Please ID this Mandarin Male/ Female

Discussion in 'ID Needed' started by TheresaC, 15 Feb 2014.

  1. TheresaC

    TheresaC

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    Hi Guys,

    Can anybody please tell me if my spotted Mandarin is Male or Female? I want to add another Mandarin to my tank and just want to make sure what the gender is before I go out and buy one...

    Thanks a mill!!!!

    image.jpg
     
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  3. TheresaC

    TheresaC Thread Starter

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    Here's another pic of the Mandarin

    image.jpg
     
  4. leslie hempel

    leslie hempel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Is the first spike of the dorsal fin long? If so its a male females have no elongated fin.
     
  5. TheresaC

    TheresaC Thread Starter

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    Thanks @leslie. It has a tiny little fin but very tiny.
     
  6. leslie hempel

    leslie hempel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    How long have you had it? If a while im assuming its a female. But if youve just bought it idd wait a while to see if a fin doesnt grow. Sometimes they are damaged is the capture and shipping process making gender identification a bit difficult.
     
  7. butcherman

    butcherman Moderator MASA Contributor

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    best guess female.
     
  8. TheresaC

    TheresaC Thread Starter

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    Thank you Leslie and butcherman. Thank you for your help. Ive had it for about 4 months now. Im sure it must be a female then, which is great because I have my eye on a beautiful green male at the marine dealer. They will be ok with each other if the male is much bigger?
     
  9. Jayte

    Jayte

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    They wil be fine I have a small mandarin female and a big male mandarin(dragonettes)mine are always together!
     
  10. leslie hempel

    leslie hempel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Cool definatley sounds like a female.
     
  11. TheresaC

    TheresaC Thread Starter

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    Hi peeps,

    So I bought a male mandarin dragonette today. After acclimation I let him in. He seemed a bit shy and after swimming a bit he found a spot at the back near the overflow. My female quickly noticed him and went straight to where he was. She raised her fins and seemed very annoyed with him. He is a lot bigger than she is.

    They swam to and away from each other for about and hour and then she actually attacked him... It didnt seem to bother him so they went their separate ways...
    Not long there after the two reunited again. There was still some 'iffyness' between them but they stayed close to each other. The female was a lot less aggressive towards the male. The male seemed to try and swim away from her but she kept following him. He raised his fins a few times but she now didnt seem bothered. They seem a bit 'iffy' but not violent towards each other. According to the research I've done they will attack with force if threatened or territorial towards the opposite sex. Is this normal behaviour when a second mandarin in the aquarium or should I keep them apart?
     
  12. VicZA

    VicZA

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    sorry for the slight hijack ... are Mandarins easy to keep? do they have strange dietary requirements or anything ?
     
  13. TheresaC

    TheresaC Thread Starter

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    They are hard to keep because they are very finicky eaters. Most of them only feed on live food - they especially love copepods. They have to eat small amounts the whole day. Reason for this is they don't have a stomach like other fish to 'store' their food. You can say what goes in comes out again very quickly. Most of mandarin deaths will be due to starvation. They become very thin if live food is not available almost all the time. Best is to have a good copepod population. They will pick copepods off live rock, the sand, the glass etc. the whole day. They are pretty awesome creatures and they remind me of hummingbirds because of the way the move about with those little fins.
     
  14. Paul B

    Paul B

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    The females smell better
     
  15. TheresaC

    TheresaC Thread Starter

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    It's very difficult to get them to take frozen food and if they do you have to feed multiple times daily.
     
  16. TheresaC

    TheresaC Thread Starter

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    @Paul - females always smell better. LOL.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  17. TheresaC

    TheresaC Thread Starter

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    I got this off a reefing website @VicZA

    Mandarin fish are probably one of the most beautiful reef-safe fish that are available for hobbyists today. With their graceful meanderings, their colorful markings and gossamer fins, people quickly fall in love with these gentle creatures. Surprisingly, they aren't that expensive, giving the reef keeper even more motivation to acquire one.

    There are various types of Mandarins, such as the large blue, red or green Synchiropus splendidus, and the smaller Target or Spotted Synchiropus picturatus. These fish hunt for food all day long, picking at the rockwork for bugs smaller than we can see. At night, they rest. While they rest, their colors fade substantially, so don't worry.

    To successfully keep one of these fish, it is best to have everything ready before you buy.


    Your reef tank should have already been established for at least six months to one year.
    You need to have a minimum of 75 lbs of Live Rock.
    I strongly recommend having a working refugium incorporated and teaming with 'pods' of all kinds.
    If you have any other pod-eating fish in your tank, such as a Six Line Wrasse, it is possible to starve a Mandarin. They move slowly seeking live food, so faster fish will consume its prey! You may get lucky and buy a Mandarin that eats prepared foods, but many don't and thus your tank will have to provide all of its food naturally.

    A few ways are available to improve your success, such as building 'pod piles' or hatching baby brine shrimp. A pod pile is a small collection of rock carefully stacked together so that fish can't get in between them. Some hobbyists will take a strawberry basket from the supermarket and fill it with small bits of live rock, and invert this onto the floor of their tank. The fish can't enter the basket so the pods can propagate safely. As they emerge from the basket, the mandarin can eat. If you don't like the look of a basket, you can pile up bits of rock in the corners, but you may have to re stack them again later as crabs and fish flip them over.

    While I don't recommend this as the only food source, hatching brine shrimp is easy and can be done on a rotating basis where you have one new batch each day, providing a constant supply of food. Feeding newly hatched brine is more nutritious because the yolk-sac is still attached. So if you want to generate the potential food source with this method, it will work as long as you keep up with your hatcheries. Having a refugium tied into your system is the best or preferred method, as you'll always be creating new bugs for your fish to eat, where they breed safely and can't be devoured (until they enter the display tank). You will have to feed phytoplankton to your tank and refugium, because the copepods, amphipods and other tiny crustaceans need to eat as well.

    So, if you feed your little bugs, they will breed and make more. And this in turn will provide the food necessary to keep a beautiful Mandarin fat and happy. And that is no joke, as a fat mandarin is a happy one.

    A few more thoughts.....

    These fish don't get Ich as they secrete an oily substance on their bodies. Their skin type and the oils secreted make them extremely sensitive to many medications. What may heal one species will more than likely kill a mandarin. So if your other fish develop ich, the mandarin is not to be put in to quarantine. Which is fortunate because it would starve to death if you did, assuming the medication didn't kill it first.

    You can recognize a male from a female because the male has a sharp spike on his dorsal fin. If you decide you want a pair of mandarins, make sure you have plenty of LR to support their food source, and that you have one male and one female. Putting a pair of mandarins in a tank smaller than 125g would probably be a mistake, unless they ate prepared foods. I've watched mine eat Formula One or Formula Two small pellet food, mysis, baby brine shrimp, cyclop-eeze and more, but others have stated their fish accepted nothing but live prey.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  18. VicZA

    VicZA

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    wow seems like a big job ... wonder if I would ever be able to go on holiday again ... maybe when I retire I will get one - :tt2::thumbup:
     
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