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Discussion regarding only Lake Tanganyika species.
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Whats your experience with large julies and shell dwellers

Sun Aug 07, 2011 4:26 pm


Julidochromis marlieri seems to be readily avaliable to me and for a much cheaper price than the other smaller species. I know they come with a warning label when mixing them with shell dwellers, but have you guys experienced any incidents? Are they as bad as Leleuipi? I have only kept the smaller julidochromis.

I'm planning on setting up a 48x12x12 tank with julies and multis for sure. Not sure what else I would add if anything. Thoughts on what else you would add?

Thank you,

Sun Aug 07, 2011 5:45 pm

They aren't quite as bad as leleupi... but still hasn't worked out well in my experience.... exceptions being Lepidiolamprologus shellies and Telmatochromis sp. shell, which normally should do fine with the Julidochromis. Actually, my Telmatochromis sp. shell kept the wild regani Nsumbu's I had well under control.

Mon Aug 08, 2011 9:57 am

If I decide to try it then what are some ways I can increase my chances for success? Do you think increasing the number of multi's would afford the females some protection? I will be getting the multi's as adults and the julies as juveniles, so I'm hoping that will help too.

I asked Pam Chin and she stated that the julies are not a predator like leluepi and they do not actively hunt. Of course anything could happen when you are talking about a 5" fish interacting with a 1-2" fish.

Mon Aug 08, 2011 10:13 am

Any and all cichlids actively hunt for food, are opportunistic and will eat whatever they can, including fry. Sure they aren't as predatory as leleupi as I've stated already, but they will eat what they can.

If you ad in the Julidochromis, after the multi's are established and breeding as a large colony you stand a better chance.

Mon Aug 08, 2011 11:28 am

Even small julies will go into shells looking for snacks. The difference is that they won't try to drag adult shellies out.

My strategy for protecting multies might work for larger predators- stack the shells. Females always choose the shells on the bottom layer. This means getting at least 50 shells for the colony, and periodically grabbing the buried shells and putting them back on top. A secondary advantage of this arrangement is food availability for growing multies- if you can get food to drift into the shellbed, the young fish won't have much reason to swim out into the open.

If you can pile the shells such that the julies can't get into the bottom shells, you might not have too many issues. But watch as the julies grow out- if you are seeing tail damage on your female multies, there's a problem. I haven't tried this strategy for similis, and I don't think it would work for the harem shellies.

Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:39 pm

I'm going to heed your advice FogelHund and Triscuit, you have never steered me wrong before :thumb: . I will keep looking for smaller species.

If I can find something like transcriptus or ornatus is it plausible to shoot for more than one pair to go alongside the multis? Maybe a rock pile on each end of the tank and multi's in the middle?

Tue Aug 09, 2011 1:20 am

I had a female(i think) marlieri burundi in with some brevis a while back, and she had a female brevis by the tail, pulling her out of the shell to be able to eat eggs. I quickly scared the julie away from the shell, and moved it to another tank.

Wed Aug 10, 2011 10:03 am

My Julidochromis marlieri Burundi are about 18 months old as are my Lamprologus melegrise. The Julies have yet to show any interest in the shellies, but the shellies are not breading either. Maybe once they have fry the Julis will take noticed. I have 2 mating pairs of Julis. Each has it's own rock pile at opposite ends of the 55g tank with the Lamprologus melegrise in the middle. Also in the tank are a school of cyps and some Altolamprologus calvus Black Zambian
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