and the corydoras can feed at their leisure.
     
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  5. PheonixKingZ

    PheonixKingZ Fish Herder
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    Hello, and welcome to the forum! :hi:

    Have you tried to kind of “fend off” the guppies when the BR is trying to eat? :)

    (Please consider entering the July POTM contest, by clicking the banner at the top of your screen, Thanks!) :) :thanks:
     
  6. Moony42

    Moony42 Fish Fanatic
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    I concur 100%. It is a horrible idea to introduce algae flakes etc into a guppy tank. The guppy population is more, hence they will tear the food apart.
     
  7. PheonixKingZ

    PheonixKingZ Fish Herder
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    Guppies are pigs in my opinion. :lol:

    I do concur with @seangee on the Softwater, and hard water issue. Guppies require Harder water than rams do. :)
     
  8. Byron

    Byron Member

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    I agree with some of the above. Seangee's point on the substrate-feeding fish sinking foods is right on the mark. Dwarf cichlids like the Ram species feed from the substrate, and as slow feeding fish, the sinking foods intended for cories and loaches are the best. Omega One's Shrimp Pellets, Nutrafin earthworm Max Tablets, and Omega One's Veggie Rounds were all favourites of my Bolivian Ram who lived into his ninth year on this diet. Frozen bloodworms once a week as a treat.

    The Veggie Rounds in particular take a few hours to fully break down; even with a group of 50 cories and the Bolivian Ram, they would all be picking on these 2-3 hours later.

    Bolivian Rams tend to consider the tank "their space" and mine was very adept at letting the upper fish know it; they never messed with his food. The cories did try, and got shoved aside, but being thick-skinned bumbling fish they didn't seem to care.
     

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