Looking at your pics, I would say that you have 2 males.
Witt wrote:Hey Matt,
It sounds as though you have seen first hand just out just how tenacious these little fellas can be. I have yet to find a 'compatible' pair of this species and it seems they will fight no matter what 2 are paired.
I have had a few pairs in which the females dominated the pair and terrorized the male. My usual approach to pairing the nasty species, especially Pictichromis, is through the use of a hanging basket.
Though Bi-directional sex change has been observed in this species, the trick seems to be keeping them alive long enough in a confined space for this change to occur. Physical interaction is quite important to stimulate sex change, but the basket technique works well, assuming the mesh is somewhat transparent.
So in the end, a quick way to keep the 'pair' going is to use the hole in the box method or just the let the female out to play every week.
She will get her butt kicked, but if we use what we know about sex change to our benefit we can manipulate what we need. This will work, eventually, for two males as well, at least in P. cyanotaenia.
Witt wrote:The basket or box method doesn't necessarily require that a size difference exist. As long as enough time is allowed for the female or the otherwise submissive fish to establish this nook as their territory and acknowledge this as a safe retreat it usually works quite well.
Coloration definitely accompanies sex change. You will see the 'males' turning murky and loosing color as the gonads differentiate.
Witt wrote:They definitely look healthy!
I would say your assumptions are correct, but a side shot of the 'female' would help a bit.
Remember sexual dimorphism in jawfish? The body cavity is sometimes a clue as to the sexual function of a fish. Males take on a somewhat triangular shape, while females resemble a jelly bean with a more rounded appearance from developing ovaries. This sometimes works in dottybacks, and tracking these changes over time helps solidify other observations.
Your fish are very healthy and fat so this might be difficult to see. Don't be alarmed if it takes a wile for this change to occur. You can of course speed it up with play time.
This is what is so fascinating about marine fishes and our knowledge that allows us to manipulate a pair. Can you imagine if this was a rare species worth $300 and the only 2 fish available in the world were males?
Iris wrote:Hello Matt, the Larvae 5 days from Januar2007
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