General Aquaria Discussion • This is for the "Fish Rebels"

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This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby krazykilroy » Thu Jun 23, 2016 5:56 pm

So who here is doing things that aren't on the scale as "acceptable", and have no issues?

Like Water changing every half a year (exaggerating.....Kinda..), or putting the wrong kind of fish together, and having great results?

Who here has heard the "it can't be done", then went ahead and DID IT??!?
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby fmueller » Mon Jun 27, 2016 9:11 am

Most people on this site go out of their way to provide the best possible conditions for their fish. I would not occur to them to experiment to see how far they can stray from the ideal and get away with it.

A typical example for the occasional dude who tries to do the latter is the guy who puts a gazillion incompatible fish in a tank that's too small, and reports success after a couple of months. It usually turns out the fish are juveniles, and it is not surprising to more experienced people that you can grow out these baby fish together in a tank that's far smaller than what the adults require. The trouble starts when the fish mature and begin to stake out territories. That's when the fish die and the rebels leave the hobby without posting a final report of their failure.

Those too lazy to do water changes tend to share their fate.

There is nothing wrong with a bit of experimentation to keep the hobby interesting. Many experienced people try to push the limits a little when there isn't enough tank space, or they want to accommodate yet another species, but the rebel approach to fish keeping is not usually rewarded with long term success.

Just my 2c :D
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby black and blue » Mon Jun 27, 2016 7:57 pm

I enjoy the forum for what it is, a place to talk about Cichlids with like minded people that I wouldn't normally be able to because I don't know alot of people that are in the same hobby. The level of enjoyment I have come to find from my tank brings certain responsibilities just like taking care of other pets. You wouldn't put an angry pitbull with a passive lap dog just to prove a point at the demise of the smaller dog. It's your prerogative really. Good luck sir but me personally I want my fish to have the best I can provide given knowledge and money I can provide. Sounds cheesy ha I'm not a fish elitist just enjoy doing it "the right way".
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby krazykilroy » Tue Jun 28, 2016 4:00 pm

I totally understand and agree... to an extent.

Because at a certain point, if everyone was to listen to "you can't sail that far, you'll fall off the earth, because the earth is flat...", we would never have gone anywhere. Or learned anything.

So then the tone becomes "This can't be done", into "How CAN it be done?" How Can you house Africans from different lakes together? How CAN you put Africans with New worlds? How do you adjust the water to take care of everything? things of that nature.

I realize that this hobby means a LOT to most of you here, and that following things "to the letter of the law" is EVERYTHING to many of you. But just like that hybrid post, eventually some people venture from what is seen as the 'norm'...
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby black and blue » Tue Jun 28, 2016 5:36 pm

I agree with you completely but I think your going out on a limb for no other reason than to see how far you can go not to be adventurous. I am by no means an inside the box person. My fish are about the only thing I do in my life right now that I try to stick to some kind of limit or parameter because the fish not because of other people saying that's how it should be. Hope you don't take this communication the wrong way I love people that do things off the beaten path.
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby fmueller » Wed Jun 29, 2016 4:13 am

krazykilroy wrote:How Can you house Africans from different lakes together? How CAN you put Africans with New worlds? How do you adjust the water to take care of everything? things of that nature.


You can house Africans from different lakes together quite easily. You can also put Africans with New World cichlids without too much trouble. That's because most cichlids do just fine with regular tap water without any need for altering water parameters - as long as the water quality is up to snuff!

Personally I don't like to mix lakes or continents, because I like to give my tanks what I think of as a 'natural look', and seeing fish from different habitats together disturbs my sense of aesthetics. On the other hand, if somebody wants to mix, I see no good reason why they shouldn't, if that is what takes their fancy. I wouldn't call them a 'rebel' for doing it though, because there really isn't much too it.

What's more important than origin when choosing which fish to house together are factors like diet and temperament. Take Tropheus and Mbuna for example, they are from different lakes, but they occupy the same ecological niche. I have never tried for the above mentioned aesthetic reasons, but I bet you in a large tank like a 125G upwards, a colony of tropheus could easily be housed with a colony of M. auratus, and they would get along just fine even long term. On the other hand fish like frontosa will make poor tank mates for tropheus even though they are from the same lake. That's because they have different dietary requirements and frontosa are very docile fish that will be stressed out by the hyperactive mbuna. You might be able to keep them together for a while, but we all know that both the tropheus and the frontosa would be better off if kept by themselves or with more suitable tank mates.

