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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Setting up a 55 gallon with an eheim 2217 canister. I only have 4 cichlids and they are as follows
1 female Kenyi (1.5 inches)
1 female White Cobalt Zebra (5 inches)
1 unsexed Orange Blotch Zebra (1.5 inches)
1 Unsexed Orange Red Zebra (3 inches)

How should I go about stocking? I would like to keep between 15 and 20 Mbunas in this tank, Currently there is no aggression, But I would like to add a handful of unsexed Juveniles for the next weeks, I get Juveniles for $3.99 at about an inch long. Other species I am looking at are Cobalt Blue Zebras, Electric Blue Johannis, and Yellow Labs. I have plenty of rockwork as well.
 

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Hi and Welcome to C-F!!

What are your plans with this tank? Are you looking for both males and females or mixed gender as the number and species of fish will change based on what you are trying to accomplish?
 

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Further, all your fish so far are Metriaclima. So whether all one gender or mixed gender, you may have some aggression issues with the fish you have already.

Also regardless of stocking species you probably don't want to exceed 15 individuals. Less for all-one-gender.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Deeda said:
Hi and Welcome to C-F!!

What are your plans with this tank? Are you looking for both males and females or mixed gender as the number and species of fish will change based on what you are trying to accomplish?
I understand creating Harems will curb aggression greatly and increase my chances of survial greatly, So I have looked into just keeping the different Variants of Zebras. I plan to go to my LFS this weekend and check out what he has as far as cobalt blue zebras and more red zebras. If a Harem is not necessary, then I would like to accomplish an active tank with lots of great colors. Bear with me, I'm new to cichlids.
 

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For a harem you would stock 1m:4f of just the one species.

So you already have 4 species in the same genus. Ideally each harem group would be from a different genus:
Metriaclima lombardoi
Metriaclima callainos
Metriaclima estherae blotch
Metriaclima estherae

In a 55G with mixed gender you would want 15 fish and 3 species with 1m:4f of each.

You would choose one Metriaclima (callainos if you want yellow labs), and then for the other 2 species you would choose a different genus. Like Labidochromis caeruleus for example.

Kenyi (lombardoi) and johannii are too aggressive to be kept in a 55G IMO. Go for a 75G that is 48 x 18 if you want to keep them.

If you want to start over and do all-male to get the most color and variety...I would switch to haps and peacocks and skip the mbuna. For a single gender tank, plan to stock around 10 individuals that look nothing alike. Note that an all-male tank is more difficult than a mixed gender tank.
 
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