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About Me

  1. I’m wondering if the yellow lab that looks more orange or the one on top in the picture is male or female. Also the one in the top of the picture has a bump where it’s Anus is. And I’m wondering if that’s normal.
  2. I recently upgraded my multi colony to this 29g. There are currently 12-16 mature adults with 2-3 Bull males. Also 8 grow out juveniles and who knows how many fry in the 3+ dozen shells. They started burying their shells and breeding immediately after moving in, surprise, surprise. I also settled on the new rock configuration I think. Lots of levels, angled line of sight breaks, and many caves/crevices in the holey rock/dragon stone combo. I think this should allow me to get a trio of julidochromis transcriptus. Still waiting on 2 XXL Anubias for those corner planter stones to help with additional cover and breaks of sight and soaking up those nitrates. I think I should also get a power head just to make sure no debris is really settling all over the rockwork. I have a Seachem Tidal HOB and a Medium Size Co-Op Sponge. Is it possible to maybe grow out a single Calvus/Compressiceps or any of the Altolamprologus species in said tank? I’ve read how they take forever to hit full size, so maybe I could have one for a while before needing to trade em in or sell it? What do y’all think? Any advice or experience you have in the matter would be greatly appreciated!
  3. Lot of planted tank, nano fish, shrimp, and snail talk around here. Not much for African cichlids or other larger species but this thread is AC only. I admit over the last 2 years I have throughly enjoyed learning about plants and keeping smaller fish and tanks. But I was looking into my AC tank tonight and the beauty of these fish reminded me of when I bought them all as juveniles. Every day I was so excited to come home after work when the lights were on to see if they had started showing color yet! When my venustus got the slightest patch of blue on his face I was smiling for days. I didn’t believe everyone saying they were a difficult fish to keep. The aggression is a real factor and to keep the hierarchy in check is near impossible. I have an all male show tank and they can get rough with each other. Anyway feel free to post some pics of your AC from any lake, river, whatever as long their from Africa and a cichlid.
  4. Just wanted to hop on and share my COOP inspired Lethrinops Mbasi species only planted tank. Really enjoying how its coming a long and owe a lot to Cory and the COOP for that.
  5. These are up for adoption at my local chain pet store. They were labeled as creamsicle cichlids. Would love help identifying them!
  6. Hey Guys! Can someone help me identify? He's hard to get a side picture of. If I could pet him he'd probably like it. lol Got it from a friend who is moving and he didn't know. He or her is REALLY really aggressive to my other fish which I put in another tank. Thinking other fish might not be a good idea. Curious if there are some cool shrimp or snails... etc that I might be able to put in the tank. If not I'll just let him have his own 75 gallon tank as I really enjoy his charisma. Named him Marshall!
  7. I'm wondering if this would be feasible. I have a heavily planted 75 gallon, stocked with Guppies, Cory's, a Koi Betta, Cherry Shrimp, and a few ottos. Plants include Val, Dwarf Sag, Ludwigia, Hornwort, various Anubias, and Moneywort. If I add some Demasoni, how bad would they tear up the plants and fish? And how many to stock?
  8. I recently added small peacocks and jewel cichlids to my 75 gallon planted barb tank. No aggression at all.
  9. So basically my question is if I have a small colony of multis would I need to worry about upside down catfish eating all the fry. Upside down cats being synodontis nigriventris I believe. I know it could be an issue with other synodontis but to my understanding these guys seem less of an issue?
  10. Just wanted to share this little clip of my african cichlid, since I'm so excited. They have started to breed! I noticed this one was very shy and didn't eat at all, so I placed it by itself on a 20g long and when I examined it closer, I saw tiny fry squirming inside the mouth, that's when I remembered that some africans are mouthbrooders! You can see the little fellas thru his skin, they even move a bit! Can you spot the little eyes? I've seen Rick from Co-op's video shake them off to drop out the fry in order to avoid stressing the mom too much right? Any way to tell when the fry is ready to do that? I've noticed this cichlid is a bit stressed so I'd like her to regain strenght and eat as soon as possible.