Coming back to the natural look, I mostly keep rift lake cichlids in planted tanks, and for many folks that just doesn't go together at all. For me it does, and the plants help me with things like combating algae, keeping down nitrate, and providing hiding spaces and micro food for fry. So maybe I am a 'rebel', but from your first post I took that to mean somebody who takes an unscientific approach to fish keeping - ignore water quality and combine incompatible fish. Again, fish of different origin might well be compatible, or they might not be, due to temperament and diet. Experimentation to advance the frontier of scientific discovery is of course encouraged, but you might find that fish keeping is not rocket science, and often there is no need to re-invent the wheel or jeopardize your fish by conducting your own experiments. A lot can be learned by reading about the failures and successes of other people, which is what this site is all about :D
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby Als49 » Wed Jun 29, 2016 7:15 am

krazykilroy wrote:How Can you house Africans from different lakes together? How CAN you put Africans with New worlds? How do you adjust the water to take care of everything? things of that nature.


I mixed fish sometimes :D Farmed-raised fish, that was.
I kept geophagus RHT with Congo tetra. Leleupi and julies with demasoni.
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby krazykilroy » Wed Jun 29, 2016 7:55 am

black and blue wrote:I agree with you completely but I think your going out on a limb for no other reason than to see how far you can go not to be adventurous. I am by no means an inside the box person. My fish are about the only thing I do in my life right now that I try to stick to some kind of limit or parameter because the fish not because of other people saying that's how it should be. Hope you don't take this communication the wrong way I love people that do things off the beaten path.


Now mind you, I haven't done anything yet. I have my 3 tanks, that I am trying to set up, and I want to get an idea what can be done, and what can't. and what can be tested.

I'm not in the process of have large-scale fish bowls, but I'm not in the market to have my things look like everyone else's, because I MUST do the very same thing as everyone else.
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby fmueller » Wed Jun 29, 2016 8:58 am

krazykilroy wrote:Now mind you, I haven't done anything yet. I have my 3 tanks, that I am trying to set up, and I want to get an idea what can be done, and what can't. and what can be tested.

I'm not in the process of have large-scale fish bowls, but I'm not in the market to have my things look like everyone else's, because I MUST do the very same thing as everyone else.


With three tanks you are in pretty good shape to do some experimentation. If something goes wrong, you have some options to move stuff around. I've known people with several hundred tanks spread out through the house, garage and basement. Those are the folks who can go out on a limb! Personally, I've never had more than about 10 tanks at a time, and only 3 of those were over 29G. But I used to have some tanks to grow out fry, or to isolate a fish that wasn't doing well. Plus I used to belong to several fish clubs, all very active and in convenient driving distance. If I couldn't keep a fish, I could move it to a good home within short notice. Plus I could get some fairly exotic stock for little money.

Now that I live in NZ with few fish available, and not much club activity going on, I'll need to be a bit more careful. I guess that, and the fact that - like you - I want to do something different, are the reasons I still have not set up a tank here.

What kind of fish are you interested in and what tanks do you have? If I was still in the US, I'd know what to do. That is, I have several plans for tanks that I'd like to try, and that I have not seen like that in other people's places. Problem is, here I can't get the fish I really want.
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby krazykilroy » Tue Jul 05, 2016 5:15 pm

So I want to use a thread that is currently being populated in these forums...

This couple purchased an ALREADY ESTABLISHED fish tank, and now they are having issues and 2 fish died, with more possibly on the way. She found out that there were 16+ fish in this African cichlid set up, but two of them were Jack Dempseys! LOL!! Now she removed the previous filters on the tank, so that she could use personal fluval filters, and there were some water issues.

However, out of ALL of the parameters that changed, everyone looked at the parameter that did NOT change! Those Dempseys were purchased along with the other 14+ Africans, and NOW all of a sudden they become the issue? It wasn't an aggression issue. As they had been together BEFORE the transfer. It wasn't a pH issue, as they used the same water, and the previous owner either had the Dempseys living in African pH conditions, the Africans living in South American pH conditions, or both living at "straight out of the tap" conditions at a pH of around 7.

