The German Blue Ram, also known as the Ram Cichlid, is an electric addition to a calm community fish. Unlike several different species of cichlid, the German Blue Ram is a peaceful and easygoing community member.
German Blue Ram fish has additional names such as Butterfly Cichlids & Electric Blue Ram that refer to their stunning colors. These fish are not suggested for beginner or intermediate hobbyists due to their strict water quality conditions and habitat desires.
German blue rams are small colorful cichlids suited to a peaceful community fishbowl. This fish is excellent if you resemble supplement some bright colors to your container.
They might not be the most obvious fish to start with as they require quite strict water conditions; however, they are very captivating and will impress your heart in no time. From breeding to feeding, this is a truly worthwhile fish.
Origin and Description
Like several different cichlid species, the German Blue Ram or Ram Cichlid is native to South America. The German Blue Ram is native to tropical water bodies in Venezuela and Columbia. They are discovered around the Orinoco River Basin, where they exist in flooded savannas filled with rivers, lagoons, and marshes.
Ram cichlid is a small, colorful cichlid with an oval-shaped body and high fins. Male butterfly cichlid has more spiny form dorsal, and the male is larger than female. Although in nature, body length stretches about 7 cm.
This cichlid breathes for around 4 years, which isn’t much, but it’s a rather long time for the fish of such a small size. It has been developed favorably in captivity for several years, protecting wild populations.
This coloration is very bright and attractive. It has red eyes, a yellow head, a blue and violet iridescent body with a black spot, and bright fins. It recognizing the presence of various colors – gold, electric blue, albino etc., it must be declared that it’s very much worth attending.
These regions are also filled with thick vegetation that presents lots of shade to protect themselves from predators. Their natural habitat has a very low pH, composing it extremely challenging for most different fish species to live. So they are very used to acidic waters and can live much easier than different species in an identical environment.
German Blue Ram Fish facts
- Common Name: German Blue Ram, Ram Chiclid, German Blue
- Scientific Name: Mikrogeophagus ramirezi
- Adult Size: 2 to 3 inches
- Life Expectancy: 2 to 4 years
- Family: Cichlidae
- Origin: South America
- Social: Peaceful
- Tank Level: Mid, bottom-dweller
- Minimum Tank Size: 20 gallons
- Diet: Omnivore
- Breeding: Egg layer
- Care: Advanced
- pH: 5.0 to 7.0
- Hardness: 10 dgH
- Temperature: 74 to 82F (23 to 28C)
The German Blue Ram is a very colorful fish, and it has a bright yellowish, almost green body and head, with the rest of the body being blue/white. Black curved lines run along its body, with a black dot roughly in the middle of the body.
Commonly, wild-caught specimens have more visible lines than captive-bred fish. The whole body is highlighted by vibrant spots of contemplative electric blue, delivering this fish its name.
The Ram Chiclids have a very thin body and a big mouth with a flat bottom. They also have two especially long filaments on their dorsal fin that stretch out from the back of their head. Their eyes are red, and their spines are yellow or red with blue lines, which are almost transparent.
The front dorsal fin is generally black. Females have a pink-orange belly and are somewhat smaller. Their body is oval-shaped with sharptails and fins.
Genitive dimorphism is apparent both in the colors but also in the shape of the fins. Males have more sharp dorsal fins than females. If the colors are not enough to warn off predators, Cichlids also have spiny rays along their spines to restrict them from being eaten by larger fish. These spiny patches can get stuck in the enemy’s throat.
Habitat and Tank Conditions
The natural habitat of M. ramirezi is warm (25.5-29.5 °C, 78-85 °F), acidic (pH 5.2-6.7) water courses in the Llanos savannas of Venezuela and Colombia. The water is commonly slow-flowing, includes few dissolved minerals, and ranges in color from clear to darkly stain with tannins.
The species is typically observed where cover in aquatic or submersed vegetation is available.
The native populations of Ram Cichlids are from South America, and they inhabit the extended waterways of the Amazon River, particularly the Orinoco River Basin in Venezuela and Colombia. These Rams live in shallow pools and streams with sandy beds and overflowing vegetation.
These bodies of water are usually filled with plants and different vegetation, where a small ram would have plenty of hiding places. It is also common to discover these fish in regions with low flow, little dissolved nutrients, and stained water from natural tannins.
The German Blue Ram fish is susceptible to water parameters; therefore, it is crucial to provide them with the best environment possible. Firstly, do not introduce this fish to an aquarium that has not been cycled with an outstanding filtration system, and oxygen and nitrates levels should always be observed.
The water parameters to best mimic the natural environment are as follows:
- Temperature: 78-85°F
- pH range: 6.0-7.5
- Water hardness: 6-14 dGH
- Moderate to subdued lighting
- Slow to moderate water current
A mix of gravel and sand can be utilized as a substrate. You can attach some large rocks for decoration. German Blue Rams will enjoy a heavily planted tank with many hiding places; you can use stones or driftwood for this. When arranging the plants, ensure you leave some space for free swimming.
German Blue Rams need pristine water quality, so it’s most satisfying to place them in a larger tank. The suggest retaining a single fish, maybe even a pair, in, at most trivial, a 20 gallon (75 liters) tank, which will provide them an abundance of space to swim and traverse.
