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New demasoni not coloring up

Sun Dec 13, 2020 9:11 pm

I‘m new to Mbunas and I got my group of 4 demasoni 2 days ago. I know it’s not long and they need to adapt, but I see a pattern. Every time I turn on the light, even if I’m careful they’re not too bright (I can control the intensity), the one that looks like the dominate male loses color. And he colors back up when I dim the light to around 3%-5% intensity.

I’m gradually getting them used to having light in the tank. The first 30 hours I had no light on and started increasing slowly to a few hours a day, not going any higher than 25%-30% intensity.

Will they get used to it or are Demasoni especially known to not color up when too bright for their taste ?

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Sun Dec 13, 2020 9:50 pm

No, demasoni are not known to have issues with light. Normally you want them in groups much larger than four. Do you have any pictures of them?

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Sun Dec 13, 2020 10:56 pm

Fogelhund wrote:No, demasoni are not known to have issues with light. Normally you want them in groups much larger than four. Do you have any pictures of them?


They’re constantly moving but I’ll try to get a picture tomorrow. I should have mentioned they are juveniles, around 1.5-2.0 inches.

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Mon Dec 14, 2020 11:32 am

Here’s a video this morning, when the lights are off and their colors are showing :

https://youtu.be/tBOmo8Xa7IM

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Mon Dec 14, 2020 1:13 pm

They look fine in that video.

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Mon Dec 14, 2020 9:10 pm

Fogelhund wrote:They look fine in that video.


Yes, since the lights were off. They get really pale when the light is on. I suppose they will adapt eventually.

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Mon Dec 14, 2020 10:53 pm

I'd be more concerned with only having 4...also, the tank looks on the small size for a decent group of demasoni like they really need to be kept. What size is the tank, is it a bowfront?

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Tue Dec 15, 2020 1:22 am

The tank decor is all light/ white, and cichlids tend to match the bottom. A white bottom the Demasoni may look more washed out. A dark bottom the Demasoni may look more black.

They all seem a bit skittish so far, they should get more comfortable.

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Tue Dec 15, 2020 4:27 pm

Sinister-Kisses wrote:I'd be more concerned with only having 4...also, the tank looks on the small size for a decent group of demasoni like they really need to be kept. What size is the tank, is it a bowfront?


The tank is a 46 gallons bow front (36 x 16 x 20). I plan to buy a 75 gallons next summer. I was told 4 was a good number so if ever it doesn’t work they will be rehomed or more added. For now I’m giving a chance for everyone to adjust. I plan to add 3-4 white tail Acei (juveniles) soon as a last group until I get the 75 gallons.

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Tue Dec 15, 2020 4:29 pm

noki wrote:The tank decor is all light/ white, and cichlids tend to match the bottom. A white bottom the Demasoni may look more washed out. A dark bottom the Demasoni may look more black.

They all seem a bit skittish so far, they should get more comfortable.


I had a dark blue background but removed it because the fish were new and doing a lot of glass surfing because it caused a lot of reflection on the sides. I plan on putting it back on when the fish have all settled.

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Wed Dec 16, 2020 8:30 pm

The odds of only 4 dems getting along, long-term are pretty slim. Good luck.

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Wed Dec 16, 2020 11:29 pm

Sinister-Kisses wrote:The odds of only 4 dems getting along, long-term are pretty slim. Good luck.


Maybe your right, we’ll see. I know many LFS are not trustable, but this is the advice I was given by a cichlid store owner. Why would they lie to me if they want me as a returning customer ?

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Thu Dec 17, 2020 1:22 am

Might not be lying. Genuinely may not know better. There are thousands of cichlid species, it's impossible to know everything about all of them. Always best to do your own research before buying a species you aren't personally experienced with rather than relying on one stranger who may or may not know what they're talking about. Dems need to be in large groups of their own species to be successful long term, or a single dem in a mixed mbuna tank.

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Thu Dec 17, 2020 11:26 am

I have owned demasoni since 2005 and I do find they do better in large groups. I like a minimum of 12. I tried and failed with a group of 9. You might be safe with one male and seven females...my group of 9 may have had extra males.

I also learned about bloat with my group of 9. And they got along for months (9 months from purchase) until problems developed, but then things moved quickly.

Re: New demasoni not coloring up

Wed Dec 23, 2020 11:28 pm

Sinister-Kisses wrote:Might not be lying. Genuinely may not know better. There are thousands of cichlid species, it's impossible to know everything about all of them. Always best to do your own research before buying a species you aren't personally experienced with rather than relying on one stranger who may or may not know what they're talking about. Dems need to be in large groups of their own species to be successful long term, or a single dem in a mixed mbuna tank.


I did do my research. I always do and I’m kind of obsessive about it too. I chose to trust this store, as they know cichlids very well. They breed them and have thousands of them in the store. They’ve been doing that for more more than a decade. Other people as well told me they had success with demasoni in their tanks in a similar set-up.

I’m learning as I go but one thing is for sure: changes will be made rapidly in the tank if things degenerate. The last thing I want is a blood bath. I like my tanks as peaceful as possible.
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