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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I would like to ask you for confirmation or advice regarding stocking of my 140 gal 70" long tank.
I plan to have breeding pair/groups of following species:
N.buescheri
N.leleupi
N.tretocephalus
A.calvus or compressiceps - what are pros & cons?
N.multifasciatus or simillis - what are pros & cons?
Julidochromis transcriptus or others?
Telmatochromis - maybe?
Paracyprichromis or other "free water swimmers"

Any ideas are welcome, many thx in advance.
 

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Maybe a little over-ambitious for a 70" tank, but here are some comments.

Trets have a rep that they will kill all in the tank, including each other, when they spawn. For this reason, I went with a single tret in my tank and he still caused trouble. He is gone.

Leleupi will bother/kill the shellies during their attempts to get the fry...even the adults. Mine even killed my caudopunctatus. They are gone.

Once you get rid of those two you have a more workable plan. Not sure about the buescheri or telmatochromis.
 

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Which Telmatochromis are we talking about here?

I don't know what fish you have kept before, but substrate spawners typically need space for their territories, and will take as much territory as they can, so you'll need to "manage" their territory by having distinct rock piles.

In a tank that is just slightly less than 6', you should be able to manage four territories, if you include one shell dweller species.

With your list

N.buescheri
A.calvus or compressiceps - what are pros & cons?
N.multifasciatus or simillis - what are pros & cons?
Julidochromis transcriptus or others?

I can see this working out. In a community tank, you are better off with multifasciatus than similis. The multi's colonize better, and protect their fry as a group. The similis tend to get theirs picked off.

No issues with either calvus or compressiceps, though they may attempt to eat fry... they'll get some, but a good colony of multifasciatus should grow anyway.

Julidochromis transcriptus or the dwarf marlieri Gombe would be my choice.

Neolamprologus buescheri are a great fish, one of my favourites, but also can be challenging due to aggressive behaviour once paired. You will really need to segregate their territory from others.

I would drop the Paracyp's as they are more rock dwellers, and go with Cyprichromis leptosoma of some variant.
 

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Agree with the above, but want to reiterate a large school of Cyprichromis (15-25) would be terrific. :thumb:

-Avoid the big julies (marlieri, regani, and dickfeldi- but Gombe variants, transcriptus and ornatus are fine)

- Start with 6 of the altos, neolamps and julies in order to get a smaller number that will coexist.

- Multies are my favorite shelly. Get 5 or more to start, and give them 4-6 shells per fish. Stack the shells in a loose pile- females often will choose lower level shells for spawning. Keep the shell bed at least 8" away from any rocks or plants.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thx for your advices. Based on it I will preliminary go for
N.buescheri
A.calvus or compressiceps - still not decided
N.multifasciatus
J. transcriptus Pemba, if will be available, 2nd choice will be J.marlieri Gombe but I like ornatus as well :D

Are there any alternative for Cyprichromis?

Is it possible to have two species of shellies (ocellatus or other living in pairs) in my tank? I like to observe them :)
 

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peter-trnava said:
Thx for your advices. Based on it I will preliminary go for
N.buescheri
A.calvus or compressiceps - still not decided
N.multifasciatus
J. transcriptus Pemba, if will be available, 2nd choice will be J.marlieri Gombe but I like ornatus as well :D

Are there any alternative for Cyprichromis?

Is it possible to have two species of shellies (ocellatus or other living in pairs) in my tank? I like to observe them :)
2 shellies can be done, but with specific species. You could add brevis in with the multies, for example. But I would avoid the occelatus types as being too territorial for another shelly.

Cyps are pretty unique in their open water behaviors; sometimes Paracyprichromis are used, but they like the rocks quite a bit. With choosing 3 rock dwellers, I don't think you'll have good luck with paracyps, but cyps are still a viable option.
 

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It wouldn't be a true Tanganyikan-only tank, but you could introduce an upper-strata dither fish. I have australian rainbows as a dither fish in one of my tanks with Tanganyikans (leleupi), and they do fine. The cichlids basically ignore them, and the rainbows are fast enough to get away when they swim too close to a rock pile. Of course giant danios and a few others will also work. I would think that many of the Malawi haps or peacocks might fill in that gap, too, if you aren't worried about being unorthodox.
 

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Many of the haps and peacocks, if not all, are going to be unhappy with those Tangs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Nice discussion, thank God I have still time to decide.
Have a look on my DIY BG. Finally it will go up by 5-6 cm. Left side covered with sand. Missing part in front of overflow.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I draw 1st draft of layout and kindly ask you for comment if it will fit needs of selected fishes.
Short description:
3D DIY background and rock piles (left and righ side) for altos, julies and paracyps
A zone -shellies ocellatus like spec
B zone - shellies multies
Cyps will ocupate open water and front/middle part
Tank will planted with anubias, microsorium and mosses.

 

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Great graphics- but I have a few suggestions.

1. You have three rock dwelling species listed- to get those three to live peacefully, they will need very distinct territories. That is going to require much more open space in your tank. Consolidate your rocks into 4 piles, with small, narrow caves incorporated. Between each pile you will need at least 8" of open sand.

The scale here is 1 square = 3", and I've made the tank 72x18"


2. To maximize territory space, your rocks will need to be flat or replaced with caves. Stacked slate is popular for this reason. There are several brands of caves that look natural, or you can carefully chose angular and flat rocks to create caves.

2. With three rock dwellers, you'll only have room for 1 shell dweller... not that occelatus types would tolerate another shelly anyway. If you decide you'd rather have two shellies, then pick from multies OR similis with brevis as the second species.

This is just from my experience, and I'm sure other folks have either had better or worse luck with your suggested combination of fish. :popcorn:
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
TY vm for very valuable comments and clear scheme.
Here I have more questions:
1. Shell bed - is it necessarily to keep distance from glass?
2. Does it make sense to create robust BG with lot of caves & rifts? (as I already built)
3. Are there any rules how tall have to be rock pile?
 

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you're welcome :D

1. No problem. Particularly with multies, you can pile the shells up to the glass.

2. Yes- but be careful that your distinct territories are still distinct. After you get fish in there, you may find an aggressive fish claiming the whole background length across the bottom. If you can, limit any spawning type territory in the bottom 8 inches of the background.

3. No limit- except safety. You can make the piles as short or high as you like, as long as there's no danger of collapse or rocks falling into glass. Note the appropriate size of crevice/caves for each fish (for example, calvus like upright slits).
 

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Hmm. Having flat places where fish can't hide would help, along with limiting any cover or structure near the bottom. In my diagram, there's no structure along the back between the corners. I think you could still plant through the middle, but maybe just not all the way down. This will be a bit of trial and error, but start with leaving some empty space in front of the background through the central part of the tank.

btw- your DIY background looks fabulous- can you post some larger pictures of it?
 

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peter-trnava said:
triscuit said:
you're welcome :D

If you can, limit any spawning type territory in the bottom 8 inches of the background.
Do you mean to cut out all caves, rifts ...?
Yes... I mean make it flatter. But please post a larger picture of the real background.
 
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