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Discussion regarding only Lake Malawi species.
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newbie here!

Sat Sep 14, 2019 3:41 pm

hey everyone!

im not new to the hobby, just cichlids. never kept them before. just community stuff; guppis, gouramis, barbs, etc...

I've recently moved and completely tore my tanks down ( 40gallon and 10gallon), and am starting over from scratch. I have eco complete cichlid substrate, holy rocks and a big piece of birchwood. I def want colorful cichlids, obviously somewhat small being in a 40, and preferably a couple different species.

my question is, I have no idea where to start for stocking ideas? all these names mean nothing to me. from what I gathered mbunas would be a good choice for my tank, correct? specifically what type should I look for? how many any male to female ratio?

TIA for your help!

Re: newbie here!

Sat Sep 14, 2019 4:13 pm

Hi and Welcome to C-F!!

What are the dimensions of your 40 gallon tank?

Re: newbie here!

Sat Sep 14, 2019 4:55 pm

36" long 24" tall and 12 or 14" deep I believe

Re: newbie here!

Sat Sep 14, 2019 4:57 pm

just checked, its actually a 38gallon. the dimensioms are 36 1/4 L
12 5/8 D
19 3/4 T

Re: newbie here!

Sat Sep 14, 2019 6:50 pm

I would skip the mbuna because most are better in a 48" tank or longer. What about some Tanganyikans?

I started with and still have the same tank.

Re: newbie here!

Sun Sep 15, 2019 1:02 pm

I was thinking salousi and socofli I believe theyre called, max out at 5-6". was thinking 1m 4f of both species and maybe a small pleco. what tanganyikans could I keep?

Re: newbie here!

Sun Sep 15, 2019 2:34 pm

Socolofi are aggressive and need a 48" tank. You could do a species tank with just saulosi. Do not substitute other species for the saulosi...it is not a size issue.

My favorites for that tank were a pair of calvus and a pair of caudopunctatus. Start with six of each and rehome as the pair rejects the others before they are killed.

You could substitute shellies for the caudopunctatus. And you could substitute a small, peaceful julidochromis (like Gombe) for the calvus.

Re: newbie here!

Sun Sep 15, 2019 4:06 pm

I don't think those are available to me. what about demasoni and yellow labs?

Re: newbie here!

Sun Sep 15, 2019 5:00 pm

Demasoni are a difficult fish to keep, and it is true that 12 demasoni a 3 yellow labs used to be recommended for a 36" tank.

Having kept them for fourteen years now, for the first two years in such a tank and 48" tanks and 72" tanks I would never again go less than 48".

Are you ordering online (recommended)? I do see saulosi on the lists. The name has been changed, look for Chindongo saulosi.

Re: newbie here!

Sun Sep 15, 2019 5:06 pm

I would prefer to get local, I've never ordered fish. what site should I use if I do order? and will it be more expensive than local?

Re: newbie here!

Sun Sep 15, 2019 5:41 pm

PM sent. If you are ordering the whole tank, usually I find the price/fish online is lower so even with the shipping the total is the same or less.

And you can't get the same quality and selection at an LFS.

Re: newbie here!

Sun Sep 15, 2019 5:44 pm

Cool! Thank you for your help! There doesn’t seem to be a lot of people that are into the hobby locally so I don’t really have anyone to learn from.
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