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Am I doin this right....

5690 Views 24 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  xclub
3 questions. First Im about to transfer my 55 gal in to my new 90 :dancing: My stocking list is below so far my fish have been thriving with minimal aggersion. There all about 8-12mo a few have reproduced I have gave away surviving fry. After transfer (90gal) plan on maybee keeping few fry from all speiecs . 1. Do I have any out of place species/ non compatible that will create probs as they mature?
1m/2f P. saulosi
1m/1f Cynotilapia sp. "Lion"
1m/1f L. caeruleus
1m/1f P. socolofi (Albino)
1m/2f P. sp. (Acei)
1m/2f P. Demasoni
2. Is this enough filtration for 90gal with stocking list ? Aquaclear70-Emporer400Bio-Xp3
3. :idea: Want to add something a little more colorful or bigger 6" Can I add trio or a single Male Female ? Aulonocara or Protomelas :-? Open for all suggestions comments Fish have gave me many hours of enjoyment :popcorn: Just want to give them the same :thumb:
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I would not add any species, in fact I would lose one. Then I would add females until I have 6 of each and 15 Demasoni.
Wow that would be 50 fish :eek: .....I think way too many . But I will keep some of the fry (females) and get the #'s up around to 4-1 f/m Ratio. 1 of my Demasoni happens to be holding right now I will probably strip her in a week or two...that should up my demasoni #'s. I Would really like to add 1 m/f of ruby red or orange Peacock
I come up with 39 fish. Let's say the species you lose are the labs. You would have 15 Demasoni, 6 Saulosi, 6 Cynotilapia, 6 Socolofi and 6 Acei.

Mbuna are not pairing fish. As they mature (have you had them for a year?), the males will harass the single females until they are sick/die. You need multiple females for each male to spread the aggression.

Or if you prefer the variety and want to add peacocks/haps, then I would keep one of each fish and get rid of all the females. With peacocks/haps I would keep only the labs and the acei.
With regards to filtration, my aquaclear 70 did NOT fit over the lip on my 90 gallon. Just wanted to give you a heads up on that, as it was an unpleasant surprise to me.

As a result, my 90 is currently filtered with an XP3 and a penguin 330. That's it. So far, so good. I'm mildly uncomfortable with this, but haven't decided what I want to add yet. Probably either a AC 110 or a Eheim 2217. I guess I'm in no huge hurry because everyone is doing well, multiple females are holding, and water parameters are always right where they should be.

Most people on this site will tell you filtration should be approx 10x your tank size. If you can fit all three filters onto the tank, you'll fit that "requirement". Might be worth test fitting that AC 70 though.
1.No, they are all ok, they can live together. I must advise you to add some more females!

2.Try it test it and you will see, nothing bad can happen to them even if the filtration is not as good as it should be, BUT be prepared, if you see that it is not working as it should replace it. I think that you need a better one but fist test it do not throw away the money if you don't have to.

3.My advice is not to mix Non Mbuna with Mbuna Cichlids, you know the reasons, feeding habits, aggression…
Lol I guess I was thinking 6F + 1m= 7 x 5species=35 + 15 Demasoni= 50 :D Over all I have grown attatched to the List I will add some females...About that Aquaclear If you trim 1/8 of the lip it slides down. The intake is like under 2" wide then the water return lip clears it then u just add a 1/4" wide 1/8" sliver on the right egde works excellent. Only bad thing is you cant move it around. I bought my tank used and it all ready had some small notches cut for tubes I just widen one it works great for a very small sacrifice. :thumb: So Im already having a slight problem with fry what fish can I add to cut down on fry #'s and whats tha max #'s for a 90gal?
Concerning fry, if you have them/when you have them give them away; sell them, whatever…simply as that, either to your friends or to some shop or something else.

Concerning the # in 90 gallon = without any serious problem up to 65-70 pcs. BUT I advise you to have no more than 9-10 species.

