Will a Bolivian Ram starve itself to death before it eats food floating in front of it?

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Murf.

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I see this one has an inch+ long mostly clear, a little milky, strand coming out of the poop chute. Don't know if that means evidence of eating or a bad sign.
 

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Byron

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I see this one has an inch+ long mostly clear, a little milky, strand coming out of the poop chute. Don't know if that means evidence of eating or a bad sign.

I will leave that for someone like @Colin_T as I never guess treatments over such issues.
 

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My German Ram just dont want to eat in a crowd ... but when all the feeding frenzy is done it will pick up the food at the bottom of the tank peacefully .
And yeah dont never seen snatching foods here and there for sure.

I guess its just the Ram thingy ....

If you want snatching foods frenzy then go for Tiger Barb ... they are the first to be in line when the first pellet / flakes touch the tank surface.
 
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My German Ram just dont want to eat in a crowd ... but when all the feeding frenzy is done it will pick up the food at the bottom of the tank peacefully .
And yeah dont never seen snatching foods here and there for sure.

I guess its just the Ram thingy ....

If you want snatching foods frenzy then go for Tiger Barb ... they are the first to be in line when the first pellet / flakes touch the tank surface.
Well I don't think any fish within a foot could miss the stink the shrimp pellets put off. The 3 little 1/2 inch pygmy corys sure like them. Maybe I will drop the pellets in at night. You think the rams will eat them in the dark or are rams inactive at night?
Thanks
 

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Can we get a picture of the entire tank?

What is the ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH and GH of the tank water?

What is the pH and GH of the shop's water (where you got the fish from)?
What was the shop feeding them?
How long had the fish been at the shop for before you got them?

How often do you do water changes and how much do you change?
Do you gravel clean the substrate when you do a water change?
Do you dechlorinate the new water before adding it to the tank?

How often and how do you clean the filter?

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Stringy white poop can be from intestinal worms, internal bacterial infections, or an internal protozoan infection.

It's unlikely to be bacterial because that usually causes the fish to bloat up overnight and die within 24-48 hours of bloating.

It's possible the fish have intestinal worms.

It could have an internal protozoan infection, which causes fish to stop eating or reduce the amount of food they eat, and die over a week or so. If you have had the fish for a couple of weeks (and they should spend at least 2 weeks in quarantine), then it's unlikely to be an internal protozoan infection.

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Quarantine tanks should have a thin layer of substrate to reduce stress and stop the fish being able to see their reflection on the bottom. The tank should also have a picture or something on the back of the tank to make the fish feel more secure. And there should be caves or plants (real or artificial) to provide hiding places and make the fish feel more secure.

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Try feeding live or frozen food and see if they eat that. A lot of people that breed cichlids (in particular rams), use frozen and live foods and the fish usually ignore dry foods. Rams also don't eat much if any plant matter. They like insect larvae, worms, small fish and shrimp.

I would try frozen (but defrosted) brineshrimp, daphnia, bloodworms, marine mix (prawn, fish & squid), and raw or cooked prawn/ shrimp. If you have live shrimp in the tank, use cooked prawn.

If the fish don't eat live or frozen foods, and the pH and GH are correct for the species, they might have an internal protozoan infection. However, I would try different food and see what happens. Then if you want to treat them for anything, treat them for intestinal worms.

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Depending on tank size, the dwarf gourami might be ok if you have lots of floating plants. Water Sprite (Ceratopteris thallictroides/ cornuta) is a great plant for dwarf gouramis and the plant can float on the surface or be planted in the substrate. It grows rapidly so you only need a couple of plants and before long there should be plenty of hiding spaces to make the gourami feel happy. If the gourami continues to attack fish after that, then get rid of it.
 

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Ram's hate change and can sulk. They are not a fish to take lightly, they are finicky and can be difficult to acclimatize into a new tank. Buy them with a caution notice over their heads.
 
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Can we get a picture of the entire tank?

What is the ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH and GH of the tank water?

What is the pH and GH of the shop's water (where you got the fish from)?
What was the shop feeding them?
How long had the fish been at the shop for before you got them?

How often do you do water changes and how much do you change?
Do you gravel clean the substrate when you do a water change?
Do you dechlorinate the new water before adding it to the tank?

How often and how do you clean the filter?

--------------------
Stringy white poop can be from intestinal worms, internal bacterial infections, or an internal protozoan infection.

It's unlikely to be bacterial because that usually causes the fish to bloat up overnight and die within 24-48 hours of bloating.

It's possible the fish have intestinal worms.

It could have an internal protozoan infection, which causes fish to stop eating or reduce the amount of food they eat, and die over a week or so. If you have had the fish for a couple of weeks (and they should spend at least 2 weeks in quarantine), then it's unlikely to be an internal protozoan infection.

--------------------
Quarantine tanks should have a thin layer of substrate to reduce stress and stop the fish being able to see their reflection on the bottom. The tank should also have a picture or something on the back of the tank to make the fish feel more secure. And there should be caves or plants (real or artificial) to provide hiding places and make the fish feel more secure.

--------------------
Try feeding live or frozen food and see if they eat that. A lot of people that breed cichlids (in particular rams), use frozen and live foods and the fish usually ignore dry foods. Rams also don't eat much if any plant matter. They like insect larvae, worms, small fish and shrimp.

I would try frozen (but defrosted) brineshrimp, daphnia, bloodworms, marine mix (prawn, fish & squid), and raw or cooked prawn/ shrimp. If you have live shrimp in the tank, use cooked prawn.

