Lake Tanganyika Species • is this set up suitable

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is this set up suitable

Postby Cajen » Fri May 25, 2012 8:06 pm

Hi,

I am a few days away from being able to start cycling my tanks. I will travel on business the week of 5/30 - 6/7. The MINUTE I return I will beging the cycling process. I have never had a Tanganyika tank before and I am SO excited. My 55g will be Mbuna and my 29g will be Tang. Anyway, my question is about the tank set-up for the Tanganyikan tank. Below is a picture of what I think will work. It will house Multies and either Altolamprologus Calvus (Black Inkfin) or Altolamprologus Compressicep Red Lufubu (not sure which but for the sake of this question it should not matter.

Is this tank set up properly for these two types of fish to be happy? I am running Aquaclear 110 as filtration with simple airstone. Typical 29g tank measurements.

Image

Oh, and the water has since cleared, this picture was taken shortly after setup. i have also added about 20 more shells where the shells are already... this gives me 44 shells total... 32 escargot, 10 whale eyes, 2 others that i do not recall the name of.

Thanks.
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby Pizzle » Fri May 25, 2012 8:20 pm

I think that you should start the cycle now. Try to get it to about 2ppm ammonia. Then by the time you get back from your trip, the cycle should have gotten a good start. There is no need to babysit the tank while it is cycling, especially during the first week or so. Are you hoping for a pair of calvus?
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby Cajen » Fri May 25, 2012 8:38 pm

Yes, on the Calvus pair, but I have not seen any pairs fornsale anywhere so will probably need to go with 6 Juvies and hope to get a pair from them. As to the larger tank I only have my 55g Mbuna tank and a 29 that is not set upnyet... It will be for fry or quarantine.

On the start cycling now... I will use Dr Tim's one and only to get a jump start, but with me gone for 10 days, wouldn't the bacteria "starve" from lack of ammonia to process?
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby Cajen » Sat May 26, 2012 1:12 pm

Please, those of you with Tanganyika tank experience, should I add more rock work, fake plants (yuk), silk plants.... More separation between shells and rock. Anything at all?
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby Deeda » Sun May 27, 2012 3:25 pm

Calvus and Comps seem to prefer slits to hide or live in so you can either create rock piles that mimic this layout or purchase ready made caves or shells that would work.

I'd pile the shells up more instead of having them spread out.

Is that a piece of driftwood on top of the rocks to the right? You could always use that to divide the tank in half making it more difficult for the Calvus/Comps to see the Multies.
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby Ptyochromis » Sun May 27, 2012 4:06 pm

If you go with a larger shellie species the shells are going to need to be spread out, multis do beter with them in a pile, but they are about the only exception IME. I would also remove all the other shells other than the escargot, just replace them with more escargot :). If you are going with only 1 rock spawner(ill lump clavs in with these for the sake of ease) I would move the rock work to the middle (ish) of the tank and surround it with shells, that way you get a line of sight barrier between mating pairs. I also think 29 is way to small for Altos (long term) and the multis can be eaten by the Altos (if-it-fits-in-the-bigger-fish's-mouth rule).

I am currently keeping 3 calvs with 6 multis in a 20L, only until they are big enough to handle them selves in my main display against 2 spawning fish (J.marlieri and L.Ornatipinnis). I have 2 rocks in a 'triangle' shape on one side of the tank and about 36 shells covering the rest of the floor. The rocks/open area take up about 8-10" on one side and the other 20" goes to the multis. It works well but the comps are only 2", so I have no idea how long it will last long term.
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby Ptyochromis » Sun May 27, 2012 4:11 pm

Cajen wrote:Please, those of you with Tanganyika tank experience, should I add more rock work, fake plants (yuk), silk plants.... More separation between shells and rock. Anything at all?


I use 100% rock in all my tang tanks, natural caves are best, the only plants are mounted java fern/floating java moss. The java moss is more trouble than it is worth as it just get buried. Green algae is your friend especially with Julidochromis and Tropheus.
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby Cajen » Sun May 27, 2012 5:57 pm

Thanks for the input. Deeda, you asked about is that driftwood on the rock pile on the right? No, that is a really neat piece of lace rock :) there is a driftwood "tree" of sorts on the left amongst the shells. So, it seems the general thought is that the rock pile on the right is too much like what Mbuna would want and I need to "tighten it up a bit" for the Calvus. I know that eventually the Calvus may outgrow the 29g but I should be good for 2 years at the rate they grow, right? :D

Pile the shells higher on the left, find a way to move the piece of lace rock (that resembles driftwood) to the middle for line of sight break between Calvus and Multies and create tighter rock work on the right for Calvus? Does that seem to be the consensus?

