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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Mixed SA/CA -

I posted a topic about a month ago about my 75 gallon aquarium and got alot of helpful responses. The fish in my signature have not changed and they are doing fine with little to no aggression. The hues of the 75 gallon tank would look better in the room the 200 gallon is in but, since the 200 gallon aquarium is built in to the wall, I cannot switch them. Basically I've decided to change the 200 to SA/CA and leave the 75 as is.

I've taken a stroll through cichlidae.com (and I know that alot of the fish profiles on that website go by different names on this forum and an even greater number are not generally available in the hobby) and picked out fish that I find generally attractive:

Tomocichlia asfraci
Paraneetroplus bulleri
Cryptoheros panamensis
Hypsophrys nicaraguensis
Paratheraps synspilus
Paratheraps melanurus
Thorichthys pasionis
Vieja regani
Australoheros tembe (is this fish commonly available in the hobby?)
Crenicichla marmorata
Crenicichlia compressiceps
Geophagus argyrostictus
Geophagus brasiliensis
Geophagus surinamensis
Satanoperca daemon
Satanoperca leucosticta
Uaru amphiacanthoides
Uaru fernandezyepezi

I'd like to have at least 10 single speciemens in the aquarium plus a group of a species of eartheater and am ill-equipped with knowledge to construct a good list. Ideas?
 

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whatever you go for, I would stick in the crenicichla marmarota, beautiful fish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
DeadFishFloating: 6' X ~20" 200 Gallon bowfront (custom)

MetalHead: I agree, that particular species is amazingly beautiful.
 

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Some thoughts:

Deffinately go for some Cr. mamorata ... awesome fish, beautiful colors and patterns ... powerfull fish. With them though, I'd rule out the two bitesized (read able to swallow whole) fish on your list: Cr. compressiceps and Cryptoheros panamensis.

For Geos: avoid the two Satanoperca species ... both need large groups and S. leucosticta tends to be a shy, easily bullied species even by dwarf cichlids. S. daemon are probably my favorite fish, but are touchy regarding water conditions (extremely low pH and ultra clean water {Yes TFG, I know the one in your 800 gal is an exception!!! :p }). Go with the Geophagus altifrons instead, a nice group of them (what is most commonly sold as surms).

The Uaru fernandezyepezi is rare, hence expensive and even more shy than the normal Uaru usually, but the regular ones would be fine with Geo's and Marm's.

I've only seen Australoheros tembe on a mail order list once. So might be hard to find.

The centrals I haven't kept, so can't really offer any ideas there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I cannot find any information on Australoheros tembe...
I like the Cr. compressiceps more than Cr. marmorata so should I go with a group of those instead?

This is what I'm thinking right now:

4-5 Cr. compressiceps
4-5 A. tembe - if I can locate some and if they are of appropriate size
A group of G. altifrons - should the male/female ratio be similar to that of Malawian cichlids? Perhaps 2/6 or 3/7?
4-5 C. panamensis
1 P. bulleri - if this species is actually available anywhere
1 T. pasionis

22-27 fish. Would that be fully stocked for a 200 gallon SA/CA tank, or could I fit in more?
 

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G'day wmayes,

I'll borrow a line from one of the other members here, unfortunately it's easier for us to offer advice on what is probably not possible rather than what is possible. (It think may have been Dutch Dude or DirtBlackSocks who said it).

I'd like to have at least 10 single speciemens in the aquarium plus a group of a species of eartheater and am ill-equipped with knowledge to construct a good list. Ideas?
DeadFishFloating: 6' X ~20" 200 Gallon bowfront (custom)
While 200 gallons certainly suggests you could stock quite a few cichlids, your tank dimensions suggest that it is a rather tall tank, and I believe the floor plan will limit the number of medium to large cichlids you could keep. When you said 200 gallons I was hoping it was a standard 8 foot by 2 foot tank, the extra length certainly would have been in your favour.

I think you will have to re-asses your over all stocking levels. Most cichlids tend to live in the bottom third of our tanks and I just think 10 individual cichlids and a small school of geos would well over stocked.

I would certainly go with a school of six geos, and if you could get them Geophagus argyrostictus would be my choice as they are smaller species and will allow you to add a few other cichlids. However they do need specific water conditions, PH of 6-7, hardness less than 12dGH and temperatures starting at 82F and up to 95F for short periods. The tank needs to be well oxygenated and have decent flow rate, imagine the verge of some rapids. Water also needs to kept clean, even tank bred G. argyrostictus can develop HITH if water conditions fall outside these parameters.

