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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking for some help if anyone here is familiar with pseudotropheus damasoni. I have two of them in my 60 gallon tank. Came from the same LFS, but not sure what sex they are. When I introduced them into the tank one was pretty aggressive toward the other which I've learned is normal for these fish, especially toward each other. However over the last week or so they've both taken up small areas in the tank under rock ledges that I constructed and they never come out to eat. In fact I haven't seen them actually eat in over a week. I know they're mouth brooders, but while I have no proof I kind of thought they might both be males because they're both pretty amazing looking fish. Either way, they're both hiding and rarely come out. Anybody experience this and at what point do I start to get concerned that they're not eating?

Other fish in the tank are
One OB peacock
two red fin Borleyi
two german red peacocks
one taiwan reef
two synodointis cats
few small labs and socolofi (< 1 inch in length)

60 gallons
pH is 8.2
temp is 82 degrees Fahrenheit.
No ammonia,
.5 ppm nitrite (working on this)
0 ppm nitrate
 

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The nitrite is your #1 problem...how are you addressing it?

Malawi do not pair, whether they are m:f or m:m or f:f. I think you need to change stock in your tank. In pairs they are likely to kill each other.

What are the dimensions of the 60G?

Do you want to keep mbuna like demasoni, labs and socolofi? Or haps and peacocks?

Last do you want a mixed gender tank or an all-male tank?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for replying. I just did a 50% water change and nitrite level only dropped a little. I'm using Prime conditioner. I also use "Stability" after a water change.

As an update, one of the damasoni came out of hiding and looked like he's giving up so I moved him to a 10 gallon. It's unlikely he'll make it, but hopefully I'm wrong.

The store sold me these and suggested I wouldn't have a problem mixing them. I have seen some things on YouTube where people are mixing haps, peacocks and mbuna, but sounds like it's not a good idea?

While I imagine it's possible the two damasoni I got were sick when I got them, they did thrive for a few weeks. I'd be really upset if it's something I could have avoided.

Other than water change, what can I do to kill the nitrite level quickly? The Prime I have suggests doubling the dose to get rid of Nitrite so I can try that next since the last water change didn't eliminate all of it.

The tank is a MarineLand 60 gallon. 48.5" Wide x 25" High x 12.75" Long

I'd prefer a mixed gender tank in hopes of getting something to spawn eventually.

Thanks for your help!
 

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RE: doubling Prime: IME this won't hurt. I've tripled the recommended dosage several times in the past and it had no ill effect. According to Seachem's literature, Prime will detoxify nitrite and ammonia. But my understanding of this is that it does so by 'binding' to those molecules and that this binding effect only lasts around 24hrs. In addition, I read somewhere else that after Prime binds your tests may still show positive readings for those things. Note that the Seachem recommended dosage should cover the entire tank volume and not just for the water you are replacing.

RE: water changes: more water changes will help. If you were doing weekly water changes before then I would increase the frequency; I would do a wc once or twice a day until the nitrite was under control. If you weren't doing weekly water changes before then be careful not to make too big of a change in your water; I would do much smaller frequent water changes.

RE: mixing Mbunas with Peacocks/Haps: I can give you my experience; I've mixed Johannii's, Yellow Labs, and Demasoni in my all male Peacocks/Haps tanks.
In my 450gal: the two Yellow Labs have grown to adult size and do well, no aggression.
In my 180gal: my two Demasoni died after two months for no outward physical reason I could see. The one Johannii lived for about seven months, was the clear but gentle king of the tank, but eventually died of bloat due to that I've always fed the tank on a Peacocks/Haps diet, I think.

I've heard that Demasoni require more care than most other Mbuna.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks ken31cay, I will do 25% water changes for the next few days and see if that cleans up the remaining Nitrite. I add Prime with every wc anyway, so I'll double up on it over the next few days.

Related question though. Is ANY Nitrite ever considered "ok"? I know you want 0 ppm, but can even a small amount start to impact the fish enough to potentially cause what I'm going through with the Damasoni?

Wow! 450gallons!??? That's a lot of tank! Other than these two damosoni, every fish is thriving and there is little aggression in the tank. One male Borleyi is clearly the king of the tank (by far my best looking fish as well) and he's pretty cool. Just likes his corner of the tank and keeps others out of it.

Thanks for the info!
 

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timmcg1011 said:
Thanks ken31cay, I will do 25% water changes for the next few days and see if that cleans up the remaining Nitrite. I add Prime with every wc anyway, so I'll double up on it over the next few days.

Related question though. Is ANY Nitrite ever considered "ok"? I know you want 0 ppm, but can even a small amount start to impact the fish enough to potentially cause what I'm going through with the Damasoni?

