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Hi,

I have a 55 gallon tank. I am planning on stocking it with 12 paracyps. I will also put in a few rock piles and have some juli transcriptus and maybe one other rock dweller. My question is about the sand bed.

Right now I have 4 brevis in the tank. I was thinking of adding something else to share the bottom and am trying to figure out if this is terrible idea.

Plan A: split the tank in half, one half with a low density of shells, one half with no shells. For this tank I would add some E. Decampsi (maybe 4).

Plan B: leave the bottom full of tanks and add 4 occelatus gold. Put small rocks in the middle of the sand bed to break up line of sight. Rocks with say java fern or java moss attached.

Plan C: Add 4 occelatus gold and 4 E. Decampsi and hope of the best. Again, a few small rocks in the sandbed to break up line of sight.

What do you think?

Thanks,

Nate Terry
 

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Nate, I think you will have some issues building the type of territories you want. If you put in a substrate spawning rock dweller such as a Julidochromis, their territory will stretch beyond the rockwork. Typically a territory will be 12-18 square inches. If you get real lucky, and that territory is butting right to the end of your tank, it eliminates the front part of the tank as "open" space.

L. brevis are a great community fish, in that they typically don't take huge territories, so you should be fine there. In order to have the ocellatus work with brevis, you will need to hope that by putting the Julidochromis in the middle with all the rock work, and splitting one shellie on either side, they might coexist. That is, if they listen to your territory building and go where they are supposed to.

The problem now is, there is one rockpile, and the Paracyp's (rock dwellers) will be pushed out by the Julies, and will feel uncomfortable in the open where they will be chased by the shellies.... forget about the Ectodus too.

The question becomes, do you prefer the ocellatus, or keeping the Paracyp's and Ectodus?
 
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