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Hello,

After a 15 year hiatus, Im getting back in the hobby,I need help in what cichlids to get. Its a 50 gallon about 12 plants, 4 caves.

Its going to be a semi aggressive community tank. Between festivums (aka flag cichlid), Bolvian Rams, and Apistogramma Cacatuoides. Which species is the hardiest? Which is the aggressive. *** been told on other forums I can have only have 2 Appistos OR 2 Rams. Not both,and not more than 2.

Is this true, too small to keep 3 of the same species?

Since the festivums are top dwellers, and the other are bottom dwellers, can I still have 2 Flaviums as well or will there be agression issues?

Thanks!

PS *** kept many many cichlid tanks before, but never these species
 

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I think the Festivums (Mesonauta sp. would do fine with either of the other two, maybe better with the Bolivians than with the Cockatoos, but I don't think they would interact much with either species. As for only keeping two, I would actually recommend a trio for Cockatoos, as they do well in a harem situation IME. Bolivians can get a bit larger than most people realize, but they are not that aggressive in general, and seem to prefer groups to pairs. If it were M. ramirezi, I would only recommend a pair, but for Bolivians I think you could do four. Mixing Cockatoos and Bolivians is a definite no, as male Cockatoos can be quite aggressive.
 
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