Cr. mamorata certainly looks nice. But pike cichlids have that natural born killer look to them, and at 14" I share dwarfpike's comment about ruling out smaller tank companions. And I agree about keeping G. altifrons, a larger and more hardy geo.

Another SA cichlid that I believe you should consider is Heros efasciatus, the common severum. There are two variants that appeal to me, Heros efasciatus (Turquoise) and Heros sp. 'red shoulders'.

Can't comment on the CA cichlids, other than I do know some one who has 6 Geophagus tapajos sp. 'orange head' and 6 Hypsophrys nicaraguensis in a 6x2x2 with no problems.
 

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Don't be surprised if the compressiceps narrow themselves down even in your tank size. Nasty little critters to themselves. I think Tommi have a few in his huge tank and they still went after each other. Might end up with a pair, but much better to let them pair naturally. They love small caves low against the gravel, so stuff the aquarium with those. I use river rock myself for that.

Just remember the altifrons will get 12" each or so, but are slow growers ... so I doubt any more fish will fit.
 

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wmayes keeping many species of CA & SA cichlids generally means small stocking levels due to size and agression levels of many of these fish. This is not a hard and fast rule, but a good starting point.

With your tank I would be looking at 6 G. altifrons as a starting group and possibly stocking 4 other cichlids, whether they be 4 individual species, or 2 pairs of different species.

As for G. altifrons sex ratios, there is much discussion as to whether they form pair bonds or whether a male defends a territory. The problem here is that altifrons are found over such a wide area and different location variants show slightly varied breeding behaviour. Also they are difficult to sex when genetailia are not in view, as females are only a little smaller than males.

Other things to consider, SA and CA cichlids often have varied water requirements for thier best colours to show. What this means is you can keep these fish together, but you are unlikely to get the best/true colours out some or all of the species.

How about you tell us what your must have species is and we'll try from there. I wish DBS would hurry up and contribute to this thread as he's much more experienced.
 

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The vieja regani and synspilus will take up a lot of room in that tank. Synpilus will grow huge but not be too aggressive. The regani on the other hand (if it's a male) will definately rule the tank with ease. Nics are easy and will be prolific...

The problem is (and it's been mentioned already) the foot print of the tank is not that big. Which of course will limit you on your stock list...

I love SA/CA communities, my 800 is full of them! BUT I've got 42 square feet of area to play with...

I would stock very lite if I were you. You will be happy in the end :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Okay. Let's start over and ditch all of the CA species with the exception of C. panamensis!

A group of Eartheater that reaches max of 8" and is easy to care for.
A single Cr. compressiceps.
A few C. panamensis.
A few A. tembe.

To match the hues of the room that the tank is in it will be heavily loaded with driftwood. I want to layer some of the pieces - will this (in the mind of the fishes in the tank) create more 'ground-space' or 'territory'?

BTW - G. argyrostictus: gorgeous species - can't believe I didn't notice it... I am fine at maintaining water parameters and am confident that I can provide for it.
 

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BTW - G. argyrostictus: gorgeous species - can't believe I didn't notice it
It's in your first post, so I think you did notice it.

Like I said earlier, a group of six geo's, say tapajos sp. 'orange head' and four A. tembe would be the most I would do.

As for the layering of the driftwood, you could try it, but that sounds more like a African cichlid or pleco setup, and SA/CA cichlids behave very differently. Generally driftwood in SA creek/rivers are, root tangles or overhanging branches, tree trunks during the wet season, and well driftwood in the main channels.

Driftwood in the main channels can form a large tangle or pile. But one pair of cichlids will claim and guard this as thier territory, chasing off all others.

My concern is one pair of SA/CA cichlids could easily claim one third of your tank as territory, forcing the rest to co-exist in a smaller area. If you get two pairs spawning at the same time, well...

Mate, honestly I'm trying to rain on your tank ideas, I'm just trying think what is best for the fish.

Like TheFishGuy said,
I would stock very lite if I were you. You will be happy in the end
I have a 150 gallon, 6'x18"x26" tank and my total cichlid list is 6 Geophagus araguaia sp. 'orange head' and 4 Laetacara curviceps (dwarf acaras). I do have lots of tetras and smaller catfish in there, but that's becuase my cichlids don't pose any threat to them. If I were to go larger cichlids the most I feel comfortable stocking would be 4 Geophagus proximus and 2 Severums rotkiel (Heros sp. 'red shoulders').
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Then I'll just go with A geo and some comps and when I meant driftwood I meant more of an S.A. look just lots and lots of it.
 
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