If the fish don't eat live or frozen foods, and the pH and GH are correct for the species, they might have an internal protozoan infection. However, I would try different food and see what happens. Then if you want to treat them for anything, treat them for intestinal worms.

--------------------
Depending on tank size, the dwarf gourami might be ok if you have lots of floating plants. Water Sprite (Ceratopteris thallictroides/ cornuta) is a great plant for dwarf gouramis and the plant can float on the surface or be planted in the substrate. It grows rapidly so you only need a couple of plants and before long there should be plenty of hiding spaces to make the gourami feel happy. If the gourami continues to attack fish after that, then get rid of it.
See attached pic of water test. (I do the results manually comparing, not by camera. Also, the PH is not accurate - LFS liquid test says 7.4) I have a well and use water from softener.
No idea on LFS questions except time at store. LFS ordered at my request. I picked up the first one 24hrs after they got them. It was a Friday night when I got the first one, then decided I wanted another and picked it up the following Sunday afternoon.
I change water every 2 weeks, 4 gals (29gal tank). I siphon gravel vac. I draw water for next change after I do change. So it sets for 2 weeks in bucket. I condition with Tetra Aquasafe plus at draw time. I cleaned the filter the week I added fish (before fish) and changed water right before I added fish.
My QT tank has no back or substrate (didn't know about that), but I have fake plant and large decoration with tunnel fish can hide in. 1 fish in QT 9 days and other 7 days. I thought I had better get them in main tank so maybe they would eat.
I got the rams because everything I read online said they go well in community tank, are hardy, easier than Germans. Nothing I saw said they had to have the ultimate perfect aquarium environment. All the rest of the fish are doing fine.
Thanks for the info.
I had to include the picture of the corys because it looked like they were posing for the pic.
 

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Byron

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A couple observations from the data/info in post #22 above.

Nitrate, is this actually 20 ppm? If so, you should make an effort to reduce that, assuming it is occurring from within the aquarium and not already in the source (tap) water. Check the tap on its own to make sure. Cichlids are not the "tough" fish many assume from their nature/behaviours. They are sensitive to water quality and parameters, and it is now believed by the cichlid folks that nitrate at 20 ppm is causing trouble for these fish (and others too, for that matter). There are things you can do to keep nitrates as low as possible, ideally zero, but in the 0-5 ppm range is OK, up to 10 ppm tolerable if that is the best you can do.

Increase the volume and frequency of water changes. Once a week should be basic for any aquarium with fish, regardless of any test results. And change 50-60% of the tank's volume at the once weekly W/C.

Keep the filter well rinsed; the brown gunk is organic matter, a source of nitrates. Vacuum into the open areas of the substrate. Floating plants help, as they are fast growers and thus take up an incredible amount of ammonia/ammonium, which means less nitrite to nitrate down the line. Do not overfeed.

You have very soft water, so stay with species preferring this (cories, rams, tetras, etc.).
 
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I did my Saturday feeding of the Omega One freeze dried brine shrimp, overfed actually.
They even came to the front separately like "where's my food", but ate nothing that I saw.
 
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I got some frozen blood worms today. Took some tank water in a glass and put blood worms in it. Sucked them up into turkey baster and released them in front of rams. They ate them!
I picked up a sprig of wisteria and floated in tank.
I also talked to guy at LFS were I got rams (and they still had at least 2). I asked what he was feeding them. He said cichlid floating granules. He said they come right to the top and eat them with these guys. He pointed to a couple small top feeding fish - probably an inch long. I didn't even notice what kind of fish they were.

So with all the top feeders in my tank, maybe mine are too shy right now to go to top to eat. That still doesn't make sense why mine don't eat the sinking granules right in front of their faces.

So I'm thinking maybe just feed them the blood worms once a week to give them something to keep them going while I try to get them used to eating granules.
What do you think?
 

Byron

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I got some frozen blood worms today. Took some tank water in a glass and put blood worms in it. Sucked them up into turkey baster and released them in front of rams. They ate them!
I picked up a sprig of wisteria and floated in tank.
I also talked to guy at LFS were I got rams (and they still had at least 2). I asked what he was feeding them. He said cichlid floating granules. He said they come right to the top and eat them with these guys. He pointed to a couple small top feeding fish - probably an inch long. I didn't even notice what kind of fish they were.

So with all the top feeders in my tank, maybe mine are too shy right now to go to top to eat. That still doesn't make sense why mine don't eat the sinking granules right in front of their faces.

So I'm thinking maybe just feed them the blood worms once a week to give them something to keep them going while I try to get them used to eating granules.
What do you think?

Yes, once a week max for bloodworms is OK, but try to wean the fish off these. Sometimes fish will begin eating bloodworms and never anything else. Keeping them hungry (minimal feeding once a week, no more, with bloodworms) should avoid this happening. Bloodworms are not the best food, but OK sporadically.

It is still likely that your fish were stressed by the move to your tank, whereas the store fish have been in that tank all along. Rams are very sensitive fish.
 
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Thanks for the bloodworm advice. I didn't know fish would develop a pickyness for them. Fortunately I bought the smallest / cheapest quantity I could buy. If I can get them eating dry food, I will use it up maybe once every other week as a treat.
I see one of the rams is swimming in front of tank today and swam up to the top. I've not seen them swim to top before. So maybe they will be braver at tonights feeding ( I only feed once a day), or sometime this week.
Thanks
 
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