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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all

New here. I've newly set up my 55g tank filled with cichlid sand for substrate and rock. I'm upgrading my internal filters which are fluval U4 and an ocean free hydra 20 to a canister soon.

I wanted Demasoni since I saw them at the LFS so currently I have 5 yellow labs and 9 Demasoni. All are maybe 1 inch to an inch and half. Demos are crazy!!!! I love them and no issues with my labs. I don't intend to add another species just add more demosonis when I have more money and the filtration allows as I know they are better in larger numbers due to their aggression. I've got loads of hiding places so hopefully things stay as they are. I'd love to see them have fry as I'd like to breed them (especially Demasoni). Any help or ideas would be great. Thanks.
 

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Pretty!

Get your numbers up over 12 so that when they mature you can remove extra males. You may be able to get 3 males to work in a 55G. If you want to raise fry you want a separate tank that is cycled with a filter and heater, just like the main tank.

Remove the female after she has been holding 7 to 18 days into the maternity tank, and when she spits the babies, remove her right away so she does not eat them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Agreed!! I will buy some more next week to give me at least 12. I've spent loads the last few weeks on the fish so need to watch the wallet. Plus I need to settle the filter down too. I've been told that as they are babies the first batch of fry are not worth keeping....is that true? I've bought a tank that sits in the main tank for now I case a fish does start to hold so at least she doesn't get harassed. I have a spare 20 gallon tank that I will start to cycle as soon as I have one holding so I can transfer her to it. Sound a plan?
 

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Nope!

The tank has to be cycled before she starts holding. The tanks that sit in the main tank (net boxes maybe?) but it's good for emergency 24 hour rescue but you would not want to keep a fish in there. Put the filter for the 20G on the main tank and just keep it there. You might have to move a holding female after 7 days which would not give you enough time to cycle it.

IDK why the first batch of fry would not be worth keeping? Not true IME.

However, the females will hold many times/year unless too many males harass them. So you don't have to and probably can't save every batch.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hello everyone

My new tank is all set up just waiting for my canister filter. I have a yellow lab and demosoni set up and want to breed. I currently have 5 yellow labs and 9 demosoni, all babies around an inch. How many more demos can I get? as I here they are better with more. Lots of rock and hiding places for everyone. My tank size is 40L x 16w x 22h.
Also when I do add more demos how can I make sure I don't have any aggression deaths with adding more as I have read the current 9 could kill the new ones as they will have already set their territories. The demos have been in for about 4/5 days and I can't afford to add more for maybe another two weeks or when the LFS have some.

Thanks
 

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Shoot to end up with 12 after removing extra males.

When adding fish add several at once and monitor for ammonia and nitrites to ensure your beneficial bacteria are able to grow to support the additional bioload.

If the existing fish are still under 2 inches and the new fish will also be under 2 inches, if you add say 5 then the aggression from the existing fish will be spread among the newcomers and each newcomer will be able to tolerate the abuse.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Ok great that sounds a good plan. So question. I added the 9 demosonis on the 13th and the 5 yellow labs a week prior to that. I've been testing the water and all is fine, nitrates are up a little bit then I'm due a water change in 2 days anyway. Are you suggesting adding 5 next week taking my demos to 14? Total fish in the tank will be 19, not forgetting it's a 55g. This be ok? Also 19 fish added in what three weeks be ok for the filters? I'm running two filters anyway so it's over filtered and all the fish are small. Sorry to keep asking but I want to do this right. I was planning on only adding 3 more demos next week and moving some rock around to help ease the aggression. They are expensive and I don't want to lose any! Thanks for your help
 

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Chrislisk said:
My tank size is 40L x 16w x 22h.
Thanks
Just reposting your tank dimensions as it was a bit hidden in your previous post. 55G tanks in the U.S. are usually 48" long so your tanks shorter length may make a difference.

What do you think DJ?
 

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With a tank that is 40" long you might be better off with a single species tank if you want Demasoni.

It may be unrealistic to expect never to lose a fish, but it is a worthy goal and one we should all aspire to. It can be done...experience helps.

Running two filters and concluding the tank is overfiltered could be true for removing debris but untrue for beneficial bacteria. No matter how many filters you have or how strong they are...the bacteria grow to support the number of fish in your tank. One filter will have most of the bacteria. Three filters will have 1/3 of the bacteria each (not counting bacteria growing on other surfaces). I would not remove any filters...even when you get your canisters...as long as you continue to add fish.

Rearranging aquascape could create aggression just as much as it could ease aggression. You want your rocks to be under the substrate so moving them may not be a good idea...at least not as a regular planned activity. Usually you put in rocks first...then substrate and don't disturb until something else (netting a sick fish) makes it unavoidable. For me that happens MAYBE once a year.

The problem with demasoni is you have to remove extra males and that could be almost half your fish. So you could add 3 but then have to remove one or two males and then have to do it again. Personally I would add 5. Your tank is cycled to support 14 fish so adding 5 should be OK with your existing amount of beneficial bacteria.

One way we frequently handle this is to stock unsexed juveniles 2X as many as you want females in the end. You would rehome a lot of extra males but hopefully not have to add females multiple times to keep the female count high.

