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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After researching and reading the forums for a while I have seen that new tank journals have become quite popular, and the other members of this forum have imo provided new tank owners with great advice. Today I just washed my rocks and set them in the tank, and so far I likin' it. I am waiting for a few supplies to arrive and I will fill the tank with sand, water, filters, the whole shabang and get it cycling.

Stats:
tank: 60 gal. 48/15/17
filters/pumps: fluval 404 and koralia 750
rock: (almost too much) granite
substrate: washed play sand

Fish (hopefully):
Metriaclima sp. "Zebra Long Pelvic"- 8
Cynotilapia sp. "Hara"- 8

Here are some pictures of the rock setup. Any comments/suggestions (equipment, fish, rocks, etc...) are much appreciated and hoped for. I will continue post pictures until fish are well established in the tank.

The rocks (i apologize for the poor quality/glare:

Before placement in tank


Front


Top Right (blurry)


View from left side. Rocks go all the way to the front!


Right side


Thanks for viewing everybody! Let me know what you think![/img]
 

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Too big & too much relative to the size of the tank...
 

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Take out half the rocks. Arrange it into two clumps of piles on either side. The alpha should claim one pile and the rest will share the other. Keeps aggression down. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
alright I'll give that a try and see how it looks. I'm going for a look somewhat like this:

I'll mess around with it a bit...
 

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Look at 1:19. Notice the sandy patch surrounded by rock. *That* would be a perfect aquarium layout. Cichlids like to dig and you should give them areas to do that. If they can't dig you miss out observing one of the best behaviors mbunas possess.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Alright I cleared out some of the rocks from the middle to give it a little more space, let me know what you think.

 

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I like it much more, I still think it needs more open sand space in the middle. But now we're branching into personal preference and I don't want to force my taste on you. I would take out two of the larger rocks in the middle and all the small rocks out.

I love the color of your rocks and the source of your inspiration.
 

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Looks better.... I would remove the two largest ones on the right & split the rest into two piles...

The Mdoka's will get pretty big & will need some space.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hey guys thanks for the speedy advice! I'll definitely see what I can do about making some more space in the middle, but I cant imagine moving those two big ones on the right, they'r sooo heavy (plus i love big rocks hehe). I'll keep you all posted. Oh, one more thing, does my fish list seem okay? I think the two species will contrast well.

Thanks!
 

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Oh, one more thing, does my fish list seem okay? I think the two species will contrast well
Looks fine but they are both fairly aggressive... I would do 2M, 4-5F for both groups.

I have multiple Hara males color in my 180 with Demasoni FWIW. Demasoni & Mdoka seem like a good comparison in temperament. The Mdoka will get significantly larger than the Demasoni though...
 

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cantrell00 said:
The Mdoka will get significantly larger than the Demasoni though...
He isn't doing Demasoni. Cyno sp. hara was with the Mdoka.

I think your setup looks good. I would leave your rock alone, get the tank cycled, see how the fish start to respond. You'll know if the territories are too "mixed" or close and if you need to remove some pieces. Fish are for your enjoyment too, so do what will make you happy as much as you can while accommodating their needs. My $0.02.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Well we'll see how it goes one of the sites sponsers whom i will propbly be buying the fish from said the haras should be okay with the mdokas.

I took another stab at the rocks too, I like this even better
 

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Cantrell, you don't have any issues with the similarity of the colors and stripping with the Dems and the Hara males? I know the Hara are a bit lighter, but I figured that could go badly. I wanted Dems, but liked the Hara better.
 

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I liked the way you first had the rocks, but the change looks good too.

killakam said:
use egg crate!!!
And please don't bother with eggcrate. Tempered glass is made to handle this. Brittle plastic is not.
 

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+1 If you got the rock in there without breaking the tank, you don't need to worry about it. I have a rock in a 40g breeder that weighs around 140 lbs. just be careful moving them around.
 

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He isn't doing Demasoni. Cyno sp. hara was with the Mdoka.
I know. I was saying that the demasoni is a close color & temperment comparison to the Mdoka. Both are blue/black bar fish.

Cantrell, you don't have any issues with the similarity of the colors and stripping with the Dems and the Hara males? I know the Hara are a bit lighter, but I figured that could go badly.
No.. The Hara are at the top on a dominance scale.. They really don't pay each other any attention. I could make the argument that demasoni & hara really don't look much like one another at all. The females are deep blue to purple & the males can be nearly white, light grey when colored. It should be noted that this is in a 180 with 25-30 juvenile dems @ approx 15 juvenile hara. The largest of both are around 2". In a smaller tank with lesser fish it could be a completely different dynamic in how the fish 'deal' with one another.
 

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I enjoy it when someone is excited about the hobby. I feel the same thing setting up new tanks. I will give you my personal 2 cents worth and ultimately you have to make the final decision. I would remove the huge rock, 2nd one from the right. Also i would remove the 2 or 3 smaller rocks to the right of the 2 big ones on the left.. Then you should have some good central space for sand sifting and actual swimming.

Also don't forget your tank is a 60 gallon tank,, with that much rock in there and with that size, you don't have a 60 gallon tank of water any longer. That will affect the amount of fish you can have in there as well as how often you have to do water changes and so forth....

All in all though,, I like how it looks but i think a bit more open space would do wonders and more beneficial......

Looking forward to see how this ends up....
cheers!!!
Sheldon
 
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