Lake Malawi Species • Help me choose a barred mbuna

Discussion regarding only Lake Malawi species.

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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby ken31cay » Mon Dec 02, 2019 11:40 am

I have 1m:9f Kenyi & Trewavasae Chilumba, plus 1m;2f ob peacocks in my (6') 180gal and even now it's getting too crowded for my tastes. I have one half filled to the top with rocks, the other half partially filled/broken rockwork. This is my first all-mbuna tank. Won't 36 mbuna in the 120gal be a little crowded?

RE: Demasoni: I've had these in mixed malawi tanks and they are pretty but they all eventually died for reasons I couldn't identify. I've heard they're 'delicate' and best kept in species-only tanks.
450gal Frontosa (blue Zaire Moba) & haps
180gal Trewavasae Chilumba & Kenyi
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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby DJRansome » Mon Dec 02, 2019 2:11 pm

ken31cay wrote:IRE: Demasoni: I've had these in mixed malawi tanks and they are pretty but they all eventually died for reasons I couldn't identify. I've heard they're 'delicate' and best kept in species-only tanks.
Maybe mixing with other blue barred fish like kenyi?
125G Borleyi, Multipunctata
75G Demasoni, Msobo, Lucipinnis
75G Calvus, Similis, Petricola
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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby Mudkicker1 » Wed Dec 04, 2019 4:57 pm

So, changed my list again based on what I can actually get my hands on.

Membe Deep 1m:6f
OB Red Zebra 1m:6f
Kenyi 1m:6f

I have orange, yellow, and blue and bars covered.

What do y'all think?

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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby DJRansome » Wed Dec 04, 2019 5:08 pm

All metriaclima though. Some solids in each species. OB versus solid is not different enough.

With kenyi you probably want a 72" tank. Very aggressive. 1m:7f at least.

The Membe Deep females and OB females will not have much contrast.

You can get your hands on Membe Deep! Grab them!!
125G Borleyi, Multipunctata
75G Demasoni, Msobo, Lucipinnis
75G Calvus, Similis, Petricola
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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby ken31cay » Wed Dec 04, 2019 6:02 pm

Yes the Kenyi in my tank are so aggressive, even more than the Trewavasae who are themselves maniacs. These were all I could get locally and my africans supplier in the U.S. doesn't do mbuna. If you can get better mbuna (less aggressive, more colorful) then I'd do that in a heartbeat.
450gal Frontosa (blue Zaire Moba) & haps
180gal Trewavasae Chilumba & Kenyi
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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby Mudkicker1 » Wed Dec 04, 2019 6:32 pm

DJRansome wrote:All metriaclima though. Some solids in each species. OB versus solid is not different enough.

With kenyi you probably want a 72" tank. Very aggressive. 1m:7f at least.

The Membe Deep females and OB females will not have much contrast.

You can get your hands on Membe Deep! Grab them!!
I'm very open to suggestions. I know I can get Membe Deep for sure, ten 1" fry.
I can also get Demasoni for the blue barred instead of the Kenyi.
We're just missing deep orange or red. The Membe Deep females are mustard yellow I was send a video of the parents.

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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby DJRansome » Wed Dec 04, 2019 7:22 pm

There is no red. The cherry red estherae are the closest...the orange color in my avatar behind the demasoni.

So that means no Membe Deep since they are both Metriaclima with solid females.

Yellow with colorful females is yellow labs, but you don't want to mix with estherae.

For you to prioritize between the orange and yellow.

If you go demasoni (I thought you did not like aggression? or tinkering?) then do 15 in a 75G after removing extra males.
125G Borleyi, Multipunctata
75G Demasoni, Msobo, Lucipinnis
75G Calvus, Similis, Petricola
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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby Mudkicker1 » Wed Dec 04, 2019 7:33 pm

DJRansome wrote:There is no red. The cherry red estherae are the closest...the orange color in my avatar behind the demasoni.

So that means no Membe Deep since they are both Metriaclima with solid females.

Yellow with colorful females is yellow labs, but you don't want to mix with estherae.

For you to prioritize between the orange and yellow.

