South American Cichlids • Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Discussion regarding only South American Cichlid species. (Oscars, Geophagines, Discus, Apistogramma, Green Terrors, Angels, Severums, Pikes, etc.)

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Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby DC4L » Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:40 pm

I have been keeping Tanganyikans for years and I just picked up a 55gal for free.99 and I'd like to try something new. I am going to be planting it pretty heavily and have some sweet pieces of driftwood to throw in as well but I'm not really sure what kind of South Americans to go with. I would like to have 3-4 species if possible with as much color as possible as well but I know my options may be limited with this size tank. I guess my question is, if you guys had an empty 55gal, what would you stock it with?
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Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:28 pm
Location: Colorado Springs, Co

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Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby FanOfSkynyrd » Sat Jan 12, 2013 8:40 pm

If it were me, Rams (1m/3f) cories (6-8), bristlenose plecos (2) and some kind of dither fish (10-12)
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Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby DC4L » Sat Jan 12, 2013 9:12 pm

I like the rams. No offense, but what is the fascination with these cory cats? They seem to have taken this hobby by storm and I can't figure out why.
DC4L
 
Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:28 pm
Location: Colorado Springs, Co

Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby yamadog » Sat Jan 12, 2013 9:17 pm

I'd go with rams also, and a pair of threadfin acara and smaller geos,maybe pindare. And a big school of cardinal tetras. Lots of color and movement.
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Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby FanOfSkynyrd » Sat Jan 12, 2013 11:44 pm

DC4L wrote:I like the rams. No offense, but what is the fascination with these cory cats? They seem to have taken this hobby by storm and I can't figure out why.


I've always liked them, they are fairly active, peaceful, not very shy, and help keep the substrate cleaned...great community fish IMO.
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Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby BelieveInBlue » Sun Jan 13, 2013 2:58 am

A pair of angels will do nicely in a planted 55 as well. They can be a bit nasty though, and anything bite sized will almost certainly become food. That being said, a large, healthy pair of angels is a stunning sight.

Cory cats also have realy nice colours and patterns, and they do exhibit some interesting behaviour, especially in large schools. They also display cool mating dances, though that's not so easily seen. And of course, they scavenge left over food and prevent excess food from rotting and clouding up the water.
Dwarf cichlids: more personality per inch than just about any other animal you'll ever have as a pet
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Joined: Sat Jul 16, 2011 11:59 pm
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Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby DC4L » Sun Jan 13, 2013 12:12 pm

I have had angels before and never really had that much success. I'm really liking the info I am finding on the Acara/geophagus idea. Now I just have to find these fish. Colorado Springs seems to be where LFS go to die.
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Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:28 pm
Location: Colorado Springs, Co

Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby mok3t » Mon Jan 14, 2013 11:32 am

DC4L wrote:I like the rams. No offense, but what is the fascination with these cory cats? They seem to have taken this hobby by storm and I can't figure out why.


get a group of 6 or more corys and you'll understand. They're AWESOME fish.
Gavin,
In the hobby since 1993, Cichlids since 2005.
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Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2008 10:26 pm
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Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby verbal » Mon Jan 14, 2013 1:15 pm

DC4L wrote:I have had angels before and never really had that much success. I'm really liking the info I am finding on the Acara/geophagus idea. Now I just have to find these fish. Colorado Springs seems to be where LFS go to die.


You might want to go more for the acaras rather than the geophagus if your goal is a heavily planted tank. They are called Earth Eaters for a reason :)

There are some plants that will have no issues with most geophagus, but a lot of stem plants won't stay planted.
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Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby DC4L » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:44 pm

Maybe I will snag a few corys and see what the hype is about haha. Would six corys of the same species be best or could I mix and match and still see schooling behavior?
DC4L
 
Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:28 pm
Location: Colorado Springs, Co

Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby BelieveInBlue » Thu Jan 17, 2013 1:32 am

They do best in larger groups with the same species.
Dwarf cichlids: more personality per inch than just about any other animal you'll ever have as a pet
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Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby mok3t » Thu Jan 17, 2013 12:59 pm

I've always kept corys in minimum groups of 6. The social behavior seems to kick off well there and get better the more you add.
Gavin,
In the hobby since 1993, Cichlids since 2005.
mok3t
 
Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2008 10:26 pm
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Re: Thoughts on 55gal Setup

Postby mambee » Thu Jan 17, 2013 3:45 pm

Corys are the perfect fish. They are peaceful, active during the day, and are available in different patterns/colors. My favorite type is the Adolphoi/Duplicareus/Similis complex, which have an orange patch. You can get the more interesting ones online.

For your size tank, I would get a school of 6 corys, 5 Bolivian Rams, and 5 Angels. With the Angels, you should find a local breeder or purchase online. The ones available in the chain stores always seem sickly.

I have some Geo Surinamensis types in my 150, which I love, but they would get too big for your tank.
150 Gallon:
Uaru, Geophagus, Turquoise Severum, Angelfish, Silver Dollars
90 Gallon:
Bolivian Rams, Angelfish, Rummynoses, Corys, Dwarf Loaches, Badis Badis
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