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75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby bigmbunaguy » Wed May 22, 2019 11:06 pm

Hey everyone,

My tank has finally matured and cycled and today I put my first cichlids in my 75 gallon tank that I got for Christmas! I am very excited so I purchased 5 fish at the LFS. I purchased 3 peacocks, one bicolor peacock and one Taiwan reef. The fish seem to be enjoying the new environment and there is no aggression. However, I have an issue. Currently, my tank is set up with a heater and filter... and now five fish. There is no substrate or rocks yet. I was planning on adding sand, but I do not want to damage the filter, which I head sand can do. Fow, it is barebottom. If anyone can tell me what kind of pool filter sand, I will look into that. Also, how can I distract the fish so I can scape my aquarium? Is it safe for me to add my hands in the tank and restructure the rocks.. Im a little intimidated by these peacocks right now lol.

1) What kind of pool filter sand should I get?
2) Is it safe (for me) to put my hands in the tank?
3) Will the cichlids swim away when I put rocks in the tank to scape.... or will i have to go through the dreadful task of removing these behemoths and watch them flop in the net while I put them in a bucket?
4) Lastly, one of the fish got stressed out and lost virtually all of its color. How long until that comes back?

Thank you very much for your insight and advice!
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby Kipnlilo » Thu May 23, 2019 10:12 am

1. I can’t help you on a certain pool sand as I use Caribsea sand, but I know someone else will be able to.
2. My arms are in my tanks all the time. Just be sure they are clean and soap free.
3. The fish are fine left in the tank while you scape it.
4. Depending on your stock list, he may not color back fully ever. Please post all of the fish in the tank. Be specific on your peacocks, haps if possible, pics would help also.
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby DJRansome » Thu May 23, 2019 5:59 pm

Pool filter sand is really just a mineral (100% silica) that is crushed and sifted to give you a standard 20 grain size. And it is cleaned really well.

So, there is no particular kind. I got some from a pool/spa chain one time and an aggregate dealer (think sand blasting) another time.

The fish are curious and annoyed that you are disturbing them. Of course you can put your arms in the tank (drain half the water first) but you are likely to have to shoo them away and some are stubborn.
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby ken31cay » Thu May 23, 2019 6:22 pm

I also have an Aulonocara Maulana Bi-Color (peacock) and a Protomelas Steveni Taiwan Reef (hap). What are the other three types of peacocks you have?

1. I get mine from a regular pool store. Just make sure you rinse it thoroughly in a bucket before putting in your tank or it will cloud your water really bad.
2. There's no danger to you. When you're all done make sure and wash your hands really good.
3. It depends. The fish can either be curious or they could also be scared and try to hide. I suggest you layout your proposed scape on your floor first so you know exactly where everything will go into your tank. That'll minimize the fishes' stress.
450gal male peacocks & haps, Frontosa
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby bigmbunaguy » Thu May 23, 2019 9:55 pm

Hey thank you all SO MUCH for you replies. It means a lot to me.

I would love your help to identify which species of peacocks i have currently!

one.jpg

Two.jpg

Three.jpg

Four.jpg

Five.jpg

Six.jpg

Seven.jpg

Eight.jpg


Sometimes I get nervous that there are only four fish in the tank and one shot out through the small opening of no glass... It seems that he is always hiding behind the HOB filter, which is a shame because it is one of my favorites!

I know i have to add rocks and substrate. I will be getting some pool filter sand (hopefullly tomorrow) but I am really hating the idea of paying $5 a pound for some texas holey rock!
I might go back to the LFS and pick up some yellow labs tomorrow!
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby XpensiveWino » Thu May 23, 2019 10:07 pm

Get the rocks, substrate, and likely some more fish in there quickly. Your big boy hanging out up top is there because he is stressed, and likely being harassed. Hiding at the top is unnatural and a sign of distress.

They need places to hide and to 'stake out' to some degree.

There are a ton of opinions on this, but the more fish there are, the more aggression get spread around into some sort of hopeful balance in the tank. I think DJ recommends like 12 fish in your size tank. There are arguments that up to a fish per two gallons is appropriate. Four years in with hundreds of gallons of cichlids and I am still navigating that quagmire. However, 5 fish in a bare tank with one hiding behind the filter is unhealthy.
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby Kipnlilo » Thu May 23, 2019 11:02 pm

XpensiveWino wrote:Get the rocks, substrate, and likely some more fish in there quickly. Your big boy hanging out up top is there because he is stressed, and likely being harassed. Hiding at the top is unnatural and a sign of distress.

They need places to hide and to 'stake out' to some degree.

There are a ton of opinions on this, but the more fish there are, the more aggression get spread around into some sort of hopeful balance in the tank. I think DJ recommends like 12 fish in your size tank. There are arguments that up to a fish per two gallons is appropriate. Four years in with hundreds of gallons of cichlids and I am still navigating that quagmire. However, 5 fish in a bare tank with one hiding behind the filter is unhealthy.