Or you could try to see how it goes with 12 unsexed juveniles and get lucky with a batch of fry along the way...getting some more females that way. The problem with this is it will take six months or more to raise females to 2 inches and any aggression during that six months has no solution.

Demasoni are a difficult fish to keep and there is no one right way and no easy way at all IME. Definitely have a hospital tank to prevent bloat or cure it as you go along as they are more susceptible than other mbuna with their long gut.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hi. Thanks so much for the advice you have given me in the last post. I listened and went and got 5 more juvenile unsexed demasoni today taking my total to 14. Although there is one additional Male for sure! I also picked up two OB peacocks to finish off the stock. I'm now fully stocked and I will look to get any additional Male demos out and leave the females. I have one dominant Male which still seems the dominant Male bossing the new fish and around. 21 fish in total to grow out. I'll add a photo when everyone settles down in the next few days.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
You also said about removing the males. How long do I wait until I remove the males? I've already seen three, one that's the alpha but other two have one white spot on the anal fin and the alpha chases them off. Can't 100% say I have seen more than three but then they are young.
 

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With a 40" tank I'd say you are overstocked beyond good levels for managing aggression. I did not know you were planning to add 2 male peacocks. 7 individuals on a tank cycled for 14 could be pushing your biofilter. I would not save fry from this tank. 12 demasoni and a trio of yellow labs would about right for a 40" tank.

Chasing and a spot on the anal fin does not determine gender...both of those things can be and are true for females.

You remove extra males when the fish let you know by rejecting one. You will usually find the victim fish lurking under the surface (no fish chooses that position voluntarily). You can remove the victim (could be harassed female or sub-dominant male) or the aggressor. Repeat as necessary when the fish tell you to act until balance is achieved.

Be prepared to act quickly before the fish gets sick.

At every daily feeding, observe these 3 things:
1-anyone near the surface or behind a filter intake or heater
2-anyone who does not eat. Observe every fish.
3-feces are thick and food-colored

PS assume you did not quarantine the new fish for 3 weeks before adding them to the main tank? In the future that is a good practice to avoid introducing disease.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hi....I had not planned on adding two Male peacocks but wanted something extra other than demos and labs and if I'm honest I listened to the LFS which are good and a large outlet in the UK. They said the tank is currently overstocked but that it was ok and add the canister ASAP. They said the peacocks would be fine but I do need to take out the Male demos as I see them get rejected. I'm guessing it's the two peacocks that are the issue now as you said add 5 demos? Plan is to have 12 demos still. They are under inch and a half still. I do here what you say about now being overstocked for aggression....assume not when I get out the Male demos though? Can I ask your advice on water changes please. I currently do 40% once weekly......is this enough for this stock level? And lastly why would you not save fry from this tank? Because of the peacocks? Thank you
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Also not sure if it is worth mentioning but when I put my tank measurements into an aquarium water volume calculator it says I have a total water volume of 59 gallons. Not sure if this changes your view of my tank being overstocked for aggression.
 

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The length of the tank is the primary determining factor for stocking as the fish want to claim a territory on the substrate.

I would not do water changes less than 50% weekly and often do 75% weekly. If you need to do them more often, you will know if nitrates go above 20ppm.

Yes, you have peacock males in the tank which will want to spawn and may be successful in doing so with any female mouthbrooder in the tank. Did you know that OB peacocks are already half mbuna?

You are better off going 100% with advice from one source (maybe the good/large outlet in the UK) and not trying to get consensus from all sources. It will just frustrate you. :thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I understand what you mean by length is what is used to determine stock level....does width not count too? Wider better too surely to allow more space for territories to be taken.

I will up my water changes to 50% from now on as I've been doing about 75 litres out of 200, but then there are a lot of rocks so 50% of what water is actually in there could be 75 litres if that makes sense or maybe I am over thinking all this.

Yes I have learned OB peacocks are hydrid with Mbuna, loads of people saying that's why they mix better with them as they are more aggressive and can take the aggression but assuming the numbers of my demasoni they won't be paying much attention to the peacocks.

I've read Peacocks could but rarely only breed with Mbunas.
 

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The length is most important because chases may be abandoned after 36". So a 40" tank allows a few inches beyond the chase zone. The longer the tank, the more escape space.

Width is less important because it is usually less than 36" inches.

A long tank allows for fewer neighbors...end of the tank has 3 isolated sides and only a neighbor on one side.

Enjoy your tank!
 

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DJRansome said:
The length of the tank is the primary determining factor for stocking as the fish want to claim a territory on the substrate.

I would not do water changes less than 50% weekly and often do 75% weekly. If you need to do them more often, you will know if nitrates go above 20ppm.

Yes, you have peacock males in the tank which will want to spawn and may be successful in doing so with any female mouthbrooder in the tank. Did you know that OB peacocks are already half mbuna?

You are better off going 100% with advice from one source (maybe the good/large outlet in the UK) and not trying to get consensus from all sources. It will just frustrate you. :thumb:
Good information/advice!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thanks for all the advice. I stocked my demasoni on what you have said and I will get rid of the weaker fish as and when they get rejected. Thank you
 
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