Zebras- what did I just witness?

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TwoTankAmin
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Zebras- what did I just witness?

Post by TwoTankAmin »

I have seen this before, but only at night. Two zebras on the front glass clashing. They come together side to side, scrape against each other, then separate and then repeat the process. They move all over the front glass doing this. It sure looks like fighting and would explain the scrapings we often see on the sides of zebras in a group tank. I grabbed my camera and tried for some shots. Unfortunately, I have never learned how to use the movie feature on my camera, so the best I might have are stills, but I have not looked to see what I got. I was about to clean the tank when this happened.

What made this unusual is that one of the two fish involved was a dad on almost free swimmers. I checked and he was out of the cave and when he apparently won the fight, he returned to his dad duties. He has since come back out and was hanging on the front glass close to the cave entrance.

A couple of things occurred to me. The most likely situation was it was a female wanting to spawn and he wanted no part of it until his current brood was free swimming. Is it possible this was actually two males fighting? if so is this normal? I have never observed a dad leaving his cave with babies in it over a pecking order issue.

I will post pics later on if I have anything usable. The closer I got to the tank the more inclined the two seemed to want to hide from me, so I stopped moving and just shot a few times.
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Re: Zebras- what did I just witness?

Post by bekateen »

I've seen plenty of plecos clash like that, but almost always two males. I hope your pics came out well.

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Re: Zebras- what did I just witness?

Post by YSR50 »

My frogs would do this often.


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Re: Zebras- what did I just witness?

Post by TwoTankAmin »

I know males will fight. However, I have never seen a dad guarding offspring in his cave come out to fight except to chase off females trying to get in. The dad would never get far from the cave and there was no body clashing. He just chased them off and they ran rather than fight. This was a full blown fight and I checked the cave to confirm there were still babies in it before the male went back into it, which there were.

When I got this breeding group back in mid April 06, I had to bring home two males in caves because they refused to come out. It is entirely possible that one or both had a spawn in the cave as they were actively spawning in May. Back then I had no experience with spawning zebras, only bristlenose.
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Re: Zebras- what did I just witness?

Post by Jools »

It makes no sense that it would be a female as the cave would be left for another male. However, that it's a male is interesting not that the dad left the cave but likely the other male is trying to get the cave and/or "custody" of the young fry which would make him more attractive to potential mates.

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Re: Zebras- what did I just witness?

Post by cavefish »

I've found 3 week old fry with eggs in the same cave more than once with the Hypancistrus I've bred (L340 & L201). My point being if the female is really ready to spawn, the male would probably let her in the cave.

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Re: Zebras- what did I just witness?

Post by TwoTankAmin »

I got a couple of pic which are lousy, but better than nothing.
zebraclash1.jpg
zebraclash2.jpg
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Re: Zebras- what did I just witness?

Post by Baardman »

bodyshape tells me two males

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