+1. You have an OB (hybrid) in there. Likely the one doing the harassing. Is the one with the blaze from nose to dorsal colored down also?
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby ken31cay » Thu May 23, 2019 11:25 pm

Like Xpensivewino said above, you should get the sand & rocks in there asap as it's not an optimal picture for you fish at the moment. IMHO also adding around six or more same size yellow labs would be a good thing for the tank as a short term fix.

I'd agree that the OB (orange blotch peacock) might be the culprit for aggression; I'd watch them and if that's the case I'd bring him back to the store. But that OB you have looks like it could be a female. In my limited experience the male OB's have blue around the head area and I don't see any blue in your pics. I've had to rehome all my male OB's once they approached adult size due to aggression, though my females are more docile and still living just fine with my other peacocks.
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby bigmbunaguy » Thu May 23, 2019 11:26 pm

I should have been more specific. That fish hides in the filter very rarery and there has been no aggression so far. The five of them like to bundle up together. The silver peacock finally regained most of its color again! I am very excited and thought it was so cool that it was able to do that.

Another cichlid question:
1) Sometimes I hear the fish bang into my aquarium walls. Do i have anything to be concerned about? Thanks!
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby bigmbunaguy » Thu May 23, 2019 11:44 pm

The silver peacock finally changed its color again. However, after twenty minutes it went back to silver. Hopefully, everything will be back to normal tomorrow
ninie.jpg
ten.jpg

Cant wait to add some more stuff to the tank tomorrow!
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby DJRansome » Fri May 24, 2019 6:58 am

You can see from the pics that your fish is harassed. Agree with the other members. It may seem seldom to you. Aggression is seldom observed.

The banging will not hurt the fish, but it is yet another sign of chasing...the fish trying to escape is bashing into the glass as he flees, too desperate to look where he is going. Best to do what you can to remedy your situation.
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby Kipnlilo » Fri May 24, 2019 6:37 pm

Another big clue to aggression is to look at your last picture you took. Look what fish appears to own half the tank. The OB. Not saying that is for sure your problem fish, but it’s very coincidental. As others have said, try to get that substrate in asap and the rocks to block straight lines of sight. Just to be honest (not trying to be rude), it’s not going to be back to normal if you don’t take steps toward the advise given. Odds are, you will wake up to sick or even a dead fish if you don’t “remedy the situation” as DJ says.
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby bigmbunaguy » Fri May 24, 2019 10:26 pm

I appreciate your advice. Substrate was added. Still need to get rocks.

Cichlid question:

The silver fish fell on the floor while transferring the fish when I initially put it in the tank. I see traces of the blue and orange that it was before it fell. This is probably stress related and all seem to be eating well. How long until it regains color?
Also, sometimes the OB has half the tank by himself.. sometimes its the bicolor and sometimes its the blue and orange guy! Currently all five are bundled together and swimming.

Thanks and I look forward to hearing back on the color situation!
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby DJRansome » Sat May 25, 2019 10:17 am

Not sure it was this thread, but it would regain color in days if isolated in another tank. With tank mates, it will depend on where he is in the pecking order...if he is last he may keep his colors "turned off" for years.
125G Borleyi, Maleri, Astatotilapia, Multipunctata
75G Demasoni, Maingano, Msobo, Lucipinnis
75G Calvus, Petricola
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Re: 75 Gallon Peacock Tank! Help me tackle next problem

Postby bigmbunaguy » Tue May 28, 2019 11:49 pm

Update: I purchased 60 pounds of sand (Caribsea Aragonite). I also bought some slate from Home Depot. I have made about 4 cave structures and the glue is currently drying right now. People are telling me that peacocks and haps dont need rocks, but I feel the tank is a little empty so I think it will look good. I have also added 3 more cichlids (A sunshine yellow, Red Shoulder Peacock and an azureus that looks amazing).
Total stock in the tank: Bicolor peacock , OB Peacock, Taiwan Reef, a peacock with an orange body and a blue face, and a peacock that is currently silver because he jumped out of the tank as I was putting him in from the first batch)

The fish that used to hide behind the filter is now one of the bullies. It looks like the new weakest is the sunshine yellow peacock.

Is there anything I should look at to make sure everything is running smoothly?

These fish poop a lot. I feed them eight pellets of Hikaru gold medium pellets (one for each in theory) twice a day. Ammonia is at the .25/.5 ppm so I have been doing daily 20% water changes


Questions: When I add water during water changes, the sand shoots up. How do people with sand tanks keep this from happening? I might just buy a little rake or something to fix it after the sand is displaced.

Any more advice?
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