General African Cichlid Discussion • Can I Mix Tiger Barbs with African Cichlids in a 20g tank ?

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Can I Mix Tiger Barbs with African Cichlids in a 20g tank ?

Postby lizziewine » Sun Sep 12, 2010 12:35 pm

Hi ... Am new to this but we housed the following in a 20-gallon tank ... we're beginners so we didnt realise that we needed a larger tank and space is a concern .... we now have in the tank:

1 x Demasoni
2 x Electric Yellows
1 x Orange Lab
2 x Unidentified Black and White vertical striped Cichlids (Anyone can help me id this? )
2 x Plecos
2 x Dark Green Moss Tiger Barbs ( just newly identified - thanks! )

How to reduce aggression levels overall in a 20 gallon tank?? Can the bioload levels take it in a 20g tank?

Can we add more Tiger Barbs to keep them less aggressive as they are nipping and fighting with each other now??

Cheers and thanks lots!! :fish:
Lisa
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Postby Kerricko » Sun Sep 12, 2010 12:44 pm

I don't think adding fish is going to help it will probably just make things worse. Best bet is to upgrade to a bigger tank.
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Postby soulpride » Sun Sep 12, 2010 1:41 pm

wow get a big tank asap. a 55 gallon would be a start. once the Demasoni get use to it new home it still start the hunting and kill everything in a 20 gallon tank. for bioload you are way over stocked and aggression either get a 55g + or sell or return cichlid to the lfs. for the black and white are the frontosa that come to my mind. here a link if they look like that.

http://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/c_frontosa.php

here a link to the species page

http://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/s ... ofiles.php
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Postby cjacob316 » Sun Sep 12, 2010 6:11 pm

soulpride wrote:wow get a big tank asap. a 55 gallon would be a start. once the Demasoni get use to it new home it still start the hunting and kill everything in a 20 gallon tank.


that's a pretty incorrect statement, dems do not "hunt down" other fish, demasoni are very aggressive towards their own kind, and males barely tolerate each other, so they bully each other and stress each other out until basically they get sick (usually from bloat) and die.

dems are hardly as aggressive towards other species as they are towards each other


to the op, a 20 gallon simply is not a big enough tank for these fish, you should really get some pics of the "orange lab" and black a white striped one to get them properly id'd, but generally speaking a 55 gallon (48x13) is minimum for mixed malawi
see my tanks for details
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Thanks for all the help ... appreciate it!!

Postby lizziewine » Sun Sep 12, 2010 11:18 pm

My husband is super resistant to get bigger tank cos we live in a small apartment and we have only space enough for a 20g tank ...

My husband wants to leave it be ... sigh ... we only got started cos our son came home with a bag of fishes from a local fish farm ...
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Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 7:53 am
Location: Singapore

My 20g tank ....

Postby lizziewine » Sun Sep 12, 2010 11:28 pm

http://picasaweb.google.com/10207607752 ... rCichlids#

Here's a pic of my daughter standing next to the 20g tank I have ... like I said earlier, my hubby ain't getting a bigger tank and having all those cichlids and the two tiger barb in there is crowded for a mixed African tank ... but what can I do? :-(

Tried to hopefully make it better with more rocks and hiding spaces for the fishes ...
:-?
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Postby TexasFishGuy » Mon Sep 13, 2010 10:31 am

Tiger Barbs should be kept in a group of at least 5...they are a schooling fish.
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Postby bernie comeau » Mon Sep 13, 2010 11:30 am

Keep the demasoni. They are small for an mbuna. They don't get very big ----your 20 gal is big enough for one. Just don't get any more of them as they are highly aggressive towards their own kind. When kept with their own kind they usually need to be kept in large groups of 12 or more ----which you definately do not have the space for.

Keep your tiger barbs, but get at least another 4 or more.

Get rid of your so called orange lab ( Red zebra, Metriaclima estherae). A little too big and aggressive for a 20 gal.

Get rid of your black and white striped fish (Frontosa). They get way too big for a 20 gal. and especially at a young age, they are likely to get severely harrassed by mbuna in a 20 gal.

Probably best to get rid of your yellow labs, as well, as they will probably get a little too big for a 20 gal. But for an mbuna, they are not usually too aggressive. Try them for a while, if you want, and see how it works out.

Plecos, if they are the common type, will end up getting much too large for a 20 gal. Get rid of them. Trade them if you can, but get rid of them. Get a bristle nose pleco and/or a Chinese Algae Eater (CAE). These are much smaller fish that are very unlikely to outgrow your tank.

By the way, why isn't your tank filled up to the top? Space is space, and even the upper area is still very useable space for your fish. A 20 gal., 3/4 full, is really only a 15 gal. :lol:
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Thanks!!

Postby lizziewine » Tue Sep 14, 2010 12:56 am

Hey Bernie and Texasfishguy: Thanks for suggestions ... will try to psych my hubby to do something about it .... I figured we may have to add more tiger barbs in ... does it matter if male or female tiger barbs i add in? We dunno how to tell males from females and fishshop guy won't know either to tell us which is which ...

CHeers and thanks!
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Postby soulpride » Tue Sep 14, 2010 1:30 am

tiger barb is hard to tell male from female at a young age. one way is female are more rounder then male when they reach maturity. the female will be full of eggs the stomach area that the only way i can tell or when they breed.
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Thanks Soulpride!

Postby lizziewine » Tue Sep 14, 2010 2:51 am

Thanks for info ... will try to look carefully when selecting more tiger barbs for our tank

Cheers! :fish:
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Postby torin32 » Thu Sep 16, 2010 1:07 pm

Not to mention they like neutral ph water and there diferent eating habits. No african should be kept for long periods of time in a 20 or 30g tank unless your doing shell dwellers in a 30 g. Your barbs will just get killed.
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Postby lizziewine » Thu Sep 16, 2010 1:25 pm

Thanks lots! I hear ya ... now need to find a way to psych my hubby to upsize the tank :-p
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