Rams do most useful in a 20 gallon long since they are bottom-dwelling fish and a long gives them more floor space (related to a larger footprint in the aquarium hobby).
However, Ram Cichlids require pristine air quality, and they increase considerably when there is sufficient water to swim over one part of the aquarium to another. In addition, they do great in 20-gallon tank size as they receive adequate floor space in 20-gallon tanks.
If you deposit more than one female, you require a 30-gallon tank size. However, if you hold more than one male, you require a 40-gallon tank size. This is because the males are large, and if you retain them in a big tank, they would be preserved to prevent the scope of fighting.
German blue rams are the favorites of any community tank. Despite their fierce appearance and cichlid character, they are peaceful critters identified to group with other less aggressive fish. The German Blue Ram can be retained with various other compatible community aquarium fish species if their water quality parameters match.
Many small fish popular in community tank environments can ordinarily be kept with German blue rams. Because this cichlid species requires comparatively soft and acidic water parameters, try to discover tankmates that appreciate related situations.
Tetras, such as neon and black neon tetras, would make a surpassing alternative for the middle water column; various peaceful catfish species, like Corydoras and Ancistrus, would add life to lower regions.
Ensure that each fish has its personality; be adapted to separate fish if one determines to be too aggressive for your container! It’s not suggested to hold German blue rams with shrimp since most shrimp species obtain a tempting snack!
Additionally, your small rams will not feel comfortable when coupled with more assertive species, like different larger cichlids.
German blue rams are omnivores and relish a broad range of food in their nutrition. They will ordinarily nibble on anything from wafers to live foods, such as bloodworms. The shrimp above really obtain a fine German blue ram food as well: if you discover yourself with an exploding colony of Neocaridina davidi, for example, your rams will gladly take some off your hands.
Although, It’s not unusual for these fish to refuse prepared foods for the first few weeks of being included in a new tank.
Regard having a small brine shrimp hatchery set up before you go out to purchase your new rams so that you have an alternative food selection if they refuse the first; this will also assist in the future to present your fish with a wide variety in diet!
Since German blue rams are hesitant and shy eaters, it’s highly suggested to be calm and wait to serve them individually. So, they will not receive enough food if housed in a community vessel.
Behavior & Temperament
German blue rams are recognized for staying moderately peaceful in the aquarium environment. Just try to contribute adequate hiding places and designated places for privacy in the form of existing plants and coconut hollows. This way, you’ll seldom see your rams bothering other fish in the tank.
One of the fabulous things about the German Blue Rams is their peaceful nature. These fish are very mellow and require to do their thing. This makes them excellent for community tanks since there’s a long list of potential tank mates you can keep them with.
You’ll frequently see these fish hiding out among the plants or digging through the substrate. They are an attractive mix of shy and exploratory! You’ll ordinarily see them in the bottom half of the aquarium, but it’s not out of the question for them to visit the top and check things out. This addresses them quite a fun fish to watch.
German blue ram fish care
This fish is susceptible to water parameters (notably nitrates levels), so placing it in a new aquarium is not wise. It requires constant water differences, at least once a week; try to replace 10%-20% of the tank water once a week. If you have a heavily stocked vessel, you will require replacing more water.
Temperature is a big determinant for these bacteria, and they cannot survive in a climate hotter than 98°F. In addition to the various common conditions associated with poor water management and oxygenation, such as Ich disease, German Blue Rams are particularly susceptible to fish tuberculosis (TB). This can also be passed onto humans.
Typical indications incorporate your fish becoming thinner, ulcers nearby the head or body of the fish, grey-white nodules, dropsy and pop eyes. Ensure to never touch the water directly without protection if this is the case. This can be managed with specific antibiotics that a vet must usually prescribe. The whole situation will require sterilising and replacing plants and substrates.
It is extremely recommended that all attempts at fish breeding occur in a separate breeding tank. This will provide slight water quality and temperature fluctuations while protecting the newly hatched fry. They’ll begin to become more destructive once they produce and will attack other tank mates that appear near their nursery.
The German Blue Ram prefers to breed in somewhat acidic (5.5-6.5), soft water, and slowly increase the temperature to the top range (82F or 28C). Breeding has high metabolic necessities, so ensure your fish are well-served before moving them into their new surroundings.
Once you have an organized male-female pair of German Blue Rams, they will tend to school together. They will need a flat rock on which the female will lay her eggs, and then the male will catch behind to fertilize them. The parents will catch turns guarding the eggs and newly hatched fry.
Is The German Blue Ram Right For Your Aquarium?
The German Blue Ram is a very colorful and peaceful fish, excellent for well-settled community aquariums. It is a peaceful Cichlid that will enjoy the company of different small and peaceful fish.
This species is very sensitive to water requirements, so ensure you perform periodic water changes and have a good filtration system. A healthy and well-balanced diet and suitable water requirements will retain this fish healthy.
We suggest you obtain a strict maintenance schedule for the tank and hold the tank clean as satisfying as possible. These little fish require maintenance and care, but I believe they are deserving of it! The brilliant color will definitely deliver them a piece of pearl in the fish tank.