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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi people, I am in the process of stocking my 55 gallon mbuna tank now and I am looking for suggestions. Here is my current setup...

2 yellow labs
1 red zebra
1 blue cobalt
2 rusty cichlids
1 Melanochromis johannii
1 Elongatus variation?

I am looking to add about 7ish more fish just to crowd them and to cut down on the little agression that there still is, but I am looking for suggestions. I dont plan on distributing fry, so the chances of me getting hybrid babies isnt really an issue. And I am running a homemade wet/dry filter w/overflow, so the tank is very well filtered for that amount of fish.
 

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Do you know the sexes of the fish you currently have in your tank? The zebras, johanni and elongatus should be easy to tell if they are old enough.
 

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It sounds like you might be better off to go with an all male set up, if you want alot of different species.

Have you considered that?

If so, you only want one male of each species. Should any of the "pairs" that you have of a species be the same sex - especially male, you may experience above normal aggression between them, even the more passive species like Yellow labs and Rusties.

Kim
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
well, I have been observing the fish for a couple days now, and after switching a couple fish back to the store and replacing them, all the fish I have now seem to be living very peacefully, there is no aggression between any of them besides occasionally i see the elongatus chasing the zebra around, but he stops after a couple seconds. I wasnt planning on adding any more of the johannii because I had another male in there and they got overly aggressive, so I took the more aggressive one out and everything seems to be working well now. The zebra, i am not totally sure how to tell if its a male or female.

Plus, I am thinking of just keeping it to these species, I am really wondering which ones I could add on to without making anything more aggressive, I am thinking of adding more of the reds because the elong seems to chase it around a bit more, so maybe 4-5 targets will be less appealing than 1 alone.
 

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cichlidaholic said:
It sounds like you might be better off to go with an all male set up, if you want alot of different species.

Have you considered that?

If so, you only want one male of each species. Should any of the "pairs" that you have of a species be the same sex - especially male, you may experience above normal aggression between them, even the more passive species like Yellow labs and Rusties.

Kim
Kim...I dont think its good to have an all male tank with those aggressive species, specially in a 55G, but that's just me. I think 75G is the minimum for an all male tank. :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
would something like this work out people
consider all these would be unsexed and about 3ish inches in length

3 estherae (red)
2 blue cobalts
3 yellow labs

I think the one I thought was an elongatus is actually a zebra, so that kind of changes things a bit. and would it be a bad idea to add more of the metriaclima zebras, I have seen that they are rather aggressive, so I am not sure if it would be such a good idea to add more. I have one in there all alone and he's already a bit on the aggressive side.
 

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jhunbj said:
cichlidaholic said:
It sounds like you might be better off to go with an all male set up, if you want alot of different species.

Have you considered that?

If so, you only want one male of each species. Should any of the "pairs" that you have of a species be the same sex - especially male, you may experience above normal aggression between them, even the more passive species like Yellow labs and Rusties.

Kim
Kim...I dont think its good to have an all male tank with those aggressive species, specially in a 55G, but that's just me. I think 75G is the minimum for an all male tank. :wink:
I don't think it's an ideal situation, either, but obviously the OP wants (and already has) more species than it would be advisable to turn into breeding groups for a tank this size.

AND...Looking at the original stock list from the first post, if you removed extras, 2 out of the 6 fish would not be overly aggressive. There could be an increase of aggression amongst the zebra variants, but it won't be as bad as it will be if you leave a couple of females in there! :thumb:

I've done it before with a 55G, with more aggressive species than the OP has. I found the all male set up boring, but it worked just fine. :wink:

To the OP...Do you mean only having those 3 species in your last post?

If you're interested in breeding (which you haven't said), that isn't a good mix. If you're just after colour and not planning to distribute fry, it would be best to increase the group sizes for each species. This applies only if you plan to keep these 3 species only in the tank.

Kim
 

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ok, you MUST do following:

go to the store, if possible a different one not in the same where you purchased these cichlids if not go to the same store, and purchase at least 3 of every species that you all ready have! If the size of already purchased cichlids is the same as the ones that you will purchase excellent, if not, it is still not a problem but try to purchase, if you can chose, approx same size fishes.

If a store stuff can identify gender, ask them to sell you one male and two females. If not, after several months,(2-5 depending on species), you should be able to identify genders and then you will be able to cut the numbers down simply by selling or by giving away the ones that you don't need (since it is quite offend that when you purchase 3-5 cichlids of same species that you will get more males than you need).

DO NOT GIVE UP THE FISHES THAT YOU ALLREADY HAVE!

Add several more of the same species and you will be pleased, and finally they will be pleased
:fish: :dancing:
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
thanks guys, I was thinking of adding more of the same species I already have, we are going out looking today for more. All the fish in the tank now seem to get along really well with the exception that the zebra? is chasing around the estherae a bit more than I'd like to see, she got a couple good nips in his/her tail and I'd like to see that stop.

I dont plan on breeding, or distributing, I would like to see them in larger groups, notn as an all male tank, but I dont plan on distributing the fry or anything of that sort.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
well good news, I went out today, bought 3 estherae, and 3 more cobalt blues. The aggression in the tank has gone waaaaaaaaaay down and everyone seems to be living very happily now, much less bullying, and everyone has calmed down, so I think just adding a few more was what I needed to do, thanks for the help everyone :fish: :dancing: :thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
well i know, it just seemed that the overall aggression is being more evenly distributed now, so all of them are given a chance to cool off and rest instead of just being chased around all day.
 
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