General African Cichlid Discussion • Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

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Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby ronphilpot » Fri Feb 08, 2019 6:54 pm

Just starting a new 60 gallon tank. I do want to establish cichlids in it eventually. Length is 48" . I currently have a 36 gallon tank with community fish..does it make sense to seed with gravel from that tank? Also, my tap water is naturally 7.8, do I need to raise it into 8.2 range for Cichlids?
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby Sub-Mariner » Fri Feb 08, 2019 7:33 pm

I would just do a fishless cycle or use media from your current filter. Gravel is smooth and doesn't have inner pores so there won't be hardly any BB on it.

About the pH as long as it's stable you're perfectly fine, no need to buffer.

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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby ronphilpot » Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:43 pm

Thank you..so if I just took a filter from my old tank and swapped it into new tank..that would do it?
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby DJRansome » Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:58 pm

Example: If you had 2 filters on the 36" tank and put one in the 60G tank it would support the equivalent of 1/2 the bioload of your 36" tank.

So maybe not a fully-stocked 55G from day one, but you could then bump up the crop of beneficial bacteria with ammonia before adding fish, or add your cichlids in small groups (say 5 at a time every other month) and let the beneficial bacteria catch up between additions.
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby ronphilpot » Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:17 pm

I will do this. I don't mind waiting a while, so maybe do it twice, a week apart. Many thanks. I do have another question about fish choice and quantity. Will follow.
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby ronphilpot » Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:26 pm

Would it make sense to add maybe 4 blue Johanni and 4 yellow Johanni to this tank. (it is 55 gallons, not 60)

I love the colours. My Ph at 7.8 still OK? Will they breed at 7.8 PH?
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby DJRansome » Fri Feb 08, 2019 11:45 pm

I would skip johannii in a 55G. The blue are the males and the yellow are the females. Even in a 75G you would want only one male/tank. Seven or more females for this aggressive fish.

Do what twice? Wait a month or more between additions. The bacteria need time to grow.
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby ronphilpot » Sat Feb 09, 2019 12:00 am

Got it..thats what I will do then. not gonna rush this. Thanks.
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby DJRansome » Sat Feb 09, 2019 12:32 am

7.8 is fine and they will breed when (a) settled and (b) mature enough.
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby ronphilpot » Sat Feb 09, 2019 6:49 pm

Okay, now I know that Johannis are not a good starter Cichlid for me. If I add say 5 per month as suggested, are there any colourful blues or yellows that would make sense ? And how many would be a sensible limit of fish.
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby DJRansome » Sat Feb 09, 2019 7:41 pm

Three species with 1m:4f is a good guideline. Labidochromis caeruleus is an excellent yellow for beginners.
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby ronphilpot » Sat Feb 09, 2019 10:39 pm

Thanks again.. will check that out.
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby ronphilpot » Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:10 pm

Very happy with 1 + 4 Lab. Caeruleus, as 1st addition. Would Cynotilapia Sp.
Hara be a decent 2nd add, same ratio?
I'm guessing 10 fish are enough for a year or so..true?
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby DJRansome » Sun Feb 10, 2019 8:16 pm

hara are good for 2nd addition, but you want 15 to manage aggression. What about rusties for month #3?
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Re: Cichlids ..55 Gallon tank

Postby ronphilpot » Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:47 am

Think that would be a great 3rd addition..So now, need to get that tank properly prepared..Thank for all the help!
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