Many will "attack" me for saying this but if you have enough rocks, caves, free swimming space you can have more fish, BUT you must be advised that you have in mind following: smaller species are advisable, frequent water change is a must do and on 6 fishes 1 male is an ideal proportion but having 2 (looking back at your list of species that you have/will have) is not irrational.

I know that many cichlid keepers do not approve this number of fishes in such aq. but there is no problem with this. It is true that some species cannot grow into their full length in a crowded Aq, for example some my Ps. Socolofi are 3 years old and they reached their max size for that tank and it is 4.5 inches and they are still pretty, they breed, live and they have their own territory in 85 gallon aquarium.

The most important thing in Cichlid aquarium is the length (minimum 1meter) and the bottom surface for this amount of fishes it must be at least 55cm. If you can provide such aquarium than the number of 65-70 SMALLER Mbuna is not a problem if not stick to the max of 50-55.
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…and one more thing, if you cannot have fry (don't want them or something else) than do not strip them from female, leave them in females mouth, when the time is right she will set them free and perhaps several will survive. The ones that survive they clever and shifty and they deserve to be a part of your beloved fish shoal.

Lake Malawi is a huge lake, have in mind following: Mbuna do not live in all parts of the lake, the concentration of Mbuna in particular parts of the lakes shore area is on a huge level=a lot of them live in relatively small area. This means that they constantly fight over territory supremacy (fight inside one species and fight between two and more species)

They grow according to the amount of food in their area and many of them never get to grow in their full size. Rarely they grow in a full length as described in some cichlid books (a length they can grow in artificial environment/aquarium).

Chasing around, aggression, defending and gaining territory, fighting, killing each other…it is all a part of their natural behavior. You can change several things, you can change the FACT that sometimes they HAVE to kill each other for territorial supremacy by having less aggressive cichlids or by "overstocking" your tank, but they are hard core fishes and you have to accept them for what they are.

Just give it a go…try with more cichlids in 90gal tank and observe them (observing fishes is a huge part of Cichlid Keeping) , check out their behavior and if you think that you absolutely must intervene (cut the number, have more caves and rocks, or something else) do it.
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xclub said:
Concerning fry, if you have them/when you have them give them away; sell them, whatever…simply as that, either to your friends or to some shop or something else.

Concerning the # in 90 gallon = without any serious problem up to 65-70 pcs. BUT I advise you to have no more than 9-10 species.

Many will “attackâ€
The other thing that justifies the large numbers (5 species, 39 fish) in your case is that you have 3 dwarf species: Demasoni, Saulosi and Cynotilapia.

I wondered about the Demasoni/Saulosi combination, but some posters claim success and I've never tried it so I did not comment.

I let my Mom's spit in the tank, but I still have too many survivor fry to leave them all in. Especially when I had Socolofi, mine were heavy breeders.
First and foremost, the number of fish you keep depends entirely on the species you choose. That is always consideration number one. The addition of one rogue species can destroy whatever harmony you have, no matter what the number is.
I agree but the species that he mentioned can live together without any bigger problems...

Arbitrarily stating that 10 species would be the maximum in this tank, regardless if they are small species or not, is irresponsible. There are many species that will not tolerate the presence of other certain species. Case in point; I wouldn't keep Ps. demasoni and Ps. saulosi in the same tank. The males are too similar in appearance and won't tolerate each others company. I would suspect the same of Cynotilapia sp. "lion", although you're not likely to find any of those anyway.
I partly agree you cannot have a species that cannot tolerate each other ant those are similar male coloration species, BUT concerning Ps. Demasoni and Ps. saulosi, males are similar and having in mind that tank is 90gal, as big as his, there should be no problem at all.

I don't know did you ever kept them together but I am and they divide the territory as they want it to. Salulosi have it own spot, demasoni its own among them there are fights but not alarming ones. If a Demasoni enter the Saulosi territory and other way arround in spawning time fight is inevitable. Spawning / mixing these two species, never happend to me.