  11. Hello all! Greetings from Michigan. I'm new to the forum and was wondering if anyone had any advice on how to make my saulosi less skittish. This is my first experience keeping african chiclids. I bought them as juveniles about ten months ago and they were fearless, always begging for food. Then one day, maybe 6 months ago, They started to flee and hid every time I would approach the tank to feed them. I've been racking my brain trying to figure out what changed, but over time I just became used to it. I tried approaching the tank with the room light off, but that didn't make any difference. Tank info: 75 gal. 10 saulosi (5 Male/5 Female) 6 synodonis petricola added shortly after the saulosi. Lace rock, black diamond blasting sand, vallisnaria, anubias barteri. 2x sponge filters. 1x 4ft stingray light. The tank is quite low to the floor, the lower tank on a double rack that I made. Maybe that makes them nervous? I though about maybe adding more fish, more females, more or fewer hiding places. Thoughts? Edit: I thought I should add that its not just when I approach the tank. If I sit on the floor 10ft away, they just dart around near the bottom. in and out of the rocks. I remember awhile back I searched and found one of Cory's old livestreams and he responded to a similar question saying that they are rock dwellers and that is normal behavior (paraphrased from memory). I just posted this after seeing Tazawa Tanks recent video and his saulosi were all in open water. Maybe just takes time? Anyway, mostly just asking out of curiosity, still loving the tank, rescued one fry yesterday so they can't be too upset. Edit2: ammonia 0 ppm nitrite 0ppm nitrate 20ppm gh 11 kh 6 temp 74
  12. New here, but been a fan for years on youtube. Not sure where to post, but having odd behavior in our 300 gallon African cichlid tank. I'm a bit confused. Fish are flashing here and there, and sometimes scratching. All water parameters are spot on. Fish show no signs of anything, temp is good, services on filtration done, extra aeration...I just can't figure this one out, but something is wrong. Behavior is just not right.
  13. Alrighty: got a 55 gal. assorted Malawi Mbuna tank that we want to move all fish out of, and begin focusing on colonizing with ONE line / species of African Cichlid. Our goal is not to make profit, per say, by selling fry. But to produce an absolutely beautiful Cichlid that we can be very happy with. Some parameters, before you share suggestions: we are not interested in tiny, shy, adorable, rare Tanganyikan neos, shell dwellers, calvus, etc. We want rich colors... beauty... but, at the same token, mostly tired of common peacock color morphs. Not interested in the common mbunas... Auratus, Acei, Red Zebras, Cobalt blues, Johannis, or Giraffe Haps. Given that, what would you suggest for a new African Cichlid species only tank?
  14. My fiancé has seen the light! I’m getting rid of the sofa to make room for a 75gal. I want to upgrade/expand my current cichlid setup and want to add live plants. I know I’m somewhat limited due to cichlid habits and pH, but understand it can be done. Inspire and educate me! I’m a visual person, so would love to see your photos.
  15. Does anyone know if a livingstoni and a albino compressiceps will work in a mixed peacock/hap tank. I know they get big, but will they kill everyone else.
  16. How was it best to deal with aggression in a African cichlid tank with peacocks and harps
  17. My LFS is still selling 75 gallon tanks for $100, time to start planning my next system, a Mbuna tank. My primary focus when aquascaping a Mbuna tank will be to create as many 'caves' as possible. This is a highly territorial rock dwelling fish that wants a place to call home. In my previous tank, the Mbuna were quite happy on doing the work of digging out the gravel/sand to make a home, nothing else to do in a tank. So I want to create an environment where the Mbunas have many areas they can dig out the sand/gravel and create a home. How do this is quite simple, first I will place a piece of PVC pipe with a section cut off: Then place a large rock on top as shown below: Now the Mbunas can literal dig out under the rock creating a nice little home they can call their own. This design may require some walls to prevent the gravel/sand from pouring in, you can do this by using the pipe sections cut off: another option is some screen material: Here are a couple quick prototype (I used an old drawer), the first shows the rocks sloping upward. Filled with some crush coral (most likely I will use sand). Here is one with no sloop: And finally, filled with crush coral: Now this is still a work in progress but to build a wall, add pipes of increasing height: Now add some rocks: Gorilla (polyurethane) glue From the PlantedTank forum, I found this quote from a company rep: This makes sense, polyurethane glues will cure by a chemical reaction, once complete the atoms are bonded together. My first interest in Gorilla glue for this project, cover your rocks with a substrate material such as sand to give your aquascape a consistent look. My original source for rocks was landscaping rocks at my former employer. Unfortunately they removed all the rocks. I will not pay $2/lb for rocks at my local fish store, that just too expensive. One rock source near me is a drainage culvert near my house. These are standard boring construction rocks with a dull gray color. To create a rock, put on some disposable glove, spray some water on the rock and cover it with the Gorilla glue. Toss the rock into a bucket of substrate and fully cover it, wait a few hours before removing. Gorilla will foam up while curing; the thicker application will foam up more. It will also remove any sharp jagged edges on the rocks. Below are some examples: The one on the left is a drainage culvert rock, the middle one is covered with pool filter sand, the one on the right used pool sand and a PetCo fine black gravel. With this method, you can make all your rocks look similar. A closeup of the middle rock: The darker area were created by not apply the any Gorilla glue, it's the gray from the rock. Lots of potential using this idea, more work to be done. Finally, the piece of pipe support the rocks covered with pool filter sand: Hopefully the pipes will blend it when the Mbuna dig up the sand. Well that's it for now, all opinions are welcomed.
