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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
hi

Just after peoples opinions on stocking rates for my 6ft tank. The tank is 183cmx70cmx60cm approx 750 litres (roughly 197 US gallons). I have 2 eheim 2217 filters and an otto internal power filter 2000l/ph. I am thinking around 50 mbuna but was after others opinions.

thanks
 

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Depends on the species you choose. 50 fish might work with dwarfs and/or peaceful species, but might be a problem with crabros, for example.
 

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I have 38 fish in a 80 gallon much smaller than what you have.

in my opinion, you should be ok because you have the space and filtration, but it depends more on the species you choose and numbers of each.
 

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50 mbuna sounds like a lot but in a tank that big it should be okay. It would depend on the species and tank layout, too. If there are plenty of hiding spots, you should be okay.

I'd avoid similar-looking species with high aggression levels. Your tank is big enough you could even do a nice hap/peacock and mbuna mix, it'd give you some variety.

One thing I would recommend is looking at some Acei, they like to use the height of the tank and most mbuna don't go up that high.
 

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DJRansome said:
Depends on the species you choose. 50 fish might work with dwarfs and/or peaceful species, but might be a problem with crabros, for example.
A very, very important point! Right on the ball. :thumb:

baza, what mbuna have caught your eye? Even give us a hint as to what colors you'd like to see in your tank, please.

Without knowing what you like, here are some species I would look into (I'm assuming this is just a show tank - not for breeding purposes).

Cynotilapia - one or two species
Labidochromis - one species
Labeotropheus - one species
Copadichromis - one species
Pseudotropheus - one or two species

I have a 100 gallon stock tank (approx. 48" X 24" X 30") that houses this list plus more. There is very little aggression. The key to overstocking is keeping the water clean. :D

Check the profiles on this forum and/or on-line stores, then let everyone know what catches your eye.
 

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That is going to be one very active and fun to watch tank with 50 mbuna! I'm jealous!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
hi

Thanks for all the responses. Spyder I am looking to get as many different species of mbuna that i can possibly get. I really want demasoni but i dont want to get 15 of them because that reduces the amount of other species i can get. Yer it will be a show tank unfortunately I dont have enough money or small tanks for a breeding set up with fry etc. Right now I have

1 albino auratus
1 normal auratus
2 red zebras
2 peacocks
and 2 n leleupi

Now i know the peacocks and the leleupi are not mbuna but i like the leleupi especially, and my male peacock holds his own he is second in charge. The leleupi are boss of this tank. I will definetly be getting some yellow labs. i have no blue yet so I am also on he hunt for acei, saulosoi (spelling) and some socolofi.

cheers
 

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I you want as many species as possible, go all male and get only one each. Read the all male article in the library.

Already you have a mix that may have low odds for success. Auratus are among the most aggressive mbuna and usually peacocks do not color up or thrive in the same tank. Maybe the fact that it is a 72" tank will help.

Also mbuna do not pair, so stick with one male of each species. Otherwise you will need groups of each species, and the most aggressive the species, the more females you need to spread aggression. For example, cichlidaholic tells of her husband keeping auratus for several years and with limited success in ratios like 1m:7f I believe. Fogelhund just got rid of the auratus in his 75G mbuna tank (see it in My Tanks)...too aggressive.

Most mbuna need 3 females for every male. More aggressive ones like zebras I wouldn't do less than 4 females for every male.

The fish you have chosen so far are full-size (not dwarf). why_spyder seems to accomplish the impossible (LOL), but with fish that are 6" at maturity, I would be thinking more like 35 individuals.
 

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Your not gonna be able to get attached to these fish...to start with anyway.
It's going to be a case of trial and error as well as some good advice like that you are getting from DJRansom as to which fish to not even bother with due to aggression.

Should be a good experience look forward to seeing the end result...Good luck
 

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DJRansome said:
Already you have a mix that may have low odds for success. Auratus are among the most aggressive mbuna and usually peacocks do not color up or thrive in the same tank. Maybe the fact that it is a 72" tank will help.
....
but with fish that are 6" at maturity, I would be thinking more like 35 individuals.
:thumb:

Great point. Larger, more aggressive fish will really lower population sizes.
 

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Go big or go home my friend :lol:

Personally, I'd keep fewer species, with larger groups instead. You could fit a lot of demasoni and yellow labs in a tank that big!

There is a member on here (forget who) that advocates keep much higher numbers than you've been recommended so far. IIRC, he (she?) advocated keeping 60+ mbuna in a 90 gallon....that gives you room for 120 mbuna or so, if my math is correct. Seems like a lot to me, but it's certainly food for thought. Given adequate filtration, I'd personally go for at least 60+ in a 200 gallon setup.

