Anyone tried taking fish to MA? (Endler Boom)

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Just wondered if anyone has tried to take fish to Maidenhead Aquatics and what their policy was?

What seemed to be a good idea at the time as a project I bought two pairs of Endlers. I lost one of the females but now I have a population boom on my hands which is getting a bit ridiculous. I did appreciate they would have young quite a lot when I bought them but the problem is the young seem all to be females, my initial plan was to keep giving them away until I just had a tank of males for something to look at, from what I understand soft water produces a higher female to male ratio and my water is very soft. The problem I have is that although some are newly born pretty much so far I haven't found any new males!

Firstly I need to find a home for the sexually mature female, currently she's kicking out massive batches nearly every month to the day sometimes 12 to 16 at a time. Problem is nobody seems to want any, my local LFS as a policy of not taking in fish at all which I think is ridiculous. I've put them free to good homes on facebook groups but nothing, especially with them being the duller females. I was toying with the idea of maybe putting a male Betta in there in the hope it will eat any new fry but I also have RCS in the tank.

I don't want to go down the route of culling but I'm at the point I don't think I'll have a choice which goes against every principle I have in fish keeping.

Any ideas?
 
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I don't want anything for them mate. Lesson learnt here, I'll see if I can get through and ask them this week, hopefully they will. The first batch are maybe 15mm long and are all clearly females, second batch can't see any colour in any of them but are only 1 month old, not sure when they develop colours and just came in today to find another batch. It is only a 50 ltr tank and I was only hoping to get maybe 6 or 8 males to go with my RCS and Ottos but right now the tank is wall to wall endler fry. I would guess there's about 30 to 40 in there :eek:
 

Tim Harrison

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Haha, been there and worn the T shirt. Like you said buying females as well always seems like a good idea at the time, but you soon live to regret it...:rolleyes:
I'm lucky my LFS will usually give me a credit note.
 

Siege

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I had the same experience as Tim. My local one will take them but won’t give even tuppence in credit.

I understand every MA runs differently though so worth asking you one.
 
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Like you said buying females as well always seems like a good idea at the time

I think I'll file this one under "seemed like a good idea at the time! My LFS has some kind of Bio policy in case I infect their stock, TBH my fish are in much better condition than the ones in there. I'm limited round these here parts for LFS, ironically MA shut the other two down even though in the main they tend to be more expensive. They're my last hope though. Hopefully if I can re-home the mature female that should slow things down for now, not sure how long it takes for them to become mature but with the two males in there and the amount of females things could go exponential on me. I guess If MA will take fish I could also ditch the males which will grind the whole thing to a halt but seems a shame as the plan was to selectively breed some nice males, just didn't they the fish would be so hard to re-home.

If MA in the nearest town will take them I don't mind cracking on with the project, will just need a second small tank just to separate a couple of females into and only keep together when I lose fish through natural wastage. Don't fancy another tank though right now.
 

MirandaB

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I was in my local MA recently and overheard them saying they're not taking in livebearers there but obviously different stores will have different policies.
 
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A friend has a similar explosion with guppies, she put them for sale on ebay, sold 70 in a weekend. If your the cheapest on ebay there going to sell. She insisted on collection only.
 

alto

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Just realize that small grey fish tend to go as “feeder fish”
 

PARAGUAY

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It was a while ago but not MA but Pets at Home my grandaughters tank was getting a little overrun by baby Platys ang Guppies so we asked P@H would they take some,the thoughtful girl on the fish section said because they were smaller than many of the larger livebearers on sale she would put them in a quieter tank. Over the next couple of weeks or so going there for a vet check for the dog and generally browsing the store we noticed one of the baby guppies had developed lovely colours ,grandma and grandaughter decided to purchase it back(they took them for free) It felt a bit funny as the staff member,quite rightly discussed whether our tank was suitable,how long it was set up etc
 
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You know what, I've just realised I meant Pets at Home not MA. MA is a good trek for me. I think I've managed to re-home some from a friend of mine with medium sized fish that will eat fry. Hopefully he can take the ones they won't eat and fry won't be an issue.

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How long does it usually take for males to show up? Out of them all I can't see any with colour in. I have three generations, 2 months old, 1 month and a day old. Obviously the day old ones I don't have a chance but you would have thought the rest would be showing something by now.

I've been feeding them up on micro worm so they are ranging from around 10 to 15 mm already with good full bellys.

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Mihai Varban

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MA Wembley said they take them but give you no money. Pets at Home Camden said they won't because they have no quarantine tank. LFS in Bethnal Green (stay away from Lee. Talk to Chris) buys pairs at 40% but you need to call ahead and then they will haggle you down hard, usually with "bad math". Also I had the issue where they barely show color at all but they had the genital fin developed. They only showed full color 2 months in.
 

Polly

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It usually takes about 2 months for males to start showing but the colours can take their time and it can take longer if the water is cooler. Get a good magnifying glass and look at their ventral fins. Males start to get a more pointed ventral fin and then can move it to the side. Within a few days it's become the gonopodium. This happens before colours start showing in my experience. A little before this you may notice some of the fry showing off to each other, these are more likely to be males - I've had males of only a month old show this behaviour.

The sequence seems to be,

1. Some of the fry will start sparring and showing off to each other - these are likely to be males.
2. Other fry will be more interested in eating, even dedicated to it - these are more likely to be females.
3. The anal fins of some of the fry will become more pointed and at the same time they will gain the ability to move it to the side, and a few days later this will have become the gonopodium.
4. Around the same time, the black spot above the anal fin will start to become smaller until it will disappear entirely - again, these are more likely to be males.
5. Colours will begin to show on the males. Not all the time at first, but definitely around feeding time. As time goes on, more and more colour will show and it will persist for longer until they are fully coloured.

I found that I have had mainly male fry. Not sure if I've been lucky or if it's because my tanks are kept at 22C. I also had the fry explosion. Bought a shoal of Phantom Tetras to cull the excess naturally. It was a kinder and quicker alternative to overpopulation and fish dying of lack of oxygen etc. I now have three unmated Females in a small female only tank, and 17 males in the main aquarium. If i do have any more fry it will be because the males are dying off, and I'll be choosing the male carefully to keep the colours and pattern of the best specimens and only one of the females will be mated ;)

As you have found, the females have larger and larger broods as time goes on and this can quickly become a problem, especially if you have limited space and more than one female. Add the female fry and you're quickly into triple figures unless you do something to prevent them breeding.
 
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Very interesting thanks, so there's still chance some of these could be males. If I can find a shop that will happily take the young off my hands I don't mind carrying on with the project and see if I can bring some nice fish into the hobby. Don't really fancy setting up a second tank unless I really have to.


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