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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone, new to the Tropical fish world.

I recently cleaned out and resealed my 150 gallon old school solid glass oceanic tank, and got it set up and been cycling the water, and humored the wife and kids by putting 4 "standard" algae eaters in there with 2 clown loachs, I "justified" it by telling myself they can survive once i put the main fish in the tank.

Anyways I have done all types of fish in the tanks, but right now I am really trying to do a African cichlid tank. The only issues I have had is that my wife prefers the South American breeds for some reason(duno whyl

My current Filters (I am adding 2 powerheads in the next week or so), moves the water 4.0 an hour, and all of my levels are where I want them at. With that said here are my questions.

1. Can you mix African, and South American cichlids, if so, which breeds.

2. I am having a terrible time locating any good pairings of different breeds to properly mix together. Any advice would be appreciative. I'm particularly Fond of the Yellow Labs, and Electric Blue Johanni's. Been debating throwing in a FeatherFin sneaker or two, thought I would get inputs on that, and with that in mind what kinda mix I can figure I can get, I am trying to get a well stocked look, but not an overcrowded shouldering out of the way for room.

Btw the tank is 72X20X24
 

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Labidochromis caeruleus are good. I'd choose Melanochromis cyaneorhabdos (Maingano) for a similar look to johannii but less aggression. And I'd choose Synodontis multipunctatus or lucipinnis in a group of 5-6 over featherfins because you will see them more.

Regarding a mix of African and South American, they may have different water requirements. The Africans prefer a pH of 7.8 or over and at least some of the South Americans (Angels, for example) prefer a pH under 7.0. Not sure if requirements differ among South Americans, but the higher pH is a pretty consistent requirement among Africans like the mbuna you mention and any Africans from Lake Malawi, Lake Tanganyika and Lake Victoria.

When I had a tank that size stocked with mbuna, I had 5 species with 1m:4f of each. You might want 1m:7f for the Maingano. Plus I had the Synodontis, for a while I had groups of both multipunctatus and lucipinnis in the tank.
 

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this isn't really about aquarium decoration, so moving it to general where it fits better.

its a good sized tank, so theres plenty of stocking solutions, however don't mix South American with African.

theres issues with water parameters, diet (in many cases) temperament and behavior.

given the choice of clown loaches (note they are social, so prefer to be in groups of 3 or more (and show amazing behaviors when kept as large groups - go to the LFS when they've just stocked up the tank with 30+ clown loaches)) I would go down the South American route as they share the soft acidic water parameters, as well as the quite insectivorous diets

(please note I'm dealing in generalities here, there are extremes to either end in both African and South American cichlids)

I should just mention there are soft water Africans out there, generally west African sp. things like Pelvicachromis, Tilipieas etc (thier in the profiles section under "miscellaneous African cichlids"

whats your tap water like, if its soft then you'll have to choose, however if it comes out hard then you might want to look at the Rift Africans of Central American cichlids.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you for the replies!

I'll look into all of that, Either way I will let you guys know what gets decided, my tap water comes out at 7.2.

Also, anyone know anything about Blueberry cichlids, are they a hybrid, there is limited to no info out there on them...

Thanks again guys!
 

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Blueberry is a trade name for a Metriaclima, often sp. zebra, with a blue blotched pattern.

You could try looking for Metriaclima sp. zebra OB. The OB indicates the blotches.
 

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Yellow labs (L. caeruleus) Red or OB zebras (M. estherae) and Yellow tale Acei (Pseudotropheus sp. "Acei" (Msuli) work quite well together. I have had the Zebras and Labs together for many years and just recently added Aceis to the mix. The Zebras can be aggresive amongst themselvs but usually leave the other species alone. :fish:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
It looks like the tank is going to have.

Pseudotropheus demasoni (12-15)
Labidochromis caeruleus (not sure on the final # on these guys, any advice? may opt out for perlmutts if possible to find them)
Cynotilapia Afra(shooting for 1m4/5f, but not positive on the #'s (If I can ever find any))
Pseudotropheus sp(Also not sure of #'s here.)
Metriaclima zebra (OB) (I wish to keep this group as small as possible...)

Then of course I will prolly have a few catfish, or whatnot, and a algae eater or two.

Thoughts? questions? concerns?

Once again this is for a 150gal tank. Thanks for your thoughts in advance.
 

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I'd up the Demasoni to 20 in a 72" tank. They need to fill the tank to manage aggression.

The afra and the demasoni may not be a good mix since they are both blue barred cichlids. Or maybe you were planning on a yellow barred species?

What is Pseudotropheus sp?

Metriaclima is pretty aggressive so I would stock 1m:4f unless you go all females.

Catfish I recommend Synodontis multipunctatus or lucipinnis, a group of 5-6. Algae eater I recommend 2 bristlenose plecos.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
20 Demasoni's Def works for me, I was almost too worried that 12-15 was too few. So thats definitly some weight off of the shoulders.

If I have to pick between the afra and demosoni, I am def going with the Demasoni.

Pseudotropheus sp. is the Acei. like I said not sure on the numbers with that either.

In regards to the Metriaclima I know the breeder, and already have 3m/2f, as they get older I can probably trade out as needed.

In regards to the Labidochromis caeruleus how many for a tank this big roughly?
 

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20 demasoni
1m:4f yellow labs
1m:4f acei
1m:4f metriaclima

You still have room for another species, or kick the females up one-two on the labs, acei and metriaclima.
 
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