General Aquaria Discussion • Cichlid Newbie Stocking Ideas

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Cichlid Newbie Stocking Ideas

Postby cruzi » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:18 pm

I am getting back into fish keeping after a 6 year misguided attempt at a 10 gallon (complete with clown-vomit gravel and an angelfish), followed by a few years of no fish, then finally keeping fish for research in a lab (Poecilia latipinna). (Basically I know what I'm doing in terms of water chemistry and general fish keeping, but I'm brand new to properly keeping cichlids) Last weekend, I bought a 40 breeder (36"x18" footprint) on sale, and I'm slowly accumulating equipment while it's on sale before moving across town then setting up in June.

I'm really split on what I want exactly. I would prefer at least one of the species in the tank to be interactive with me (kind of a wet-pet). I also want to aim for kind of a biotope aquarium, so no CA cichlids and Buenos Aires tetras.

1) Lake Tanganyika tank (half open sand bed with shells, half rocks with some implanted terra cotta "caves"
Neolamprologus multifasciatus OR Lamprologus ocellatus
Altolamprologus calvus
Julidochromis regani (or whatever species my local store carries)

2) New World/West African Tank (one of these, plus catfish and dither fish)
Firemouth pair
Convict pair
Rainbow pair
Festivum pair
Jewel Pair
Krib pair

Something else to complicate matters, I'm a master's student and will be moving across the US when I finish up (likely May/June 2018) to start my PhD (after which, I will probably be moving cross-country again). So I really need fish that aren't going to be super fussy (looking at you Rams)

Finally, if I end up with breeding pairs, how can I make sure that none survive to maturity? Maybe one day I'll breed cichlids, but being a grad student, I'm not flush with money, and I'm extremely short on time. So raising fry is not going to be an option. (I know that people who keep platies/swordtails sometimes keep bumblebee catfish to eat the livebearer fry. Would that work with smaller SA cichlids? Is there an equivalent for West Africa/CA?)
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Re: Cichlid Newbie Stocking Ideas

Postby DJRansome » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:28 pm

It's a small tank (36" is limiting) so some of the species you mention would work...but for the Tangs...not all three. And for the West Africans, the jewel pair would work but I'd be afraid they would kill any dithers and not sure what dither would be from the same biotope anyway.

So hoping those who know those new world/west African fish will chime in.

In many cases the babies will be eaten by the other fish. For example Julidochromis and shellies. The parents will raise any survivor fry in the tank with no special effort...all you would have to do is remove adults when there get to be too many. You LFS may be thrilled to give you store credit for them once/year or so.
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Re: Cichlid Newbie Stocking Ideas

Postby cruzi » Mon Apr 24, 2017 12:39 pm

What about a wet pet setup? I would love to have a fish (or two?) that interact with me when I walk up to the tank. My LFS has some really pretty honduran red points, as well as a beautiful festivum.

I would probably keep cichlid with some dithers (mollies w/red point/firemouth/convict, tetras w/festivum, something west-African w/kribs)
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