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Ill-Advised Community - Unusual that they all get on?

778 Views 6 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  ~Firefly~
I have a set-up that's been going for a good 18 months now with the following:

Tank dimensions: W80cm x D43cm x H55cm (120 litres volume)

Decor: a lot of rock work built up at the back from floor to water level - lots of very deep caves, but this leaves a fairly reduced footprint for the shellies who have around 10 shells along the front and side.

3 x N. Pulcher "Daffodil"
5 x Julies (probably hybrids as one looks like a Dickfeldi and the others look like Ornatus)
2 x L. Ocellatus Gold
4 x Melanotaenia Praecox (I know these aren't Tangs but I wanted something to swim at the top)

There are also 4 x Threadfin Rainbowfish which were bought in error (I sent someone to collect some Dwarf Neon Rainbowfish and the shop must have got the common names mixed up as they came back with these tiny things...due to be rehomed but again, I'm stunned they have survived as I thought they would be fish food when I put them in!)

The Ocellatus are almost certainly the characters of the tank and will attack me readily when I put my hand in to clean anything or move anything. I started off with 5 juveniles (with a larger footprint than I have now) but they dropped off to two and I think they are both male as they are fairly large and bright now. I did try introducing three females about 9 months ago but they all disappeared within 2 days and I didn't see them again (no bodies ever showed up) but then out of the blue one showed up for a day a few months ago and then disappeared again. For all I know it may still be alive in there.

That aside, there has never been any interspecies aggression in the tank. The Daffodils seem to display to each other occasionally but never fight (and I think these are 2 males and 1 female). The julies have always been active but very placid.

Is this unusual? I'd say they were all adults by now and to be honest, with that mix, I had expected a few casualties. The Daffodils dig under the rockwork a fair bit and do stick to their own established caves but I don't think they are breeding. The Ocellatus have certainly bred at some point when there was a female as there was a long period of shell raiding by the julies and Daffodils where they must have been eating everything.

:oops: Am I asking for trouble with this set-up or just lucky? :fish:
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:-? Anyone?

Perhaps this is normal if no one thinks it's unusual :)
I think the key is that there hasn't been any breeding. Daffs are hard to sex, but my guess is that you have three of the same sex. You'll find out in a hurry if I'm wrong. :lol:
Otherwise, julies and daffs can coexist in some cases, although I expect that.your female shellies may have fallen victim to them.
Ah ok. I've never seen any aggression from the Julies at all...they're really wimpy. I had assumed that the females had been killed by the Ocies themselves as they are the most aggressive in the tank. Perhaps it's an all male tank now. Suits me as they are wonderful to watch. :D
Indeed the only reason it is working, is because the daffodils haven't bred. If they do, the story will be completely different.
The occie behavior is not unusual at all. I had a hard time getting males to accept females too, and saw the same thing. The females would hide in the rocks for a while, suddenly reappear one day, then disappear forever. If you've just got the two males now, then they should do fine if each feels he has his space. Apparently they do. Even after spawning, the males would suddenly reject females. I think quarters are too close in a typical aquarium to mimic what they'd do in the wild. I read that a typical occie male in the lake can claim an area up to two meters and have many females.

Seems you've got the right mix at the moment. The only thing to watch for now is breeding from the brichardi. That could shake things up, but I'd wait and see. I'm wondering if you really don't have 3 males. My pulcher's didn't turn out to be as ruthless about allowing tankmates as I'd feared. They allow a t. temporalis shell to live under one of their rocks and even come out a bit with only mild aggression towards him. They've sort of accepted him. Maybe he's considered a pet? :)

Sounds like a nice tank with interaction and interest. I'd not change anything until they show you that you need to. Of course, if you get juli fry, let them become snacks for the birichardi.
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Cool, I feel less of a maverick now. Thanks for your advice. 8)
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