But it was "get those Dempseys out of there!!". Like all of a sudden, the JD's decided to go postal on some Africans.

too much "it can't be done", and not enough, "how CAN it be done"
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby DJRansome » Tue Jul 05, 2016 6:14 pm

Many things can be done and I've tried some of them. Most of the time I have not liked the results...much as was predicted by the fishkeepers advising me, who have much more experience than I. Sometimes the fish survive but not thrive. Try the mix, but also try the same fish in a species tank or a community designed for it. I'll bet you see the difference.

Some examples I have tried:
Calvus with Malawi
Leleupi with Malawi
Trets with Malawi
Leleupi and shellies
Less than 12 demasoni
Nyererei with Malawi...all male
Nyererei with Malawi mixed gender
Flameback with Malawi

Currently I'm trying jewels with Malawi. Not great results so far, but I've tried them in 3 different tanks (sizes and stocking) so far and have not given up yet.
125G Borleyi, Multipunctata
75G Demasoni, Msobo, Lucipinnis
75G Calvus, Similis, Petricola
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby fmueller » Tue Jul 05, 2016 7:11 pm

krazykilroy wrote:However, out of ALL of the parameters that changed, everyone looked at the parameter that did NOT change! Those Dempseys were purchased along with the other 14+ Africans, and NOW all of a sudden they become the issue?


I agree with you that there are possible water quality issues considering changes in tank as well as filtration. But if you start with an established tank, taking substrate and decorations, and/or filter material with you, that all should be manageable. With the little information I have, I would say this is most likely yet another case of juvenile fish growing out together, and the $#!+ hitting the fan when some of them reach maturity.

Jack Dempseys are large pair-bonding fish. When they want to breed, a pair of Jack Dempseys will stake out a territory far larger than any tank typically found in a home environment. In nature, when they want to breed, they set up shop at a chosen site and chase all other fish out of the area. No big deal! In a tank, they might decide to breed one night and then they can kill each and every other inhabitant of the tank - unless you come in and move them, which is part of your job as responsible fish keeper if you keep aggressive, pair-bonding Central Americans. I always cringe when we call fish 'aggressive', it's just part of their natural behavior of being territorial. But there is nobody who has kept Central Americans who has not come to a tank in the morning with everybody dead except for one happy pair and a clutch of eggs they are guarding. I know a lot of people who like that challenge. Personally I don't, and I usually keep Africans.

Now in actual case in question, we don't know if the two JDs are a pair, and they probably don't know yet themselves. I reckon they just stepped up things a little because the hormones started flowing! This is often triggered by a change in the environment, like the move to another tank, or a change in water parameters.

At any rate Jack Dempseys did not get their name for nothing!

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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby DJRansome » Tue Jul 05, 2016 7:35 pm

New info...previous owner had the tank for six months and got bored. It's 48x12 and includes Nimbochromis, crabro and more.
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby BC in SK » Sun Jul 10, 2016 2:49 pm

fmueller wrote: But there is nobody who has kept Central Americans who has not come to a tank in the morning with everybody dead except for one happy pair and a clutch of eggs they are guarding.

I think this is an extreme over statement. It's just one of many possibilities with any substrate spawner, dependant on a whole range of variables/factors.
Nothing even close has ever happened in my tanks. Nor do I personally know of anyone who has had this happen.
Bred JD's in the cichlid community tank many times. And I have bred much more aggressive substrate spawners in the cichlid community tank many, many times. No casualties. There is always some sort of compromise over space when fish are kept in the limited space of an aquarium.
I suppose there is greater chance of this sort of thing happening to some one new to the hobby, with out having any real sense of what is happening in the tank, but it's certainly not a given even for the inexperienced.
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Re: This is for the "Fish Rebels"

Postby CeeJay » Thu Sep 01, 2016 10:01 am

I'm really cramp for tank space right now. I use quarantine tanks for new purchase and right now have rummy nose tetras with some peacock fry. The rummy nose have another two weeks before they go to there home tank. This tank has a ph of 6.8 and is full of plants. The peacocks don't seem to notice that the water is not hard or high in ph. They all get along really well. I would never have done anything like this in the past but I was out of options. I think that lots of fish could be kept together I have community tanks with mixes of fish from all over the world. I would rather not mix fish but sometimes we have to do what we have to do wither we like it or not.
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