Thursday, February 3, 2011

Making Babies, cichlid style

This is from Ad Konings' invaluable book "Malawi Cichlids in their natural habitat." These little fellows are kinky.
" In species where the eggs are fertilized inside the female's mouth the sequence is different. At first the male leads the female to the actual spawning site and, once arrived, positions himself in front of and at right angles to her. He then lowers his body and presses his anal fin against the substrate. Quivering of the fins (especially the anal) accompanies this posture. While the male discharges sperm (which is sometimes visible (e.g. in Copadichromis borleyi) the female mouths the crease between his anal fin and his body, thus picking up sperm before she has deposited a single egg.
Next, while the female remains in position, the male turns around and nudges her anal region (or caudal peduncle), coaxing her to start circling around. After one or two rounds the female slows down and deposits some eggs."
I'm going to try to use the phrase "caudal peduncle" at least five times today.
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