I keep the following in my 90: (sorry for the common names, too lazy to look up the latin name)
yellow labs
p. socolofi
rusties
p. acei
c. moori

I have no idea where I am numbers wise due to breeding by both the labs and socolofi, but I'd say my total number is somewhere around 30-ish. Feeding time is a blur of fish, and I've got a LOT of rock, so getting an accurate count would be impossible without taking everyone out of the tank. 50 should be a good starting point for a tank that size.

Good luck :thumb:
 

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I think if you go crazy and add as many fish as you possibly can the end result looks like a jumbled mess.

I think if you start conservitively with about 35 to 40 fish then you will be on the right track. Once you have all them in and all is going good then it might be a good idea to add some fish then, if thats possible
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
hi

Yeah i plan on taking it slow I am not gunna go out and get 50 fish and throw them in there. I am not sure what to do now I am half keen to watch them breed which means i would have to have larger numbers and fewer species. Lets say i want to breed some fish. Would 10 species work with 5 of each species for example. This would give me 50 fish with a lot less colour than a display tank but....

I am a bit scared that if i go for a breeding setup firstly that they will start breeding out of control and I wont be able to keep up with them. And i dont really have a proper breeding setup well i have plastic tubs that can be converted to breeding tanks if i get a few sponge filters. I would want to avoid hybridisation if i went with this setup which limits the species. I already have 2 red zebras and i want yellow labs but these species are know for cross breeding right. What about socolofi? This is a basic list of 8 possible species that I have interest in if i was to breed please tell me what you think about cross breeding of these species.

auratus x 5
red zebra x 5
yellow lab x 5
socolofi x 5
acei x 5
leleupi x 5 (tang)
saulosi x 5
demasoni x ?????

My guess of high risk cross breeding fish are the zebras and yellows and socolofi. And the saulosi and demasoni. Would having them in groups of 5 and in a tank this big minimise hybridisation given the correct m/f ratio.

thanks
 

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Red Zebra...Not if you want your Labs
Leleupi....Never seen it done so thats doubtful

You should get away with:
M. Callianos......sex ratio is important, males don't usually tolerate each other 1M/4F
Auratus......same sex ratio as above
Socofoli......same sex ratio
Acei.....never a worry
Demasoni........No less then 12 atleast
Ps. Flavus.......Aggressive fish should get away with it 1M/4F
Yellow Lab.....never a worry

If you loose the Demasoni you will open the gate's to 1 Elongatus species and an Afra species.
Elongatus females are quite attractive and ratios aren't that important whereas some Afra females are quite dull. Love the Afras but. You may gat away with adding Maingano's without the Demasoni also

After all that, cross breeding is always possible, the chance percentage wise i can't say but it wouldn't be that high. It will make it risky if you are planning on distributing the fry, you will have to hold on to the fry to make sure they colour up properly and even then you never no.

Also with so many different groups of fish be prepared to have hundreds of fry......I could deal with that :lol:
 

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If you're concerned about getting over run with fry, just let Mom spit in the tank. That way, if a fish is strong and cunning enough to survive without becoming lunch, then they deserve to remain as part of the tank. If not, then it's a high protein meal for someone. :eek:

Seriously, if you put enough rock in there to make it a true mbuna tank, you'll have a &^$# of a time getting holding females out anyway, so you would save yourself a LOT of time by just letting them spit in the tank. BTDT. All that rock also gives the babies a hiding place and a fighting chance. :eek: If they make it, and grow to adult hood, and you become overstocked, you will have nice adults to trade in for equipment :thumb: Allows you to weed out the less attractive adults as well. Sort of a selective breeding operation if you will.

Personally, I'd go with a few less species and more per group. It might be hard to find 10 compatible species that don't cross breed AND get along well. Maybe 7-8 species with 6-8 per group? No advice on Demasoni here, never kept them.
 

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200 gallons is a lot of room to play around with for mbuna. With heavy rockwork, good filtration and the species that you've mentioned so far, I'd recommend something like:

20-30 Demasoni
15 yellow labs
8 Red Zebras (1-2M, 6-7F)
8-10 Acei
8 Auratus (1M, 7F) - but you could save yourself some potential headaches and leave these out.
6-7 Syno. Multipunctatus for crowd control and syno schools.

Grand total of about 75 fish

In my experience, labs and zebras get along fine, no breeding problems.

For the Leleupi, I'd find a new home. Beautiful fish, but I don't know how they'd fare amongst the mbuna over the long term.

For fry control, the synos are excellent at keeping populations down if you let the mother's just spit in the tank a suggested above.

Hope this helps.
 

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I think Demasonian's got a good point concerning the labs and zebras potential cross breeding. Due to your tank size, you can keep bigger groups than a lot of us. As long as you keep bigger groups, it's unlikely that a horny zebra :)lol:) will step outside his group or vice versa. I've never kept the two species in the same tank, but would be willing to be that hybridization is much more likely in smaller groups.

That said, I would find it ethically challenging to sell fry later on if the possibility of crossbreeding exists.......
 
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