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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I finally have my 55 gallon tank set up and have it cycling with some zebrafish right now. I am hoping to get a few mbuna in there this weekend, with the eventual goal of establishing 3 breeding groups of 5-6 fish of each species. I'm probably going to pick 3 of the species below:

Melanochromis cyaneorhabdos (mainganos)
Pseudotropheus Saulosi
Cynotilapia sp. white top hara (aka blue reef)
Labidochromis Caeruleus

My local fish store has some nice looking mainganos for sale at about 2.5". I am also considering ordering some fish online, which are quoted as 1+" young (the white top haras). Would it be ill advised to try and house these two different sized groups together? The 55 gallon tank is my only tank right now so there is no option to grow-out the smaller fish in another tank should any problems occur.

Thanks in advance!

P.S. If you have some smaller mainganos or larger white top haras available to ship or pickup near St. Louis MO, please PM me!
 

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They should be fine.

The fish don't look alike and one can't fit in the other's mouth.

Sounds very much like what I am planning for a second tank (Yellow Labs, Hara, and Mainganos) .

I am not sure how the barred Ps. Saulosi and Hara males will get along if you pick those two. Maybe someone can chime in who has tried them together.
 

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I would probably add the small Cynos first to let them find all the good hiding places. Then if ammonia and nitrite remain zero after a week, I'd add the labs. And after another week finish off with the Maingano as the most aggressive and largest fish. This will help with the size difference as well as aggression differences and minimize any mini-cycle as you increase fishload.

If you go with Saulosi instead of Labs the blue barred Saulosi (which look very much like Demasoni) will be fine with the Cynos. I have those Cynos with Demasoni...they are like positive-dark-Saulosi and negative-light-Cynotilipia.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Update:

I found a breeder in St. Louis who was selling yellow lab fry and Labeotropheus Fuelleborni (katale) juvies. I decided that I didn't want to jump in and online mail-order the white top haras as my first cichlids in the tank because I just set up the tank ~10 days ago and the water parameters aren't totally stable yet and the tank not fully cycled. Furthermore, if any of them died it would be tough to know if the cause was due to the stress of shipping or my water conditions.

Therefore this weekend I decided to get the Fuelleborni instead of the white top haras (maybe some day!) since they were local. Because he threw in a few for free, I ended up getting 8 yellow lab fry at 0.5 inches and 9 fuelleborni between 1" and 1.5". Thanks Mletap for the fish! All are doing well so far.

I'm a bit worried about the nitrogen cycling bacteria not being able to handle this increase in bioload, so I'll be testing ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate levels every day and probably doing a 25% water change every other day until things stabilize out. Maybe in about 2 weeks I'll add in the mainganos to finish out the tank. Pictures will inevitably be posted.
 

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This reply is a little late because the OP has already purchased other fish, but I thought I would chime in on this:

I am not sure how the barred Ps. Saulosi and Hara males will get along if you pick those two. Maybe someone can chime in who has tried them together.
I keep saulosi and white top hara together in a 55g. It works wonderfully!
 

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Probably better not to add any cichlids until your ammonia and nitrite are zero daily for a week. Being in a tank while cycling can cause permanent damage to your fish's gills, etc.
 
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