Lake Malawi Species • New 75 gallon but not new to mbuna

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New 75 gallon but not new to mbuna

Postby MbunaManBran » Sat Aug 22, 2020 4:49 am

Several years ago I kept a 60 gallon of mbuna, but when we moved I had to rehome my tank to a friend. I picked the hobby back up recently and purchased a 75 gallon. I think I wanted to do an all male tank this time around, the last one was m and f and worked out great but I want a lot more color. What would your stocking suggestions be as far as species go? I would assume I would do about 20. On the other hand, I prefer to buy juveniles and have them all grow up together and sexing a non-mature mbuna is almost impossible. So I am stuck between a rock and hard place, do I do a mix or an all male and purchase adults?

I have 2 x Marineland 350-B and a Marineland Magniflow 360 canister filter which roughly filters 1,000 gph, I have even thought about purchasing a second Magniflow. I always like to severely over-filtrate my cichlids, I like clear pristine water at all times.

Also in the past I have painted the back glass a Caribbean blue, but recently was informed that doing black will assist the coloring up of the fish. Is there any validity to this?

Thanks in advance
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Joined: Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:47 pm
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Re: New 75 gallon but not new to mbuna

Postby DJRansome » Sat Aug 22, 2020 10:17 am

I would do haps and peacocks because the tank is more likely to work (without the extra mbuna aggression). It's easier to find 12 fish that look nothing alike. You can buy sexed adults. None of this is generally true with all male mbuna.

Colors in your decor will not "help" the fish color. He will color if he is dominant and feels comfortable in the tank. The colors may appear to have more contrast on black. But the fish may also try to make his color match the black and end up sooty looking. The carribean blue may make the fish look drab because the carribbean blue is so bright. Personally I like a medium-dark gray with the goal to (a) be more neutral than the fish, and (b) make the fish feel comfortable with a color closer to his natural rock/sand surroundings and ensure he will glow with health.

I would not do 20 males in a 75G whether mbuna or haps/peacocks. I would do 12 males that mature <= six inches.
125G Borleyi, Multipunctata
75G Demasoni, Msobo, Lucipinnis
75G Calvus, Similis, Petricola
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Re: New 75 gallon but not new to mbuna

Postby MbunaManBran » Sat Aug 22, 2020 10:51 am

I guess I have some research to do on haps and peacocks. I have only ever had mbuna, is there much of a difference between them other than their level of aggression and size?
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Re: New 75 gallon but not new to mbuna

Postby DJRansome » Sat Aug 22, 2020 12:14 pm

Haps/peacock species can be the same size as mbuna. Many mature at six inches like mbuna.

Significant difference in aggression.

Haps/peacocks are more carnivorus and mbuna live on algae and the microorganisms that live in the algae. You don't have to be as careful feeding a lower protein food to haps and peacocks.

With all male you keep fish that look nothing alike. Once you get a blue, a yellow/orange, a barred fish and a striped fish you have basically exhausted color options among the more peaceful mbuna.

There is an article on all-male tanks in the Cichlid-forum Library that can get you oriented.
125G Borleyi, Multipunctata
75G Demasoni, Msobo, Lucipinnis
75G Calvus, Similis, Petricola
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Re: New 75 gallon but not new to mbuna

Postby MbunaManBran » Sat Aug 22, 2020 1:42 pm

Thank you for the help!!
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