The growth rate of any fish does not depend on the amount of tank mates or the size of the tank. It depends on the health of the fish which can be affected by any number of things, including stature in the hierarchy, diet and water quality.
Also partly agree, BUT if tank is to small you cannot have a big fish, if you have a lot of fishes in one tank, and you don't feed them too much they will not grow to their full size. The competition for the food is huge and the first one to get there will eat...when you feed them, let's say 10 times a chance that one fish will eat "a lot" all 10 times is...let's say 10-15%. I don't say that you should starve them but do not feed them too much. In nature they don't eat every day...

There are several species where male female ration is of little concern such as L. caeruleus and Ps. demasoni, but there are many more species where keeping just two males would be ill-advised. A single male is always best but if you must have multiples, three or more is always better (tank sized dependent of course) to keep any one male from becoming a constant target for the other.
Also I partly agree. One male per 3 females is ok but not with every species. Sometimes it is advisable that you have males and 4-5 females. In my spawning tanks (Ps. saulosi, Ps. demasoni, Ps. Neon Spot, M. lombardoi) I have 2 males and 5 females. I have fights in aquaria but it is normal behavior... In spawning times the subdominant male is not a constant target he is a target but all females are also targeted and the aggression is in excellent balance...

Ps. demasoni are best in large groups of 12 or more, I would choose between them or the Ps. saulosi and lose the Cy. sp. "lion" (not very common anyway) and consider going with perhaps six species total.
Also partly agree I have a tank with 8 demasoni and 6 grown up Lab Caerleus. You just cannot believe how caerleus cut down the aggression. In a group of 12 how many males do you have? In my group of 8 I have 2 males' lots of caves and everything is ok. I don't say that having 12 as a group is not good it is excellent but it is not necessary.

A few to consider that would work with the remaining choices would be Melanochromis cyaneorhabdos, Iodotropheus sprengerae or Labeotropheus trewavasae.
I absolutely agree with you...

There are several non-mbuna fish that can be easily mixed with mbuna. Sciaenochromis fryeri, Otopharynx lithobates and Placidochromis electra are haps I've had no problem mixing with mbuna. Even Aulonocara jacobfreibergi would be fine in this tank with most mbuna.
Again I agree but I would not advise it to the beginner, if flip79 is a beginner, if not give it a try..
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All of you, please don't get me wrong I am not saying that information's and opinions that you are giving here are not true I am just giving my experience.
With Joea I agree in 99% of his post, suggestions… but I must mention that I tried something else, something that I wished to try and I am giving you the results and I just want to add a new perspective, if I can call it this way, into keeping cichlids.

Many friend of mine keep cichlids in a "proper way" but my way isn't bad and I have a good, I may even say excellent results.

With respect to you all please try to understand position since I learned a lot and I just want to say/give/share my knowledge/experience with other respectable Cichlid lovers
xclub - just for clarification purposes......You're advocating up to 65-70 mbuna in a 90 gallon, right? Have you done this before, and if so, do you have pics? I'm not doubting or arguing...more curious to see what that looks like. Are you saying that assuming all dwarf cichlids, or a common mix, like the OP is looking at? Just wondering.
Very nicely put Xclub!! We also do not have the proper listing of fish, but trial and error,(IMO) what works for someone, might not work for someone else because each fishs personality is different, thats what I love about all my fish, I have had to change a few things, because I love my fish, and did not want to get rid of any. Always nice to hear someone elses opinion and experiences.So thank you!!!
Since I don't have the proper camera I cannot put a proper picture here, but here is a picture of one of my tanks.

I just started cleaning this tank…as you can see by the level of water.

I use to have one tank like this in my home, it was 100x43x50 but I have changed it with this one several days ago. A friend of mine gave me the idea how to make it (he gave me above mentioned as a gift) and I made the exact copy of it but this time a larger one !

This one is now in my home it has a special place in my house and in my life...I selected the fish that I think are the best looking one, best colors, best shape...

I hope that in next month or two I will purchase a proper camera and that I will be able to shoot proper photos.