If you go demasoni (I thought you did not like aggression? or tinkering?) then do 15 in a 75G after removing extra males.
I don't like aggression and I don't like tinkering loll, but I guess I'm willing to do it to get a beautiful end result. Yellow labs are not an option as I already have a colony in a different tank. I want something new. Will Demasoni and Membe be a good mix?

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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby DJRansome » Wed Dec 04, 2019 7:36 pm

Yes. You could throw in Acei or White Labs or Maingano if you want a 3rd species.
125G Borleyi, Multipunctata
75G Demasoni, Msobo, Lucipinnis
75G Calvus, Similis, Petricola
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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby Mudkicker1 » Wed Dec 04, 2019 7:41 pm

DJRansome wrote:Yes. You could throw in Acei or White Labs or Maingano if you want a 3rd species.
I wish I was able to get some Labidochromis Lundu, white with black bars. Haven't seen them in probably a decade. Do you have any tips for Demasoni?

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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby DJRansome » Wed Dec 04, 2019 10:16 pm

No. All the ones I have purchased from vendors have been terrible in recent years.
125G Borleyi, Multipunctata
75G Demasoni, Msobo, Lucipinnis
75G Calvus, Similis, Petricola
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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby BC in SK » Sun Dec 08, 2019 3:33 pm

Mudkicker1 wrote:I can also get Demasoni for the blue barred instead of the Kenyi.

If it's a choice between kenyi and demasoni, I think you are much better off with demasoni. Unless you are really up for the challenge of maintaining an aggressive cichlid, I'd avoid kenyi.
IME and IMO, demasoni is a far easier cichlid to keep then Kenyi. While demasoni is also an aggressive mbuna, it is not nearly as likely to become an aggression problem like kenyi often do.
Have kept demasoni in 4 tanks for almost 5 years now (for periods of time in 5 tanks). I don't keep them anywhere near groups of 12+. There is a thread on another cichlid forum (that is no longer available and I can no longer link to) with many posters having success with demasoni in small numbers. So it is not uncommon. It is not some kind of iron clad law that you need to maintain larger numbers of them to have success though i think it a good idea to start off with larger numbers just like any other mbuna and get rid of extra males fairly soon. I keep them as follows: 180 gal: 1m:2f, 125 gal: 1m: 4f, 75 gal: 1m:3f , 90 gal: 1m in an all male, though I had group for over 3 years in the 90 gal. until i moved females to another tank. I was leery to begin with, to tinker with the groups, but have since moved fish around from one tank to another many times to suit my purposes with out any real problems other then once. I replaced my larger dominant male in my 75 gal. with a small, young male. I had a war break out between my older females and lost a couple but that could happen to any cichlid group when a "power vacuum" occurs when the dominant fish of a group is removed.
IME, only auratus has been a more difficult mbuna to keep then kenyi.
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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby noki » Sun Dec 08, 2019 6:43 pm

Kenyi are not really a good example of a barred mbuna anyway, the barring does not intensify with dominance. Adults are often not as attractive as juviniles. Demasoni are really mostly concerned with each other, they seem to be at constant war with their own species. Monomorphic are not less stressed out than barred fish that change, you just can't tell as easily.
...
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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby ironspider » Mon Dec 09, 2019 8:18 am

I had two Demasoni in my 55g with a bunch of cobalts, labs and rusties. They did fine, one stayed on one side of the tank and the other on the other side, they didn't fight, although one didn't color up well, the stronger of the two was gorgeous but the other was and still is super drab looking. I lost the strong one (Zed) recently (yes, he was so cool we named him) for reasons unknown, nobody messed with him. IMO Demasoni is one of the most beautiful widely available mbuna's.
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Re: Help me choose a barred mbuna

Postby Mudkicker1 » Tue Dec 10, 2019 1:43 pm

I have the chance to order the following...

Labeotropheus Fulleborni Eccles Reef
Labeotropheus Trewavasae Ochre Chilumba

Which would you get?
Tank mates will be...
Pseudotropheus Membe Deep
White Top Hara

Thank you

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