Julies vs Calvus

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Post by cancichfan on Sun Feb 14, 2010 1:34 pm

OK, I am torn. I keep going back and forth about what I want to put in my tank. Julies or Calvus (or Comps)? I like both...a lot. I think the Calvus are neat looking, like what I've read and been told about the behaviour (thanks Rift_Lake_Rules) but I am not sure about the slower growth or even if I am going to be able find some in my area. Likewise, I think the various Julie species look great and would be a nice addition to the tank. I just don't know what I want. I've never seen either in anyone's tank because I don't know anyone around here that keeps either.

So, I am appealing to the masses for your opinion. What has been your experience with either/both? Or, am I missing the boat entirely on a different species that I should be looking at? I admit, I am drawn to the less common species in general (But then why do I have a tank full of the very rare yellow labs???)

The fish would have to be able to fit the following requirements:

1. Fit in a 29 gallong (30x12x18)
2. Be fairly idiot proof for a newbie
3. Be interesting to watch and get along with some shell-dwellers.

That's about it.
Any suggestions would be appreciated.
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Post by football mom on Mon Feb 15, 2010 11:08 pm

I really like the J. transcriptus Kissi Bemba aka Pemba. I have 2 pair of them, although neither pair has spawned.
They are a dwarf Juli, and would do OK in that size tank. One of my pair is in a 20 long.

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Post by Rockfish on Tue Feb 16, 2010 7:04 am

Because of your tank size I would go with the Julie's preferably Transcriptus or Ornatus again due to size.
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Post by cancichfan on Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:24 pm

Thank you both. I appreciate the advice.
I have yet to find Julies in my neighbourhood. I did find some wild-caught Comps but they were 3 for $55 and if I was to get 6, just to move 4 back out when they paired up, seems a bit price prohibitive. They were small, 1 to 2 inches long. Does this seem like a decent price to you?
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Post by Rockfish on Fri Feb 19, 2010 9:48 am

Graham being from New York I tend to be a bit of a sceptic, that being said it's hard to believe anyone would sell wild caught Comps 3 for $55.00 Normally even at a bargain you would pay $25.00 to $30.00 each.
Who knows anythings possible but I doubt they are wild. Just my 2 cents dunno
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Post by cancichfan on Fri Feb 19, 2010 10:19 am

Thanks. I will be in New York State in a couple hours (driving back from York PA...) I considered trying to swing by Atlantis but I doubt I'd get there in time and I don't think they are open to the public today anyway.

I appreciate your comments, I may re-consider the comps if they are truly wild but you are probably right...there could be some cause for concern. It is also possible I mis-read the sign and they were $55 each.

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Post by Rift_Lakes_Rule on Fri Feb 19, 2010 5:07 pm

I too would be skeptical, not only by the price but the size also. That's the big advantage of buying WC is that you don't have to wait for them to grow up. I'd expect a WC male to be in the 3"+ range with females being 2 1/2"+ and those would be the smallest I'd expect. Good call Rocky Wink

If you were to buy WC you wouldn't want to get 6 of them. I bought a trio, but they are often sold in pairs. (that's not to say they'd pair up tho, which is why I went with a trio)

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Post by cancichfan on Tue Feb 23, 2010 5:28 pm

Well, looks like I have decided on Juli's. Mostly because I couldn't find any calvus around here but also because they are cute little fish. I will save up my pennies for a bigger tank that I can fill with calvus some other time.

I ended up getting 5 J. ornatus. Not sure if this was the right number or not but that's what I got. I re-arranged my rocks to have two different piles and maybe they will find enough space for all of them or maybe I'll be re-housing some in the future.

Here's a picture of what I ended up with. They are just tank-raised LFS Juli's, nothing special. Also, there's a shot of the tank. I do have one question. Is there still enough room in the middle for a pair of shellies? Or should I have stuck to my original plan and done 1/2 and 1/2? I'd still like to add a pair of shell dwellers if I could.

The New Arrivals.
Julies vs Calvus IMG_1176

Settling In.
Julies vs Calvus IMG_1177

The Tank.
Julies vs Calvus IMG_1175
Can I squeeze in some shellies? Not sure why but when I previewed, I am cutting off the side of the tank. The rocks are about the same depth as on the left. They are wild-caught slate that I captured on a recent excursion to the US. Pennsylvanic roadsidicus I believe. I am not in love with my background now either. Too many paint chips...I wouldn't do a spray foam one again although I know others here have had good success. I should tell you the story sometime of the exploding foam can.
Let me know what you think.
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Post by bulldogg7 on Tue Feb 23, 2010 6:16 pm

Nice shots, the forum crops pictures bigger than 800px wide, it's supposed to resize them but instead it's been cutting them short.
Some shellies would be cool

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Post by Rockfish on Tue Feb 23, 2010 8:49 pm

Congratulations Graham Julies vs Calvus Icon_exclaim Nice looking Julies and camera work too. Actually you did the right thing getting 5 especially if you have any desire for them to spawn. You see Julies need to form a pair bond that will normally last until they are separated or one dies. The best way to get a pair to bond is to start with a small group of young fish and you will eventually get a pair providing you have both males and females in your group. Once a pair forms it usually isn't long before the breeding starts. Julies are secretive cave spawners and often times the only way you will know eggs have been laid is the female will disappear for a while to tend the them. During this time the male will become very defensive of the territory and will charge at any fish that comes near. Because of this very protective parental behaviour and the fact that your tank is only 30'' long it may be difficult for the shellies to set up a territory out of the way of the Julies but not impossible especially if you use some rocks to break the line of sight between the two. Unfortunately in my experience the fish remaining in the group after the pairing are often harassed to the point of exhaustion and are better off removed.
Good luck and enjoy them they are great fish.
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Post by Rift_Lakes_Rule on Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:10 pm

Congrats, they look great!!! cheers

Great info Rocky Wink

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Post by jimmymac on Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:29 pm

Neolamprologus leleupi "firecracker"
They wont work with shellies to well from what I've read.
Nice contrast with the bright orange.
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Post by cancichfan on Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:35 pm

bulldogg7 wrote:Nice shotsl

Thank you. I still have a ways to go to get to your level but I'll keep trying.