Tank size: 120cm x 50cm x 50cm

In this tank inhabitants are:
-Ps. Ruarwe (neon spot) x9 (3m and 6f)
-Ps. Saulosi x10 (3m and 7f but )
-Lab. Pearlmutt x8 (2m and 6f)
-Ps. Demasoni x12 (I am 100% sure that I have 2 males but since I have several juveniles I cannot tell the exact ratio)
-Ps. Socolofi x 5 (1m and 4f)
-Ps. "Elongatus Chewere" x 6 (still juveniles but I can already tell that I will have 2m and 4f)
And last but not least
-Lab Caerleus x6 (2m and 4f) they are right now in other smaller Aq preparing the water for fry. I prepare the water for fry by keeping several adult fishes in a tank for at least 5-7 days and then I introduce fry in it… (first I prepare water, then add adults…)

Most of cichlids from the list are 3.5 to 5 inches long. I do intend to make some changes, to get some Cynothilapia species instead of some others but for now this is it…

Since I am not able right now to go to the place where I keep my other tanks and spawn cichlids with my friend I hope that this is an "answer" good enough for your question/curiosity.
Once again forgive me for the picture quality…

I must add that I have no deaths caused by fights, I have several fights and stuff but nothing serious. As you can see they have lot of caves (some of them you cannot see they are at the back of the tank).

When one, for example male demasoni chase another demasoni male, subdominant male just "go with the flow, hide either under some rock or cave or among other species and he have no subdominant males have a chance (and they are using it) even to spawned with females. They are happy about it, I am happy about it.
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so if I'm reading that's an 86 gallon tank or so? Not the best with conversions....

Whatever the case, it's somewhere between a 75 and a 90 gallon :lol: I counted 50 fish in your stock list, with 6 more on the way. If it works for you, great.

How high do nitrates get, and what is your water change % and schedule? What kind of filtration? Again, just out of curiosity. The main reason i ask is because that's is much higher levels of stocking than is normally recommended, and was wondering what extra trouble you had to maintain it.

I imagine it's rather striking in person.... :thumb:
When I gave the measures they are the measures of space that fishes directly use, I didn't calculate filter, place for lightning etc.etc. it is only space that fishes use.

Total dimensions of tank are different but I never calculate them (well actually I calculate them when I am making tank :) ) I suppose that when you say (and 99% of forum members say 95 gallon you are giving total tank volume not the fish useable area.

I already told that I am sorry but I am not able to take a picture of other tank that is actually 95.3 gallons again of fish usable area… :(

It works perfectly, as I have already mentioned I have no problems and fishes have no problem either, and that is most important…

For filtration I use two filtration types: a filter that is inside the aquarium and so called "top filter" so that water goes through two filters, both are bio and chemical filters and after that it goes back to the tank. Pretty hard filtration is needed if you want to have so many fishes in this volume.

Concerning water changes, I change water in amount of 25-30% approx every 10 days.

In next couple of days I will be able to do this automatically; a friend of mine made a system and it will be implemented into this or maybe another tank...we shall see.

Our tap water is pretty hard, almost perfect for Malawi Cichlids and I use it directly without any Ph enhancers or stuff like that.

I must admit that every 7-10days I clean the bottom from fecal and that is the *************** job...but I made water flow so good (it was long and painful to achieve this) that I have only one "still water" spot where I have to do this dirty job... 8)
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xclub said:
When I gave the measures they are the measures of space that fishes directly use, I didn’t calculate filter, place for lightning etc.etc. it is only space that fishes use.

Total dimensions of tank are different but I never calculate them (well actually I calculate them when I am making tank :) ) I suppose that when you say (and 99% of forum members say 95 gallon you are giving total tank volume not the fish useable area.

I already told that I am sorry but I am not able to take a picture of other tank that is actually 95.3 gallons again of fish usable area… :(
Oh, ok. Just so we're all on the same page, what is the total tank dimensions? Just to compare apples to apples. If I don't count the space taken up by substrate and rocks, my 90 gallon gets a lot smaller! :eek: I'm surprised that you can get away with that small of a water change, I thought it would be bigger, but it seems to be working for you. Thanks.
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