Wow! 450gallons!??? That's a lot of tank! Other than these two damosoni, every fish is thriving and there is little aggression in the tank. One male Borleyi is clearly the king of the tank (by far my best looking fish as well) and he's pretty cool. Just likes his corner of the tank and keeps others out of it.

Thanks for the info!
You're welcome. I think anything above 0.5ppm Nitrite can be dangerous. Once I get my tank cycled and am comfortable the water parameters are set then I don't regularly test the water since I would say I go overboard with tank maintenance, and water changes 70% every 5-6 days. For new tank cycling I've always started by doing 50% daily water changes for 5-6 weeks then testing my water over a few days before scaling down to ~weekly water changes. My water change setup is relatively easy, which makes it possible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
ken31cay said:
timmcg1011 said:
Thanks ken31cay, I will do 25% water changes for the next few days and see if that cleans up the remaining Nitrite. I add Prime with every wc anyway, so I'll double up on it over the next few days.

Related question though. Is ANY Nitrite ever considered "ok"? I know you want 0 ppm, but can even a small amount start to impact the fish enough to potentially cause what I'm going through with the Damasoni?

Wow! 450gallons!??? That's a lot of tank! Other than these two damosoni, every fish is thriving and there is little aggression in the tank. One male Borleyi is clearly the king of the tank (by far my best looking fish as well) and he's pretty cool. Just likes his corner of the tank and keeps others out of it.

Thanks for the info!
You're welcome. I think anything above 0.5ppm Nitrite can be dangerous. Once I get my tank cycled and am comfortable the water parameters are set then I don't regularly test the water since I would say I go overboard with tank maintenance, and water changes 70% every 5-6 days. For new tank cycling I've always started by doing 50% daily water changes for 5-6 weeks then testing my water over a few days before scaling down to ~weekly water changes. My water change setup is relatively easy, which makes it possible.
Great, thanks. I will do just that. With any luck the remaining damesoni will do better now that I've removed one. And if the Nitrite is a factor he may start eating again once it's controlled. Thanks again.
 

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In a 48" tank, these fish are too big, I would rehome them. Also they do not pair, so they are likely to kill each other.
two red fin Borleyi
one taiwan reef

If want to keep mbuna, I would do the OB peacock, the socolofi and the labs with 1m:4f of each. That is the proper level of overcrowding for a 48x12. You should get spawning and aggression should be managed with that stocking.

The two german red peacocks are not a fit with mbuna, so I would rehome them.

Although my fish start gasping when nitrite hits 0.05 ppm, I do not think it killed your demasoni. I think aggression killed it...even if you did not witness the aggression. Demasoni are both aggressive and delicate healthwise.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
DJRansome said:
In a 48" tank, these fish are too big, I would rehome them. Also they do not pair, so they are likely to kill each other.
two red fin Borleyi
one taiwan reef

If want to keep mbuna, I would do the OB peacock, the socolofi and the labs with 1m:4f of each. That is the proper level of overcrowding for a 48x12. You should get spawning and aggression should be managed with that stocking.

The two german red peacocks are not a fit with mbuna, so I would rehome them.

Although my fish start gasping when nitrite hits 0.05 ppm, I do not think it killed your demasoni. I think aggression killed it...even if you did not witness the aggression. Demasoni are both aggressive and delicate healthwise.
Thanks for your feedback. I guess I've been getting quite a bit of misinformation. I get that the pet store wants to make money, but wish they had given me more direction. There is a lot of information on YouTube as well that would suggest my current set up is appropriate, but in watching a lot of those videos I don't get a sense that they're more than just other hobbyists.

I'm partial to the peacocks and so I may keep them and re-home the mbuna.

Thanks for the information.
 

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If you keep peacocks and want spawning...one species of peacock per tank. They crossbreed and once mixed you can't ID the separate species of females and thus can't sell or rehome them any time in the future.

Peacocks are 1m:4f. You could probably do the OB peacocks, the yellow labs (they are more peaceful for mbuna) and a hap like Placidochromis electra 1m:4f in a 48x12 tank.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
DJRansome said:
If you keep peacocks and want spawning...one species of peacock per tank. They crossbreed and once mixed you can't ID the separate species of females and thus can't sell or rehome them any time in the future.

Peacocks are 1m:4f. You could probably do the OB peacocks, the yellow labs (they are more peaceful for mbuna) and a hap like Placidochromis electra 1m:4f in a 48x12 tank.
That makes sense. I guess this is how the obsession starts, huh? Time for the next tank already! LOL
 
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