Aquarium Setup • Made A Mistake

New to the world of cichlids? For discussion on how to set up new tanks, including placement, filtration, substrates, water, etc. No stocking discussions here.

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Made A Mistake

Postby Toby3001 » Sat Jun 06, 2020 10:43 pm

Hi!

I am a newbie when it comes to Cichlids, but I am getting the hang of it. I made the mistake of impulse buying peacocks, mbunas, and frontosas. All of them are healthy and in top condition, but I realized it is best to stick with a specific lake instead of mixing.

If anyone is interested in 2 peacocks or 2 beautiful young frontosas please let me know.

Or is there any way I can sell these beautiful fish to people who are interested? If so, where? I am desperate to give them good homes!
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Re: Made A Mistake

Postby cyclonecichlids » Sun Jun 07, 2020 1:07 am

Have you tried calling your local fish store and trading them in for store credit?
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Re: Made A Mistake

Postby Ichthys » Sun Jun 07, 2020 5:45 am

It’s not about sticking to one lake, but one type of food preference. Peacocks and Frontosa are carnivores. Mbuna are herbivores that will get bloat if fed too much protein.
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Re: Made A Mistake

Postby DJRansome » Sun Jun 07, 2020 9:16 am

You could post a selling ad in the Cichlid-forum Classifieds. But what I most often do is trade in my fish for store credit (if the store will agree) or donate/sell at an auction or local hobbyist.
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Re: Made A Mistake

Postby BC in SK » Sun Jun 07, 2020 10:25 am

Ichthys wrote:It’s not about sticking to one lake, but one type of food preference. Peacocks and Frontosa are carnivores. Mbuna are herbivores that will get bloat if fed too much protein.

First of all, not all mbuna are herbivores. Many are considered omnivores, such as yellow labs. And those that feed on aufwuchs (biofilm that is predominantly algae including cyanobacteria) also get some animal matter from this biofilm, that can be a very significant part of their nutrition. Some mbuna are fairly carnivorous; example chipokae which also feed on mbuna fry.
That protein causes bloat is a big myth.https://www.monsterfishkeepers.com/forums/threads/bloat-causes-cures-and-big-myths.456034/. % of protein of a pellet/flake as having anything to do with chance of bloat is also part of this big myth. If anything in a diet is suspect, it's terrestrial grains, which all pellets/flakes have in significant quantities (around 25% minimum or more) as it is needed to bind the mixture together into a flake or pellet. But really, bloat has to do with stress; primarily water quality and aggression which is often quite extreme in groups of mbuna . Excessive chasing and fish having to hide rather then be out and about above the decor. In over 4 decades of keeping at least a few mbuna, I've never had a case of bloat in Malawi cichlids, ever. In the past, I've gone periods of over 4 months feeding nothing but chopped frozen fish. No case of bloat, just fast growth. I've fed a higher protein diet then most aquarists, always choosing pellets with the higher protein and fat contents, as well as feeding some frozen chopped fish, shrimp, seafood, and at times making my own fish food held together by gelatin (or agar if it includes spirulina). Mbuna food requirements are not significantly different in captivity, then other fish. They are not able to graze all day and eat the large volume of algae that becomes fish waste, to a large extent. It is not practical to feed fish predominantly vegetable matter in an aquarium, as it is not efficiently utilized and more will end up as fish waste. Most fish (including mbuna) do not utilize large amounts of carbohydrate. Protein and fat is where it is at, even for energy requirements and respiration, and that is why it is listed on the fish food container as minimums. Mbuna eat a much "richer" diet in captivity. Now, too much of a good thing might lead to health problems at older age (??) but even pellets like NLS algaemax has a significant amount of animal protein as it is needed for a healthy aquarium diet.
So, I don't agree, diet is not the issue with mixing these fish. Aggression is. Mbuna are really aggressive cichlids. They can stress peacocks, and they can stress frontosa not only from aggression, but from their boisternous and constant activity. Many aquarists have successfully mixed these cichlids, but generally it is in very large tanks (6 ft. plus) and with a fair amount of experience with how to succeed with this kind of a mix. IME, in the past, peacocks did not fare well in my cichlid tanks primarily because of mbuna. I currently have a sunshine peacock that has done well, most of the time, kept always with some mbuna, but he is an exception, one of these very aggressive alpha males that pretty much any cichlid species/strain will sometimes have, but not typical of the species/strain at all.
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Re: Made A Mistake

Postby DJRansome » Sun Jun 07, 2020 10:45 am

BC in SK wrote: too much of a good thing might lead to health problems at older age (??) but even pellets like NLS algaemax has a significant amount of animal protein as it is needed for a healthy aquarium diet.
So, I don't agree, diet is not the issue with mixing these fish. Aggression is. Mbuna are really aggressive cichlids. They can stress peacocks, and they can stress frontosa not only from aggression, but from their boisternous and constant activity. Many aquarists have successfully mixed these cichlids, but generally it is in very large tanks (6 ft. plus) and with a fair amount of experience with how to succeed with this kind of a mix. IME, in the past, peacocks did not fare well in my cichlid tanks primarily because of mbuna. I currently have a sunshine peacock that has done well, most of the time, kept always with some mbuna, but he is an exception, one of these very aggressive alpha males that pretty much any cichlid species/strain will sometimes have, but not typical of the species/strain at all.
Plus one.

I have also tried lake mixes and been unhappy with the result. So keeping the lakes separate is more often successful than mixing them. And as BC stated, even within a lake, different aggression levels may not make good tank mates.

I do feed all my African Rift Lake cichlids NLS Cichlid Formula 1mm sinking pellets (or the Northfin equivalent) whether herbivore, omnivore or carnivore.
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