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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all! After much debate, I've decided to put a group of 4 or 5 sardine cichlids (1 male, all others female) in my 30 gallon, along with a pair of calvus, and maybe a small goby. I have a golden wonder killifish I'd like to add to the tank as well, but I'd rather not he become lunch. Would he work out there? Thanks! :)
 

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The sardine cichlids are better in a 48" tank in a group of 12 individuals if you are talking about cyprochromis. If you have paracyps it might work. Not sure about the killi's.
 

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I second DJRansome's advice against putting Cyprichromis in anything shorter than a 4' tank. Paracyprichromis will be fine in a 3' tank.

The calvus would be nice, as would be the goby - provided you can find a way to cater for their different dietary requirements. Calvus prefer a protein rich diet that can give vegie eaters like Gobies bloat.

I would not worry about the killifish becoming lunch. They grow to 3" to 4" as adults, and are actually quite aggressive fish that shouldn't be housed with anything that become lunch. They are also fairly territorial, and that could become a problem in your setup. Usually people have lots of bottom dwellers, and it's hard to find fish that prefer the upper region of the tank. In your case, the killifish, the paracyps, and the goby all prefer areas higher up. In my experience once established, gobies will hold their own, but I would be worried about the killifish harassing the sensitive paracyps.

What you suggest might work, but a more harmonious stocking list would be:

Golden Wonder Killifish - top of tank
Calvus - rocks, middle of tank
Shelldweller (such as occelatus, multies or brevis) - shells, bottom of tank.

As a side note, did you know that there is a Tanganyikan killifish (Lamprichthys tanganicanus)?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hmmm... Is there another type of tanganyikan cichlid with a strong blue/purple coloration that could replace the cyprichromis, and that isn't a shell dweller? Or even a cichlid from another lake that would work out with the current stocking list? I'm not the biggest fan of shell dwellers, since I've yet to see one matching the particular coloration I'm looking for. Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. :)
Also, I didn't know there was a Tanganyikan killifish. Very interesting!
 

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Shelldwellers are kept for their fascinating behavior. With a lot of aquarists the fascination with colors fades over time. A casual observer will walk past a tank and say: "wow, what a striking blue". But if you sit in front of the tank every day, you quickly get used to it if that fish doesn't do anything interesting. Shellies are always digging and re-arranging their shell beds, getting into little squabbles without hurting each other, and occasionally produce some fry without swamping you with hundreds of them. Most people find that a shellie tank can entertain you for years, but by now you probably noticed that I am not unbiased - I love shellies


There are plenty of blue cichlids - more probably than of any other color - but right now I have a hard time thinking of any that fit a 30G tank! 30G is a good sized thank for community fish, but for cichlids it really limits your stocking choices. That's why you hear the general recommendations for cichlids fitting smaller tanks:

- Shellies from Lake Tanganyika (http://www.cichlid-forum.com/profiles/c ... php?cat=14)
- Dwarf Cichlids from South America (http://www.cichlid-forum.com/profiles/c ... php?cat=30)
- Dwarf Cichlids from West Africa (http://www.cichlid-forum.com/profiles/c ... php?cat=17)

In our profiles the West African Dwarves are lumped in under 'Miscellaneous Africans Cichlids', which also contains some huge fish. You have to go through them and find the small ones!

Those are your standard options for a 30G. Most other cichlids you can grow out in a tank that size, but eventually you will need a larger setup. That is even true for the slow growing calvus!

One other option - and I am mentioning this particularly because you asked for color - would be to go with a single species of smaller staying and more peaceful mbuna from Lake Malawi. A great species would be Pseudotropheus saulosi. They are active and fun to watch, and have bright blue males and yellow females. They are one of very few mbuna species that can work in a 3' tank, and certainly the most colorful of those. They'd need the tank for themselves, however.


Pseudotropheus saulosi

If you want the stocking list you have in mind, something like a 75G tank would make it possible, and those tanks are not expensive second hand eg via Craigslist :thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I think I'll stick to the paracyps, though if I ever end up owning another 20 or 30 gallon, I'll definitely consider a full shell dweller community. I was originally going to get the cyprichromis, but you guys have convinced me not to. :) If my beloved Killer (my killifish) becomes mean with the paracyps, I'll move him to another tank. As it is, I'm planning on introducing all the fish at the same time, so no one gets to establish a territory first.
I did consider getting a larger tank, but fish are a bit of a drain on my wallet atm, seeing as I also have 5, 10, 55, and 75 aquariums. The 75 is just now being prepared for fish, but I'm reserving it as a SA tank because I'm of the mindset that no home is complete without an Oscar.
Thanks so much for the advice! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
One more question: I've read that Aceis are fairly non-aggressive for malawis, and that they could work in a 30. Would it be possible to replace the paracyps with a small group of Aceis, or will there be too much aggression? Also, a friend suggested I should go with a small group of multis and nix the goby, what are some thoughts on that?
 

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Acei get rather big and would outgrow a 30g pretty quickly. They would do better in a 48" or longer tank. Multis are a type of shell dweller, and would probably work great.
 
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