Love love love this forum - you guys and gals are great and so much experience to share!

Thanks again.
:fish:
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby Cajen » Sun May 27, 2012 5:59 pm

Oh, one more related question... It seems a lot of folks use large shells for Calvus instead of (or maybe in addition to) rocks. Thoughts there?
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby 24Tropheus » Sun May 27, 2012 6:15 pm

A pair of Altolamprologus Calvus (Black Inkfin) or Altolamprologus Compressicep Red Lufubu from a bunch of 6-8 juveniles is a big ask from a regular 29g unless willing or able to move em on to a bigger tank to pair and then move em back to this smaller tank. If this is your first tang tank I would be tempted to recomend a smaller easier species like Altolamprologus sp. "Compressiceps Shell".

Sorry to burst your bubble but it aint going to work.
Tanks 180, empty revamping 100,65,60g Tropheus/tang communities 75g revamping. 29gx3 shelly communities, 29g Trigs breeding. 20gx2 shelly tanks. BCA member 207. Try it you might like it.
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby Ptyochromis » Sun May 27, 2012 6:20 pm

I dounno about tighter, you want to create line of sight barriers. Places where the fish can go to not be seen, like walls that divide the tank. Fish sometimes like to hide where they can feel the walls on either side of them, I would tighten it up. I would also take out the wood, you don't want any tannins possibly bringing down your PH, although you should have enough buffer for this not to change the PH. I know comps will spawn in either caves or in shells, depending on the region. There is a shell dwelling variety(sumbu), but I wouldn't mix them with other shellies.

If you are set on Altolamprologus, I would go with compressiceps, calvus are near threatened in the wild.

http://www.iucnredlist.org/apps/redlist/details/60455/0
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby 24Tropheus » Sun May 27, 2012 6:31 pm

Sorry but that link gives no indication any calvus variant are threatened in the wild (far far to dangerous to fish em from the Congo to threaten em :lol: ) I agree TB small comps like Altolamprologus sp. "Compressiceps Shell" would be better in the this tank though. :thumb:
Tanks 180, empty revamping 100,65,60g Tropheus/tang communities 75g revamping. 29gx3 shelly communities, 29g Trigs breeding. 20gx2 shelly tanks. BCA member 207. Try it you might like it.
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby Cajen » Sun May 27, 2012 8:23 pm

Altolamprologus sp. "Compressiceps Shell" is this the same as Altolamprologus Compressiceps Sumbu Dwarf

24tropheus, I have reAd hundreds of your posts and totally respect your opinion... So the Calvus is out :( :( :( If I go with the A. Comp. Sumbu Dwarf .. That is also a shell dweller. Will that be a problem with Multies? If so, open for suggestions?
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby Cajen » Sun May 27, 2012 9:06 pm

I found my answer on the Compressiceps Shell and Sumbu Dwarf... They are not the same but similar size and habits.

Now I am totally from scratch... I tried to rely on cookie cutter but it seems not to be true. I have rearranged my tank, piled up the escargot shells moved the big piece of lace rock to the center (basically) and have made tighter caves on the right. Will post pic if anyone wants...

So sad tho about no Calvus... Do not think I can do Multies and Altolamp Compressiceps Sumbu since they are both shell dwellers... Maybe I am wrong?

I am SO in NEED of suggestions now.
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Re: is this set up suitable

Postby 24Tropheus » Sun May 27, 2012 9:34 pm

It is true shell dwelling small comps will predate on shelly young but that does not meen you can not keep them both in the same tank. Due to size diffence they do not compeate for the same shells if you go small for the multies and larger for the shell breeding comps.
It is only a 29g so long term you may be best with two small species like Paracyps and multies. (that worked fine for me) But if you realy like the sumbu dwarf pretty sure someone can come up with a 29g set up that they could share with another species. I would guess Paracyps would be fine but have not tried that myself.
Tanks 180, empty revamping 100,65,60g Tropheus/tang communities 75g revamping. 29gx3 shelly communities, 29g Trigs breeding. 20gx2 shelly tanks. BCA member 207. Try it you might like it.
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