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Setting up tank specifically for FH (need answers)
first off I'm new to this forum but I'm really getting into it. I'l be sure to keeping checking out...

In the near future I plan on starting up a new tank for a flower horn... Here is what I plan on doing and I'm looking for feedback.

Hardware

75 gallon AGA Tank (back and bottom painted black)
Fluval 405 canister filter rated for 75gallons
Eheim Submersible Heater
Coralife 50/50 fixture

questions

1. I've read that FH's prefer a colorful background. I'm very fond of black background and plan on going with a bare bottom with either terra cotta pots or drift wood. So would it be recommended to go with a solid color background?

2. Since flower horns are so aggressive would algae be an issue since I cannot put a pleco in the tank?

3. Would a 130w coralife fixture with 50/50 bulbs be too much for a FH configuration?

4. Any suggestions of other forums out there that specialize in FH and their care?
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As with normal cichlids you can't asume anything. Every FH will have it's own personality. It may not be aggressive, you just never really know. Also I've never heard of a fish liking a colorful background. Backgrounds and lighting are for us to look at, not the fish. I would suggest more filtration. To generalize, cichlids need a lot of filtration simply becauase they're pigs. Rule of thumb should be twice the reccomendation. If your filter is rated for 75 gallons and you've got a 75. Then get two filters....
 

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FHs like to dig so by not having any gravel in the tank you have taken a lot of their fun away. Some people don't like the digging and don't have gravel for this purpose. I feel they need a little digging to be truly happy. That's just my opinion. They definitely like to have a cave to hide in and "fix" up. By fix I mean move the gravel around. TFG is right you will need more filtration.
 

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I would run two Aqua clear 110's on the tank for filtration. Also put a larger sized Power head toward the bottom to bring the poop up to the intakes of the Filters. They get very messy. Not oscar messy but messy. The bare bottom is nice but I think you should scatter some large size gravel for the psycilogical aspect of the fish. Their still Large cichlids and Large Cichlids dig and move it all over. This has also helped in KOK Developement of my Males. As far as the back ground go with black if that's what you want. They really don't care. Some people got it in their heads that it helps in KOK developement. I've seen No evedence Of this in several tries. light wose I say try it bue I would go for a little less light myself. So the FH feels like it's in a darker, safer, Enviroment. Once it hits 6" - 8" It will not matter too much. Hope this helps. :thumb:
 

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What is 'KOK'?

Also, about the Fluval 405 - The only ones I could find were rated for 340 GPH/100 Gallons. Still not enough for Cichlids from what I've read, but a bit better.
 

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KOK is the flowerhorn term for the nuchal hump, the hump on there for head, kok means horn, but i dont remember which language it is, its Vietnamese or something on that lines.

the flowerhorn will show much nicer color and appear happier on a color background, that is 100% true, irregardless of what you hear on this forum, of course, the color background helps certain strains more then others, Kamfa is the strain it seems to help most, though it will work fine with the others as well, a lot of times black back grounds tend to make the flowerhorn skittish (personal experience and others experience), therefore they wont display as nicely.

as for filtration, just ignore the amount of gallons the filter is rated for, it is useless. look at the GPH. the filter should filter your entire tank out AT LEAST 5 times an hour (on a 50 you would want 250 GPH) so on a 75 you should be looking at bare minimum 375GPH, minimum.
 

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To me, having that much lighting (130watts) over a 75g would be a waste unless you plan on having live plants in there with the fish. Strictly fish only I would only go with a single normal fluorescent tube....one meant to bring out the colors of the fish. Too much lighting will bring about unwanted algae too.

I have a female FH and right now she is in with a larger-than-she is rhino pleco. This may or may not work out in the future but I am hopeful that since she has been with the pleco as a young fish she will continue to live together peacefully with it as she ages. You could certainly try a pleco and see how it goes.

I'm using a blue background as that is what I already had laying around! :wink: I also use gravel in this tank and she has a nice cave set up. Definitely have hiding spots for the fish when young. As they age they won't need this as much but when young it definitely helps the fish feel secure!

You're gonna love having a flowerhorn!! :D
 

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as for filtration, i would add an AC100 to the 405. the lights are a bit too much IMO. i would just do a regular fluorescence light. on the background i would go black but thats just me. as for extra care information, check out monsterfishkeepers.com/forums they have an entire section dedicated to hybrid fish with lots of FH information.
 

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also about the pleco, usually they arent picked on because they arent looked at like a threat like another cichlid would be, so generally, unless your flowerhorn enjoys to "play" with any other fish in the tank, the pleco will be fine.
 

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I think the color of the background and the gravel will definitely influence your flowerhorn's color as gage said. If you want to do a black background I would recommend using a natural colored gravel to bring out the best colors in your fish.
 
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