Rockfish: Really appreciate the support. Glad to hear I'm on the right track with these. I do want them to breed so hopefully they will eventually pair up. Actually, I wanted to ask what this "pairing up" looked like. They were only in the tank about an hour when I noticed one that seemed to be the dominant male already. He would approach one smaller fish in particular and that fish would sort of curl his/her belly towards the sand and do a little tail shimmy which the big guy seemed to like. Didn't chase that one at all but has started to chase a couple of the others.

If I get a pair formed, I will have to pull the others out I guess. Not sure what to do with them. Hopefully I can get store credit if I return them. Or, I can buy another tank...

If I see them getting really territorial, I will pull out the unpaired ones and remove whatever rocks they aren't using to give more room for some multi's or something. That is what I've been looking for. Not sure how many but just a few.

Getting new fish rules! My poor mbuna juvies are gonna get neglected now. Last summer I had one tank of local fish, now I've got 3 with the Tangs, Malawi's and 3 baby yellow labs. What's next? If it's another tank I am in trouble...
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Post by Rockfish on Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:14 pm

MTS is an awful diseaseJulies vs Calvus Lol
That could be a sign of pairing but you can be sure when two of them seem to spend a lot of time very close to each other without any of the chasing or aggression the others are getting.
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Post by Aura on Wed Feb 24, 2010 12:49 pm

I like those ornatus! Good luck with them pairing up. My transcriptus didn't take long at all to form a pair. They chose an area and wouldn't let any of the others near it. I ended up having to remove the extras because they were being chased around and were hanging near the surface.

I think the background looks fine and when it gets some algae growing on it, you probably won't notice any chips.

Don't know about adding the shelllies -- I don't have much experience with the Tangs, but I would think that it would be good to get them in the tank before too much time has passed -- while the Julies are still small and haven't become too territorial.
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Post by cancichfan on Wed Feb 24, 2010 6:20 pm

Don't know how well you can see this but check out how big the mouth on these little guys can get when they are about to square off. Had a small territorial dispute and I got a quick shot. Hard to keep them in focus. They locked up for a couple seconds right after this but this is the only shot I could get.

"Focus...!"Julies vs Calvus IMG_1210

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Post by Rockfish on Wed Feb 24, 2010 7:34 pm

Are you sure? To me it just looks like they're yelling at each other.Julies vs Calvus Lol
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Post by cancichfan on Wed Feb 24, 2010 7:51 pm

Heck, they could be singing opera for all I know...

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Post by Rift_Lakes_Rule on Wed Feb 24, 2010 8:43 pm

LOL!!! Whatever they're doin, it sure made for a great photo!!! Wink

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Post by cancichfan on Fri Feb 26, 2010 10:12 pm

Well, I don't know if they are a pair yet but two of them have dug a little cave in the sand under a rock and are sort of snuggling up in it, taking turns swimming in and out.
I took a video but I have no idea how to post it (it is .AVI format for Mac and is about 160 MB...no idea how to make it MPEG4 or whatever YouTube wants).

OK - Canadian Women just blew the Gold in curling...to the Swedes. Now if we lose the hockey game tonight, I may just dig a cave under a rock and crawl in myself.

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Post by Rift_Lakes_Rule on Fri Feb 26, 2010 10:29 pm

Sounds like a pair to me Wink time will tell for sure tho

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Post by Rockfish on Sat Feb 27, 2010 7:08 am

I think they've found each other Julies vs Calvus 15
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Post by theswede on Sat Feb 27, 2010 7:52 am

cancichfan wrote:
OK - Canadian Women just blew the Gold in curling...to the Swedes. Now if we lose the hockey game tonight, I may just dig a cave under a rock and crawl in myself.

Sorry mate! This curling team is one of the best in the world. They also wonn the Olympic gold in 2002, but this time they were lucky. Look out for the US in the hockey final. They have a great team with the best goalie of the tournament. I can´t wait to see it. Hockey rules.
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Post by theswede on Sat Feb 27, 2010 7:57 am

Nice setup! I think shellies would look and work great in that tank.
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Post by cancichfan on Sat Feb 27, 2010 12:45 pm

theswede wrote:
Sorry mate! This curling team is one of the best in the world. They also wonn the Olympic gold in 2002, but this time they were lucky. Look out for the US in the hockey final. They have a great team with the best goalie of the tournament. I can´t wait to see it. Hockey rules.

Well, losing to Sweden isn't so bad (compared to a few others I won't mention...) I doubt I can watch the Canada/US final too stressful, especially after Canada fell apart in the 3rd period last night. Maybe I'll clean my tanks or just sit and watch the fish or something relaxing instead.
Thanks everyone for all your advice on this post. The fish are doing fine and I'll let you know if I ever see any babies.

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