  18. What’s the lowest you think you can keep them and it be safe ? Have 5 juvi placidochromis jalo reef in a planted fluval flex 15 with fluval stratum and it has my ph on it around 7.4 added some crushed coral to buffer it out and keep it stable
  19. New 55 Tank looks awesome--14 small Ciclids- Labs, Zebra blue and orange, golden===so just ordered and received your plants Anubias Barteri, and Windelov" Java Fern . and Vallisneria how it will change the water parameters. From what I see they need 20 nitrate in the water. Got root tabs, easy planters and easy green. .was wondering what to expect--will the put root tab in with the plant. and easy planter ...and i guess if nitrate gets too low then add easy green once a week---or till get 20 nitrate
  20. Hey everyone! This thread will map out my steps towards one of my African Cichlid tank builds. I will go into as much detail as I can and I hope this helps push some of you to get into Cichlid-keeping, especially Africans. In my opinion, they really are the pinnacle of the freshwater hobby.😉 So the tank in question! The tank was my birthday present, to myself😂 Mum and Dad gave me the money, you can guess where I spent it😉. Here we are talking about a shallow 120x40x30 tank, holding 144L with some bespoke features. I opted for a custom build, mainly because of the dimensions and I wanted optiwhite glass. I’m not sure what it’s called in the US, but it’s basically the clearest glass on the market across the pond. This tank features a braced top, allowing for glass sheet lids which can be individually removed. Since African Cichlids are such pigs, I went for a feeding hole on each sheet to help get food around the tank. I opted for black silicone, just to keep a bit of variety between my tanks. This tank is essentially a 40G LowBoy, which doesn't sound like enough water volume for Mbuna's, but the focus of the tank is the footprint, which I would guess competes with 75G's? Sorry we don't use gallons across the pond so I have no clue!😂 Filtration will be a modded Fluval 307, allowing for plenty of mechanical, biological and chemical filtration. My favourite thing about canister filters is the mechanical filtration you can do with them. Yes I could run just sponge filters and the fish would be fine, but for display tanks I always want clarity. Sponges are great for biological filtration, not so great for mechanical. The 307 is set up as so- 2x foams supplied by Fluval Basket 1: Fluval Prefilter rings, Fluval BioFoam + (Supplied) and 1x Fluval Quick Clear Pad. I expect the foams to miss quite a bit of gunk and so I'd like the large particles to get trapped as low as possible, in what I'd consider secondary settlement. Then, I've gone for the supplied foams to trap what's left before the single quick clear pad traps the finer particles. This finishes the mechanical filtration in the canister filter. Basket 2: Seachem Matrix-2L total. I'm not really expecting to cultivate a lot of denitrifying bacteria, but I don't think I'm too bothered. I'll have to do water changes regardless anyway, so a full cycle will just be a bonus!😂 Basket 3: Seachem Matrix, 1x Fluval Quick Clear Pad and 100ml Seachem Purigen The idea behind placing filter floss at the final stage of filtration is it forces water through the pad and then straight to the Purigen, allowing minimal bypass. Chemical filtration is unnecessary, but again I like to opt for it in displays. Other equipment which will be used in this tank- 1x 200W Heater 2x SunSun JVP-1102 Wavemakers (Depending on whether the sand can tolerate 2) 1x 120CM Nicrew Planted LED 1x Digital Light Timer Eggcrates & hardscape Now the fun bit, the stocking! Given it will be a tight fit, I've opted for relatively docile species and dwarf ones where I could. Iodotropheus Sprengerae Makokola Reef Pseudtropheus Cyaneorhabdos Maingano F2 Labidochromis Caeruleus Nkhata Bay F2 Chindongo Saulosi Taiwan Reef F2 I should add, do as I say not as I do!😂 This isn't a setup I wouldn't recommend the average fishkeeper does, as aggression levels are usually difficult to maintain in African Cichlid tanks and maintenance in general is higher. As I will be using tap water, water changes can be as large and as frequent as they need to be. The fish will bought as young juveniles and given the chance to establish the hierarchy early on, to save problems later on. I hope to grow out and maintain a 1:4 ratio. Backup tanks are always a must too. Tap water parameters, on average- 7.4PH 11dKH 16dGH 0.5 ppm Ammonia (Max) 20-40ppm Nitrate (Varies year round) Now I need to get on with building the stand! 🙂
