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Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Thu Feb 15, 2018 1:36 pm
by ironspider
I'm new to Cichlids but very excited to get it going. I'm currently cycling a 55 gallon 48" tank, I'll post a pic below with the rock setup I have.

Looking around for the right fish is a daunting task, I like them all but with the Mbunas, tang, haps etc. I'm lost. I'm looking for the most colorful fish the will coexist. If any of you can give me a list of what you'd start with it would be much appreciated. I especially like the bright yellows and electric blue Cichlids, they seem to catch my eye more than other. thnaks.

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Thu Feb 15, 2018 6:31 pm
by DJRansome
For mbuna I would triple the rocks. This combo could work...the electric blues are not ideal for a 55G:
1m:4f Labidochromis caeruleus (bright yellow)
1m:4f Iodotropheus sprengerae (bright rust and purple)
1m:4f Metriaclima callainos (bright [but not dark] blue)

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:20 pm
by ironspider
DJRansome wrote:For mbuna I would triple the rocks. This combo could work...the electric blues are not ideal for a 55G:
1m:4f Labidochromis caeruleus (bright yellow)
1m:4f Iodotropheus sprengerae (bright rust and purple)
1m:4f Metriaclima callainos (bright [but not dark] blue)



Those are all beautiful fish. I'm not sure I can get much higher without it becoming unstable though, and I definitely don't want to adhere them together. If I put more rocks on the side I'll lose all the ground area and don't they like to dig?

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Thu Feb 15, 2018 11:03 pm
by DJRansome
Don't try to leave cavities or balance them...jumble them all together. You only need enough substrate around the edge to fit your Python when vacuuming the substrate.

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:05 am
by thornsja19
Another tip, they do love digging, so make sure the bottom layer of rocks is physically on the bottom of the tank. Otherwise they could dig out all the substrate underneath and cause the whole pile to shift/fall.

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2018 7:51 am
by ironspider
I have 3/4 large flat "base" rocks around an inch in width laying on the glass, stacked up from there. So right now you can dig and nothing would happen. I try and make it higher. It's a lot harder full of water.

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Thu Feb 22, 2018 12:37 pm
by FireHorn123
So you want Mbuna?

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Thu Feb 22, 2018 8:40 pm
by ironspider
FireHorn123 wrote:So you want Mbuna?


Yes, Mbuna but I keep flip flopping when I see a really cool Hap.

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Fri Feb 23, 2018 9:52 am
by FireHorn123
im Not as well tuned in mbuna as I am in SA/CA and Peacocks and Haps I’ll leave this to DJ

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:41 pm
by ironspider
In my looking around for the right fish, I find that a lot of breeders are selling "unsexed." DJRansome, you indicate that it should be 1m4f, but it seems I can't find anything that will offer sexed Mbunas.

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Fri Feb 23, 2018 10:02 pm
by DJRansome
That is absolutely normal. Buy 8 unsexed juveniles and rehome extra males as they mature.

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:07 am
by ironspider
I'm getting closer to getting fish...Just need my cycle to finish. I was looking around online to buy fish because the one near me I don't like the store. I did, however, find another nearby store with a decent stock of african cichlids, the owner was too busy and I wasn't buying so I looked and left. I have no idea if they are all Mbuna or what. Should I chance it with fish or just buy online where everything is listed. Plus the yellow labs looked orange. (if they were yellow labs) Nice fish though, very happy.

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:58 am
by DJRansome
If they are not labeled with a species name, they could be hybrids. I almost always buy online...or if I buy from a store or hobbyist, I know their source and it is usually one I trust online.

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 11:33 am
by ironspider
DJRansome wrote:If they are not labeled with a species name, they could be hybrids. I almost always buy online...or if I buy from a store or hobbyist, I know their source and it is usually one I trust online.


Who do you recommend online?

Re: Help me stock my tank

PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:29 pm
by DJRansome
PM sent