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Old 05-11-2012, 01:38 AM   #1 
Bombalurina
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What to do? Possible gender-bender

Hi guys

Some of you will know that my beautiful Psyche very sadly died last week. Since my sorority numbers had shrunk down to 4 and there was a bit of nipping (has since calmed, but hey, it was a good excuse whilst it lasted) I went to get 3 more girls to balance things out.

These girls are just over an inch long (my big girls range from 1.5 to a bit over 2 inches, and fat with it) and are extremely cute. I chose:
- a darling little Cambodian (Demeter). I don't normally like cams but she is just too cute. She has the most perfect, cute face, a gorgeous pale pink body and watermelon fins (soft red and green). She has the prettiest little blue eyes.
- a little MG girl who was hiding in a shell in the shop. She looked pretty unwell. Her fins are really torn up and she has a spinal deformity. However, in my QT tank she has gained a lot of confidence and is swimming and eating well. Her name is Cassandra and she gets on well with Demeter. She has some lovely blue irridesence starting to show on her body. She has unusually long ventrals, but I'm fairly confident about her gender regardless.

Now for my problem child. Hippolyta is a delicious deep blue and red. However, I'm beginning to doubt that she is in fact female. Here's why:
- her ventrals, although not yet long, are much thicker than my other girls'.
- she blows some pretty awesome bubblenests
- her fins, particularly her anal fin, are longer and pointier than my femmes, and very well-shaped. It looks like this guy's tail: http://phoenix-cry.deviantart.com/ar...etta-145623861, with that slight point.
- she is extremely aggressive. In the shop, she had jumped the divider into a blue ram tank, so I couldn't see this, but in my tank she has been taking her moods out on Dem and Cass.

I know that none of these factors alone are decisive. I have not seen an ovipostor. From what I've seen of her beard, she looks a bit manly, but since her head is black, seeing it when she flares is difficult. She also only flares at the other women, not at her own reflection.
I'm really sorry that I can't get a picture - first, she is isolated in a breeder box in the QT tank, so getting a good angle is hard; secondly, I'd have to borrow my sister's camera and wait on her pleasure to upload the photo. If anyone wants to hazard a guess at her gender regardless, feel free, but I won't hold you to it.

Now, here are my problems.

1) Dem is the only one I am happy to release into the big tank on Monday. She's calm, she's healthy and I'm confident of her ability to fit into the sorority. However, I'm really quite nervous about it. She's such a different colour to my other, dark-bodied girls - will she be harassed because of it?

2) I'm beginning to worry about Cassie's ability to blend in with my sorority. She is swimming well in the hexy QT tank, but it's ony a foot from top to bottom, if that. My sorority tank is a massive 18 inches from top to bottom and I'm not sure with her ragged fins and broken spine that she can make it. I'm going to keep her in QT til her fins are at least nearly healed regardless, but do you think that spinal thing will cause problems? Is there anything I can do about it? Should I buy her a betta log?

3) What on earth do I do with Hippo? My mother has made it quite clear she will not allow me to keep a third tank running for longer than I need to QT the girls/fix up Cassie, so if she is a male, I can't keep her. :( However, I feel super guilty leaving her in that little breeder box - it doesn't have all the room I'd like, as she clearly enjoys swimming.

I know not all of these questions have answers, but I'd love opinions. I will try and get pictures!
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Old 05-11-2012, 06:51 AM   #2 
Olympia
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Hmm, well if I'm not correct wouldn't she enjoy looking at the girls if she was a boy? Like displaying for them? If anything the other girls would be attacking the boy.
She could just be a bully.
My girl's anal fin is longer than that PK's and she's got thick ventrals, yet she's definitely a she. I can post a photo of her later if you want to compare.
Does the shop ever sell PKs? If there are plakats in other tanks it's possible, but if you've never seen one it's more likely to be a female..
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Old 05-11-2012, 06:59 AM   #3 
BeckyFish97
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I'm not sure...if I had to hazard a guess I would say a long finned female?Can you post pics of your other girls so we could compare length?I found with my piney, his fins were double the size of the other females, maybe seeing the other females might give us an idea how much bigger her fins are?
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Old 05-11-2012, 08:07 AM   #4 
Bombalurina
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I don't have any pictures of the new girls. :( I'll try and find a picture of my fully-grown ladies, though.

Olympia, a picture would be great. :) We don't really get plakats here (I've seen one plakat in one shop, once), but I was thinking that maybe s/he was a juvie male whose fins just haven't grown out yet.

When another female swims by, she flares like mad and tries to get at them...don't know if that's because she wants to mate with them or murder them, though. :p
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Old 05-11-2012, 11:04 AM   #5 
Pucky21811
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-Winnipeg flares at other fishes AND her reflection, so it could go either way there.

-Zamboni has a spinal deformity. (Bad net accident months ago) He is only in a 2 gal Kritter Keeper and he has actually improved. I would definitely suggest "lounge," objects (he is, endearingly, my "lounge," fish because of the way he sits with his body on the ground and his "waist," up facing upwards) I have a betta log and a leaf hammock, and he even uses things that aren't lounges, like my moss ball, his clay pot, the suction cup that holds the heater and the suction cup that holds the thermometer. He does just fine, but then again, he is by himself.

He hobbles and doesn't tread water for very long. I am not sure if your girl would do well in a sorority; maybe she'd get bullied and not be able to escape in time? I'm not sure, it could be a different level of injury compared to my boy.

I hope any of that helped; Good luck on everyone else!
-Pucky
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