  21. I want to set up a tank with african cichlids. I currently have a spare 55 gallon tank that could use. How many cichlids could I get if I used it and what kinds of rocks and decorations could I use?
  22. I’m new to using forums and posted this last evening, but realized today it ended up as a reply to another topic... still learning more than just fish keeping 🤷🏻‍♀️ I have a “new” African cichlid tank... set up in August. I’m new to the hobby, but felt like I got thru the initial cycling, etc without getting too frustrated. I expected some fish loss as I learned, But... I’m thinking of throwing in the towel. Somewhere along the line I guess I ended up with a bully. After a large handful of obvious and/or suspected murders, I pulled the killer and replaced the lost fish. The “bully cycle” started again shortly after. More observation led me to believe I may have traded out the wrong fish. I put the new “problem fish” into a basket rigged into the aquarium for a couple of weeks as I decided how to proceed. Still lost 1, maybe 2, during that time but thought I’d see it the “time out” helped. I released that fish and the murders picked up again, so now he’s gone, too. Unfortunately, I’ve lost 2 more since then. One might have been a freak accident due to a falling rock and getting stuck between decor and the glass, but the other was completely out of the blue today. Water tests always come out good. No signs of health issues... the one that I found dead today seemed perfectly happy this morning. He’s my 3rd death in exactly 3 weeks... I was advised to keep 16-20 fish in my aquarium. I’m now down to 12, but I’m hesitant to buy more since, overall, I’ve lost more fish than I’d like to admit. Partially from the learning curve, partially from whatever is killing them. Any ideas? Or should I have thrown in the towel a long time ago? I’d like to keep it going, but not if I’m going to go broke replacing dead fish. It’s not like these are 50 cents a piece
  23. let me start by saying I am fairly new to the hobby. a little over a year ago I got a 10 gal. with a betta and a couple snails. a few months later I bought a 30 gal. bow tank with some glow fish, a Betta, 6 Neon Tetras, and a few snails. I have been doing really well with those 2 tanks so now I am ready to graduate again. As the title says, I have decided I want to do a Cichlid Community tank. as of now , I already bought a 75gal Aqueon tank. Also, I bought a Fluval FX4 for my filter. I had just ordered 60 pounds of CaribSea Aquatics eco-Complete African Cichlids black sand. I am still looking for a heater. I was considering a fluval 300w e series. all ariticals I have read on them seem great but I am having trouble finding one. it seems a lot of places don't carry the E series. now,I'm wondering why? Are they not as good as they first appeared? OK... so my first main question is... should I buy a rain bar? I do plan on using all live plants. My next question I would like to have Cory McElroy answer if h happens to see this.... as I said I want Africans. The thig is I want to do it in a community tank. Im thinking a Plecco to help with Maitainence. I would also like to have atleast 2 red tail sharks, a couple rainbow fish or a small school of Tiger barbs (maybe 6 or 7). then the Cichlids I was thinking about were the electric yellow and electric blue. how many of each color cichlid should I get in a set up as I described.
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