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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I inherited this tank and need to figure out what I have so I can add a few more. I think Squirt is a jewel but I'm not sure about the other two. The poor middle child is getting his butt kicked and he needs some company to absorb some of the aggressions Spike is directing toward him. And yes... I do name my fish. People name their dogs and cats don't they?

Anyway, hopefully someone here can help me out. Thanks!
Spike
Underwater Fin Arapaima Fish Marine biology

Middle child
Water Fin Underwater Fish Marine biology
Squirt
 

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Spike: Rocio octofasciata, Jack Dempsey (Male)
Middle Cichlid: Cryptoheros spilurum: Cutteri or Blue Eyed Cichlid (Beat up female?)
Squirt: Hemichromis sp. (possibly male)
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Nothing else should be placed in this tank, unless you want to see the Jack Dempsey kill it. That Cichlid has definitely attained his 'majority', and has now taken over the entire tank as his personal territory. Sometimes you get milder, more calm Jack Dempsey's.
Yours is not.
In the smaller size of your 55 gallon aquarium, that is pretty much all there is room for.
For now, it looks like the tough little African Jewel Cichlid is still holding his own in there (no surprise - they can be thugs too). That Cutteri however, is definitely getting the worst of it. And, unless you provide some smaller caves or other things just big enough for him to fit into that he can safely escape to in this tank - that Jack Dempsey is eventually gonna kill it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for letting me know what I have. Basically a mess of incompatibility. I do have some caves, rocks and plants ordered to provide cover. Hopefully I could provide a healthy environment for them and maybe find someone local to do some trading with.
 

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The second picture (middle cichlid) is a Firemouth cichlid (Thorichthys meeki). It's a little dark colored possibly because of the dark substrate, but it is most definitely a Firemouth cichlid. All the markings are visible, including the gill plate spot, as well as it's body shape and snout. Not a spilirum nor cutteri.
Picture # 3 (last picture) is what is known in the hobby as a Neon jewel or Turqoise jewel. Probably the most common Jewel cichlid in the trade today. It is not known exactly what and from where this jewel cichlid comes from. Could be a line bred strain or just have an unknown collection point, but it is virtually identical to the regular common jewel (Hemichromis guttatus) and differs in having much more bright blue spots.
 

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Yeah.... @BC in SK , you're absolutely right.
Got drawn in with those blue eyes. Plus, the really dark (fear?) coloration it's displaying now, subdued a lot of it's natural traits.
But, that gill plate spot and even the hint of orange underneath are total Firemouth. Looks a bit like a female, but in it's current condition it really is hard to say for sure.
(If it doesn't get any secure places to hide from Senor' Budfy in there soon, I suspect that Firemouth will just look dead).
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So, @MapDaddy , you may need to place a tank divider in there, or possibly even a fry basket or something to place the Firemouth in and protect him from further 'beat downs'.
Additionally, I would get a test kit and check the measured Nitrate level of the water in that aquarium. It's when a Cichlid gets a massive amount of stress put upon it, that we see opportunistic things like fungus or bacterial infections attack them. Stuff they can normally shrug off and not be bothered by.
Plus, water changes conducted with more frequency and in higher percentages, will provide for a more healthy environment and help to prevent that bad stuff from happening.
And lastly, check your food. Fresh purchased food is best, and keep it refrigerated to help ensure it stays that way. Doing those things, will definitely help to naturally boost up your fish's immune systems.
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Wow, and the mystery deepens 😱

while I was watching the tank last night Spike harass Middle child and MC came back at him and flashed bright red from below the gill plate.

I'm trying to get my hands on a 10 gallon tank for MC to rest in from the women I got the tank from. Definitely not a good permanent solution but it should help for the short term.

Thanks again for all the help! Everyone's been providing amazing information about these guys in helping me provide the proper environment.
 

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What is providing the filtration for the 55 gallon tank these fish are in now? Reason I'm asking - you may have to get some of the established filtration media from the one running now, to use with the 10 gallon, quarantine/hospital tank. This will prevent the new, little 10 gallon aquarium from 'cycling' with new filtration media, which could really be hard on the Firemouth placed in it (Ammonia spike = burned gills.... dead fish).
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The 55 is very much an old school configuration at the moment since I'm using what I had in storage. Whisper Power Filter with the bio-bag, Penguin Bio-Wheel 160, eheim canister filter with noodles and carbon, and an undergravel with reverse flow powerhead.

I'm going to move the Bio-Wheel to the 10 gallon along with some gravel and water to seed the tank.

Luckily I haven't forgotten everything from my old days 😉 I really hate killing such beautiful animals.
 

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That sounds right to me! I would get that little Penguin filter up and running now on the 55 gallon tank. Yeah, it may look a bit like a 'frankentank' with all of the stuff hanging off of it. But, it will get things started and established for that little power filter.
And yes, most times those 'old school' ways - work just fine. :cool:
 
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