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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've decided to do Eretmodus cyanostictus for my Tanganyikan tank. I know they are aggressive with each other. Is it in their best interest to keep only one? Or should I take my chances and try to get a pair? I don't care either way, I just want happy fish.
Also, I want to make sure the tank is ready for them. I'd like to get fish in the tank for awhile first to make sure the conditions are right. Debating between a hardy schoolers like danios or rainbowfish, maybe livebearers, but my perfectionism hates that they wouldn't be tanganyikan.
Other options:
- Neolamprologus gracilis. I hear they stay smaller and aren't too aggressive. Plus I love them
- Shell dwellers such as brevis "sunspot".
- Neolamprologus caudopunctatus
- Altolamprologus calvus or compressiceps (different diet requirements I know, but less aggressive)
Wish there were more small open water swimmers from tanganyika. I want my Eretmodus to be happy with whatever else I put in there. Any suggestions?
 

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The Gobies are a pairing fish and even an established bonded pair can be disrupted if moved. I have been lucky in the past with buying a male and a female that established a bond but it's not guaranteed. The best way to do this is to buy half a dozen juvies and let them pair up.
Not sure about tankmates as I don't know what size tank you have.
Whatever you decide, make sure the tank is properly cycled before adding any fish.
P.S, Gobies are great fish to keep.
 

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noddy said:
The Gobies are a pairing fish and even an established bonded pair can be disrupted if moved. I have been lucky in the past with buying a male and a female that established a bond but it's not guaranteed. The best way to do this is to buy half a dozen juvies and let them pair up.
Not sure about tankmates as I don't know what size tank you have.
Whatever you decide, make sure the tank is properly cycled before adding any fish.
P.S, Gobies are great fish to keep.
What size tank would you recommend for a pair? Could the coexist with caudopunctatus give proper tank size?
 

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james1983 said:
noddy said:
The Gobies are a pairing fish and even an established bonded pair can be disrupted if moved. I have been lucky in the past with buying a male and a female that established a bond but it's not guaranteed. The best way to do this is to buy half a dozen juvies and let them pair up.
Not sure about tankmates as I don't know what size tank you have.
Whatever you decide, make sure the tank is properly cycled before adding any fish.
P.S, Gobies are great fish to keep.
What size tank would you recommend for a pair? Could the coexist with caudopunctatus give proper tank size?
I have never kept caudopunctatus so I really don't know. The smallest tank I have kept Gobies in is a 5', 120g tank.
Even in my 6' 210g tank they still managed to be at each others throats a lot of the time, and they were a bonded pair.
I would probably try them in a 4' tank but only if it was 18" wide. But that I would have a plan in case it didn't work out.
 

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Happy? No, I wouldn't think so. Are you thinking of these for your 20g long? If so, I would look at something else.
Far to small a tank imo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the reply noddy. My original question was on their behavior. Since they are aggressive with each other I wouldn't think they would like to be in a tank together. Or is it like Malawi where they fight but if you have enough hiding spots they don't and live happily? Just trying to figure that part out. Sounds like if they pair they are fine together? So just one pair per tank no matter the size of the tank? Not hearing a lot about how the size of the tank helps or hurts in the aggression. Just trying to understand that part. I hate watching fish fight all day. The Eretmodus are doing that in the huge tank at the fish store.
You are correct. I do have a 20 gallon long. This is a starter tank and is not my intention of keeping any fish in for their entire lives (well, maybe some small schoolers or shell dwellers). Just want to assess the fish behaviors, needs, and health before transferring to a larger show tank. I've been keeping fish for 25 years but have never kept tanganyikans. I know some of my questions make me sound new to this since this biotope is new to me and all my supplies have been pretty old school. I'm starting some fresh tanks with all new stuff, since I can afford nice things now, and want to do this "new to me" biotope with the utmost care and consideration.
Hope that helps clear up what information I'm looking to get.
 

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They can, occasionally be aggressive towards each other even as a bonded pair. If they are in a tank and do not create a bonded pair they will most likely kill each other down to a single male (this is what I have experienced in a 5' 120g tank). The reason for needing a large tank is that if and when they "fall out", the smaller (usually female) fish will have somewhere to hide or escape to when being picked on. When they are getting along they will swim with each other and hang out in the rocks together.
They are bi-parental mouthbrooders and the female will incubate the eggs in her bucal cavity for about 7 days (if I remember correctly) and then pass them off to the male to incubate for another couple of weeks. In my experience, when the male has the eggs he will chase the female all over the tank trying to get her to take them back.
Sometimes, like with Xeno Papilios, a bonded pair can benefit from having another sub dominant pair in the tank to spread out aggression. This doesn't always work out and the dominant male could end up killing the other pair.
I have kept a single male due to him killing off all his tankmates and eventually his mate. He was in a 5', 120g tank and would use the entire tank to swim and graze on the rocks. If I could have found him a mate I would have done. The behaviour they exhibit as a pair is fascinating and I to be honest, once witnessing it I don't believe the male was happy to be on his own.
Again, these are just my experiences. I have never used a smaller tank to house them so I can only comment on what I know.
Cheers,
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
My tank cycled completely this week and after much deliberation, and hours of daily research, I decided on some small Altolamprologus Compressiceps Red Fin. Based on the information I got from this forum I realized that I can't do Eretmodus right now. I looked into some shell dwellers and prefer these guys to any of the smaller, more scrappy ones. These will probably take a good year or so until I'll need to move them to a larger aquarium. So far they are active and eating well.
 

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I had a pair in a 55g community tank years ago. They were fine for a year or two then one killed the other after I rearranged tank with new tank mates. I think I sold the single one at a local auction. Its too bad they're so finicky because they're some of the most interesting African cichlids around.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I love them. Another similar one that I love is the west african cichlid Steatocranus casuarius (aka buffalo head or block head). That is one of my favorites and what led me to find the Eretmodus when I set up my tang tank. I used to keep them back in the day, but I was an idiot and didn't set up my tank right and eventually killed them. I'll probably try them again soon. If I remember correctly they are more shy than the eretmodus.
 
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