The Ram Cichlid, commonly known as the German Blue Ram, is a vibrant addition to a tranquil community tank. The German Blue Ram is a calm and laid-back member of the community, in contrast to many other cichlid species. Due to their exacting needs for habitat and water quality, these fish are not suggested for beginning or intermediate hobbyists.
Common Name: German Blue Ram, Ram Chiclid, German Blue
Scientific Name: Mikrogeophagus ramirezi
Adult Size: 2 to 3 inches
Life Expectancy: 2 to 3 years
|Tank Level||Mid, bottom-dweller|
|Minimum Tank Size||20 gallons|
|pH||5.0 to 7.0|
|Temperature||74 to 82F (23 to 28C)|
Origin and Distribution
The German Blue Ram, also known as the Ram Cichlid, is a South American native, like many other cichlid species. Both Venezuela and Colombia's Orinoco River basins have this species. For many years, it has been successfully bred in captivity, safeguarding natural populations.
Colors and Markings
The vibrant blue highlights on the German Blue Ram make it stand out. The body is mostly gold or silver in color, with black patterns over the head, on the cranial dorsal fin, and on the dorsal side of the body. The tips of the fins might be a little red or orange. This fish gets its name from bright spots of iridescent electric blue that cover the whole body.
The German Blue Ram is a rather calm fish, in contrast to many other cichlid species, making it an unsuitable choice for many cichlid combo tanks. The German Blue Ram may be housed alongside many other community aquarium fish species provided their water quality conditions match.
The Blood Parrot Cichlid and are two other possible cichlid mates for the German Blue Ram. The German Blue Ram should not be maintained alongside any of the several other aggressive cichlid species.
German Blue Ram Habitat and Care
Due to its demanding habitat needs and water quality requirements, the German Blue Ram is only advised for expert hobbyists. Any fish system has to maintain appropriate water quality, but keeping your German Blue Ram alive and healthy is especially crucial. Maintain a regular maintenance plan and check the quality of your water frequently.
In addition to exceptional water quality, this species likes to have plants to swim around, caves to hide in, and if you plan on breeding, flat stones for females to lay their eggs.
If there are too many plants, your fish won't be able to swim freely, and if there aren't enough caverns, cave-loving species may compete unnecessarily. To establish a space where your fish has room to swim and safely hide requires a fine balance.
German Blue Ram Diet and Feeding
The best option for German Blue Ram is a because they are omnivores and not very fussy eaters. While occasionally acceptable, supplements with frozen, fresh, or dried meals should not account for more than 5 to 10% of the whole diet. These may be goodies for both herbivores and carnivores.
Being easygoing fish, there are no specific feeding requirements for the German Blue Ram. As with all community tanks, a broadcast feeding is recommended so all fish get a fair share.
It is very difficult to differentiate between male and female rams. The males tend to be larger and more colorful, but external variations are not a consistent method of sex differentiation.
If you closely examine the black markings on the side of your German Blue Ram, you may see that some males lack any blue coloring while the females do. The dorsal fins of the males frequently elongate. These sex determination procedures are not, however, certain.
Breeding the German Blue Ram
All fish breeding attempts should take place in a separate breeding tank, it is strongly advised. This will safeguard the freshly born fry while allowing for small fluctuations in water quality and temperature.
The German Blue Ram loves to reproduce in water that is soft, slightly acidic (5.5-6.5), and gradually raises the temperature to the maximum range (82F or 28C). Prior to transferring your fish to their new environment, make sure they are well-fed because breeding has significant metabolic demands.
Once you have a male and female German Blue Ram pair, they will usually attend school together. The female will need a flat rock to lay her eggs on, and the male will follow after to fertilize them. The freshly hatched fry and eggs will be watched upon by the parents alternately.
More Pet Fish Species
If you are interested in the German Blue Ram, here are some other interesting cichlid species: