Lake Malawi Species • Mbunas or Peacocks?

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Mbunas or Peacocks?

Postby SanDiegoCichlid619 » Wed Jan 27, 2010 10:44 pm

I need your guys help. I will setting up 125 gal tank soon and don't know what to go with, I love the peacocks colors and how they don't stay in the rocks all the time like the mbunas, but dealing with prices of peacocks it will be much easier to stock a mbuna tank. Don't get me wrong mbuna also have fantastic colors but I don't like the agression and amount of cover they need. Plz help
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Postby DJRansome » Wed Jan 27, 2010 11:12 pm

If you are going all male I would do peacocks and probably some haps. If you are going mixed breeding groups, I would do mbuna. Although you want a lot of rocks with mbuna, they don't stay in the rocks much.

You could buy the peacocks as juveniles, then they would be no more expensive than mbuna I think.

Sounds like you really want the peacocks, go for it!
125G Aulonocara, Malawi Haps, Vics (trial), S Polli
75G Demasoni, Labs, Cyno hara, Met estherae, S Multipunctata
75G Calvus, Caudopunctatus, Cyp Kerenge, S Petricola
33G Neo omnicaeruleus; 33G Flameback Kisumu; 33G P nyererei Igombe; 33G Hap ruby green
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Postby noki » Wed Jan 27, 2010 11:54 pm

Mbuna don't really hide in the rocks all the time, if you are thinking that. In a well set up tank Mbuna are about as active as any very active fish tank.
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Postby csnake » Thu Jan 28, 2010 2:44 am

I've kept them both, and while I find the aulonocara colors to be the more striking, I enjoy mbuna much much more. Mbuna seem to me to have much more personality and character... some even have little "Monk"-ish quirks. They're more fun. The peacocks/haps on the other hand were more... well, just color... almost lazy and rather boring I guess. This is just my opinion. I'm sure others would disagree... maybe?
125 g: Ps. elongatus Chailosi, Met. Msobo, Albino Socolofi, Albino OB Red Zebra, Cyno sp. Hara
75 g: Yellow Labs, Demasoni, O. Lithobates
2 x 40 g: juvies
4 x 10 g: fry
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Postby scdeb424 » Fri Jan 29, 2010 1:29 am

Mbuna remind me of dogs--they beg for food, run around the yard, wag their tails, get mouthy with each other & fight for your attention when you come over to the tank.
Peacocks are like cats--aloof, beautiful but not exactly friendly. Every once in awhile you think they like you but then they swim off just like a cat that ignores you when you call its name.
I'm more of a dog person--and a Mbuna person.
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Postby GoofBoy » Fri Jan 29, 2010 2:08 am

I've kept Africans a long time - since the late 80's - I went to the all male Hap/Peacock tank last July for the first time - love it - still don't know what took me so long...

I love the look of mbuna tanks but I find them too stressful - I just don't like the level of aggression.

I'll disagree strongly with the lack of interaction/personality from Haps - but maybe I just got lucky with all of them I have kept over the years.

I believe it really comes down to how much aggression is acceptable to you and only you can answer that.

Get what you really want - because in 6-9 months you will go for it anyway. Based on personal experience - more than once.

I would think in SoCal you should be able to hook up with plenty of breeders if you look at clubs etc.

Good Luck.
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Postby GaFishMan1181 » Fri Jan 29, 2010 9:28 am

Mbuna for the win!

IF you went peacock/hap you would have to go all male. With mbuna you could easily have 5-6 breeding groups. There are so many choices that you could get some really nice shapes and colors going on. From my experience if you pick the right type of mbuna and keep correct ratios then aggression is only a minor problem. Most of my mbuna will only pick on their own type and its never that serious.
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Postby scdeb424 » Fri Jan 29, 2010 9:06 pm

I agree with GaFishMan1181--Mumba are entertaining & best all around.
But if you have your heart set on Peacocks & Haps you should go for it
because you will most likely keep thinking that you missed out. There are
some great fish in the profiles section--sometimes I find myself wondering
just how I'd stock a new 125 with peacocks & haps. Take your time, decide
on a selection with some second string choices & see what happens--Good
Luck & let us know what happens.
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Postby SanDiegoCichlid619 » Sat May 15, 2010 1:33 am

Thanks you guys, sorry it took me this long to update you. I didn't think anybody had responded to my post because I thought I would get a email. Lol, after reading all the post I think I will go with the peacock/hap setup. I got hooked when seen a Thickskin hap! My only qestion is why does it have to be all male tank with the peacocks? Seems like a long process taking the fact I will be buying all Juvenile fish...
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Postby DJRansome » Sat May 15, 2010 7:52 am

Peacocks crossbreed. So if you don't go all male, you get a species tank with one colored fish and 25 brown ones, LOL.

Haps crossbreed as well but there are some fishkeepers experimenting with more than one breeding group in a tank of certain very different haps.
125G Aulonocara, Malawi Haps, Vics (trial), S Polli
75G Demasoni, Labs, Cyno hara, Met estherae, S Multipunctata
75G Calvus, Caudopunctatus, Cyp Kerenge, S Petricola
33G Neo omnicaeruleus; 33G Flameback Kisumu; 33G P nyererei Igombe; 33G Hap ruby green
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Postby SanDiegoCichlid619 » Sat May 15, 2010 10:55 am

Wow I never knew that, so how would I go about excluding the females? Take the fish out that lose color? Or just buy older fish? Head scrather.
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Postby DJRansome » Sat May 15, 2010 11:07 am

Either strategy can work. Buying juveniles and keeping the best colored one is suggested in the article on all male tanks in the Library. For compatibility and keeping expenses down. Longer wait for results though.

Buying young adults is more expensive and they have to try to adjust to each other but you get quicker results.

Either way an all male tank is an experiment and compatability changes so have extra tanks and a resource (LFS?) that will take your reject fish.
125G Aulonocara, Malawi Haps, Vics (trial), S Polli
75G Demasoni, Labs, Cyno hara, Met estherae, S Multipunctata
75G Calvus, Caudopunctatus, Cyp Kerenge, S Petricola
33G Neo omnicaeruleus; 33G Flameback Kisumu; 33G P nyererei Igombe; 33G Hap ruby green
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Postby jaybuc » Mon May 17, 2010 4:10 pm

csnake wrote:I've kept them both, and while I find the aulonocara colors to be the more striking, I enjoy mbuna much much more. Mbuna seem to me to have much more personality and character... some even have little "Monk"-ish quirks. They're more fun. The peacocks/haps on the other hand were more... well, just color... almost lazy and rather boring I guess. This is just my opinion. I'm sure others would disagree... maybe?


Agree...I've kept both in my 125g, I prefer mbuna myself, mbuna tend to be more active IMO. Just get another tank and do both! :thumb:
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Postby bearded lab » Mon May 17, 2010 4:23 pm

Love the reference to "Monk"-ish quirks! It's a good analogy.
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Postby SanDiegoCichlid619 » Mon May 17, 2010 6:11 pm

Haha, I wish could have another big tank but we all know this hobie is very expensive plus I think my wife will kill me! Lol. I think I'm sticking with peacocks I like how I can have the peacocks and throw in a couple fronts, calvus, haps, plus if I wanted I can throw in some mbuna yellow labs. Witch I probly will...And I think you can put rusties in there also right? Now I just need find were I can find some really cheap lace rock.
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