South American Cichlids • Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful community

Discussion regarding only South American Cichlid species. (Oscars, Geophagines, Discus, Apistogramma, Green Terrors, Angels, Severums, Pikes, etc.)

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Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful community

Postby cichlidluvr82 » Fri Oct 27, 2017 2:41 pm

I've got a 45 gallon community tank and I've had extremely bad luck with my platies and a few other species. I do have rainbowfish and they are very hardy. As my other fish due off I've decided I want to do a peaceful cichlid community tank. However I only had advertisements cichlids back in the day and 1 Oscar. I just added a baby keyhole cichlid. In the future I want to add more peaceful cichlids and eventually I want just a cichlid tank. But I really need stocking ideas. Nothing that gets bigger than 6". Also I know even peaceful species can turn into murderers when they are breeding and guarding eggs and fry. So I am thinking either 1 of each species or a species that's easy to determine sex so that I end up with no mated pairs. I really love keyhole, apistogramma, rams, festivum, kribensis. But I see a lot of others online that I like but I really need some good advice on stocking ideas. I do not want aggression issues.
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Joined: Sat Oct 07, 2017 12:22 am
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby cichlidluvr82 » Fri Oct 27, 2017 2:42 pm

I really like blue acaras too.
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby cichlidluvr82 » Fri Oct 27, 2017 7:35 pm

Anyone??? This forum is not very responsive or helpful. I joined to get into and advice from cichlid owners.
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby Deeda » Sat Oct 28, 2017 11:26 am

It's possible that members familiar with SA cichlids haven't visited lately so don't get too discouraged by lack of a quick response.

What are the dimensions of your tank?
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby judyok » Sat Oct 28, 2017 1:33 pm

If you can find a festivum, that would be a fabulous addition. You've already listed some good choices for cichlds. Since it's south american you could also add a great looking pleco like a leopard frog pleco(expensive, but beautiful), bluefin panaque there are many others. I have severums, anglefish, electric blue acara, diamond tetras and red tail sternella plecos in my south american tank.
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby cichlidluvr82 » Sun Oct 29, 2017 12:23 am

I have a lfs that sells festivis, so I can get my hands on one. But I read they get between 8-10" and my tank is only 45g. It's taller rather than long. 36" long x 13" deep x 24" high. Festivums are at the top of my list if they don't get too big. I actually Love severums too but they get too big for my tank. So this is what I'm thinking for my future stocking.

1. 1-2 keyholes (same sex)
2. 1 electric blue acara
3. 1 male apistogramma (not sure what species)
4. 1 male kribensis
5. 4 rams (not sure what species)
6. 1 pleco that only gets up to 6"

What do u think? I would really love ideas on other smaller peaceful south American cichlids. Wait, can the kribensis be worth the others or not because they are African cichlids?
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby drewzaun » Sun Oct 29, 2017 5:46 pm

45g isn’t that big and the keyholes and acara won’t be happy once they grow out. Cramping can be a significant cause of stress and aggression. If you can rehome at least 2 of the big fish, maybe replace them with a small group of 3-4 angels that would be a nice tank with the dwarf cichlids you’ve got, a ton of personality.
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby cichlidluvr82 » Mon Oct 30, 2017 1:18 am

I've already got 1 baby keyhole and 1 kribensis. Why would u suggest angels when they get bigger than keyhole and acaras? I can keep just the one keyhole, and do maybe just a couple rams. Or I can ditch the acara and do 2 apistogrammas.
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby FireHorn123 » Wed Nov 01, 2017 8:13 pm

A Firemouth community tank would work with a 45g for sure. I had a pair of Firemouths with Zebra Danios, Tiger Barbs, Congo Tetras, and it was all planted it was an awesome tank. Highly recommend Firemouths.
40gB- (2)Gold Severum, (2)Guppies [Unfinished]
30gL-(2)Rainbow Cichlid Pair, (5)White Skirt Tetras [Finished]
29g- (2) Kribensis Pair (4) Mixed Cory Cats [Nearly Finished]
20gL- (1)Male Dwarf Gourami [Unfinished]
10g-Unoccupied
450g Fountain Pond-[HEAVY WORK IN PROGRESS]
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby cichlidluvr82 » Fri Nov 03, 2017 9:29 pm

So firemouths aren't that aggressive? I guess I can do a keyhole cichlid, firemouth, apistogramma, bolivian rams and festivum cichlids.
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby BC in SK » Sat Nov 04, 2017 6:00 pm

cichlidluvr82 wrote:So firemouths aren't that aggressive?

No, they definitely can be aggressive.
It is different mixing cichlids with non-cichlids then it is with other cichlids. All cichlids will count in terms of a pecking order, though non-cichlids may or may not 'count' to varying degrees dependent on how the cichlids view them as territorial threats.
Aggression is relative. Compared to most other CA cichlids, FM aren't all that aggressive. Compared to the SA cichlids that you have listed, FM are usually considerably more aggressive.
Festivum is the only SA cichlid from your list that I would consider mixing with FM, and really would be much better in a bigger tank then 45 gallons.
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby cichlidluvr82 » Sun Nov 05, 2017 6:02 am

I'll ditch the idea of a firemouth. I just want a few different peaceful SA cichlids that don't get too big. I really love my keyhole, I really like festivum, apistogramma's and rams. I really like electric blue acaras. I just don't want any aggression issues. I've had horrible luck with rams. I really like earth eaters, but it seems like they all get too big. I love severum, but they get way too big for a 45g.
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby FireHorn123 » Mon Nov 06, 2017 1:43 pm

BC in SK wrote:
cichlidluvr82 wrote:So firemouths aren't that aggressive?

No, they definitely can be aggressive.
It is different mixing cichlids with non-cichlids then it is with other cichlids. All cichlids will count in terms of a pecking order, though non-cichlids may or may not 'count' to varying degrees dependent on how the cichlids view them as territorial threats.
Aggression is relative. Compared to most other CA cichlids, FM aren't all that aggressive. Compared to the SA cichlids that you have listed, FM are usually considerably more aggressive.
Festivum is the only SA cichlid from your list that I would consider mixing with FM, and really would be much better in a bigger tank then 45 gallons.


Firemouths are more bluffers than fighters I agree with you.
40gB- (2)Gold Severum, (2)Guppies [Unfinished]
30gL-(2)Rainbow Cichlid Pair, (5)White Skirt Tetras [Finished]
29g- (2) Kribensis Pair (4) Mixed Cory Cats [Nearly Finished]
20gL- (1)Male Dwarf Gourami [Unfinished]
10g-Unoccupied
450g Fountain Pond-[HEAVY WORK IN PROGRESS]
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby Hidan » Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:00 am

cichlidluvr82 wrote:I've already got 1 baby keyhole and 1 kribensis. Why would u suggest angels when they get bigger than keyhole and acaras? I can keep just the one keyhole, and do maybe just a couple rams. Or I can ditch the acara and do 2 apistogrammas.

Tank is too small for the Acara.

Have had a kribensis who ended up being a true bully and killing off widely considered more aggressive fish, but most people will have stories of a cichlids widely considered peaceful being hyper aggressive, so its often luck as each fish is different.

Your best bet is a couple of angels with the fish you have and a couple of bottom dwellers, maybe a festivum and rams.
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Re: Need help with stocking suggestions for peaceful communi

Postby cichlidluvr82 » Thu Nov 16, 2017 2:00 pm

Would festivums be ok in my 45 gallon? I think I'll do a couple keyhole, a couple apistogrammas, and a few rams. I thought Angela need a really big tank. It says they can get up to 10".
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