Saturday, November 14, 2009
Electric Blue Ram
Microgeophagus ramirezi var Electric Blue, Electric Blue Ram. A quick picture from the aquarium. These Electric Blue Rams do quite well in the acidic water in my aquarium. It turns out that the logs with the Java fern on them make the water very acidic. That means that South American fish, from the slow moving, acidic Amazon waters, do quite well. It also means that African cichlids from the great rift lakes (Mozambique, Tanganyika, Victoria) find the water pretty much unbearable.
I had a breeding pair of Golden Rams when I was a kid. Cichlids are fun to watch as they guard and tend to the nest and then guard the babies. I have three of the Electric Blues so we'll see if any of them pair up.
Ironically, they've changed the genera on dwarf rams since I was a kid. They used to be called Apistogramma ramirezi. While these little guys were split off of Apistogramma, there are apparantly still over 50 species of dwarf cichlids in Apistogramma.
Okay, I did a little looking around and here's what I found out. Microgeophagus Axelrod, 1971 is the name accepted by most taxonomists. Thus, Dr. Axelrod, of TFH fame, appears to be the guilty party (and apparently the one that felt that these little cuties bear semblance to their larger Geophagus cousins). Kullander, on the other hand, contends that the name Mikrogeophagus (with a "k") Meulengracht-Madsen, 1968 is the oldest valid name and should be used for the genus. Either way, they are beautiful, largely peaceful fish with a lot of character.
Oh, and if you're wondering, the little fishes looking on in the background are glass tetras.