Originally Posted by bettalover2033
That looks like it could still have up to 25 eggs in the nest. They are just getting the hang of breeding.
REMEMBER: Make sure you are not stressing the fish by putting them to spawn in just a couple of eggs. This second time (current spawn) you mentioned that there were just a few of eggs for a lot of the times they embraced, this could be because she is stressed or that she hasnt had a chance to develope more eggs even though females have eggs all the time. From the pictures It looks like she contributed a whole lot with many eggs even though they were not a bunch each time.
The solution would be to give her a whole week of reconditioning or more because of how many eggs she has managed to give. Since there were many eggs that she released, give her that week or more to develop more eggs and then introduce them again.
Good luck. Just take it slow and you should have fry in no time if you don't get it this time around.
The most of the embraces resulted in 2-3 eggs, toward the end, when Smudge was having an easier time embracing (and not stunning hisself) I did count 20 eggs in one of the last few embraces
If I re-spawn them, I will probably give them 2-3 weeks of conditioning again
They both did a good job through the process, Smudge got jumpy toward the end though, I have been counting 22 eggs in the nest currently, but Smudge stacked a lot of them so I can't be 100% sure, for a first spawn, if any of these hatch I will consider it a success, raise these fry and give mom and dad a break
Merle has been doing really well, she has not been enjoying QT and has been vigorisly trying to get out of the QT container... she has a small tear in her anal fin and a missing scale, but it looks like Smudge had the brunt of the damage (torn fins, no missing scales) he is currently in QT sulking, he has built a small bubble nest and is looking over that...