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I have 4 new cichlids in my brand new tank...now what!??!?

Discussion in 'Cichlids' started by cichlidfirsttimer, Jan 3, 2017.

  1. cichlidfirsttimer

    cichlidfirsttimer AC Members

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    So I've done a lot of research, but there's not a lot of advice out there about how often I should be getting new fish to get my tank "overstocked."

    I bought 4 fish to start with today.
    2 Albino Metraclima Pyrsonotos
    2 Pseudotropheus Crabro

    One calculator tells me to get 27 fish because my tank is 55 gallons, a different site says 64 inches of fish once they are full grown adults.

    Nowhere does it tell me how to not have casualties of war when adding fish. I know I can't just add one at a time and that 4-6 is a better number.

    Please be gentle... I may have bought the wrong fish but I am learning and I had to start somewhere. There is not a lot of selection here, so I may just order some custom from the store.
     
  2. Tifftastic

    Tifftastic "With your powers combined . . ."

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    Your water parameters will tell you when you can add fish. Additionally, these fish are fairly aggressive and you'll need to be careful to rearrange the decor when you next add fish as well as to not add a species that is much more peaceful than these two.
    With mains you'll want to over crowd a bit to reduce aggression, but you have to make sure you're keeping up with water changes and that your filtration can handle it. With the fish you have I'd say you max out at maybe 10 fish at the most? Maybe 12. . . But probably 10 or less. But that's on my opinion. Someone else might have a different one.
     
    Frank Castle likes this.
  3. cichlidfirsttimer

    cichlidfirsttimer AC Members

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    Well shoot!! I wanted as peaceful a cichlid tank I could get. The info I read on each said maybe the albino red fin zebras were mildly aggressive and the bumblebees aggressive...
    I was going to add some Labidochromis Caeruleus Nkhata Bay and some Lodotropheus Sprengerae, but I think those are both peaceful...
    What about some Pseudotroheus Acei?

    Why do you only suggest 10? I thought that I was supposed to load up the tank?
     
  4. Tifftastic

    Tifftastic "With your powers combined . . ."

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    With each of the fish getting about 6 inches and having fairly thick bodies, producing a decent amount of waste and having fairly good size territories, 10 or so is over crowding IMO.
     
  5. Tifftastic

    Tifftastic "With your powers combined . . ."

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    For example, I don't have a full tank shot, but you can see from the side that this tank is crowded. It contains 15 Dimidiochromis compressiceps that are 4-6 inches long. The tank is just slightly taller than your average 55 gal (custom made for the aquarium room I work in). Only 9 of the fish are in the pic as the other 6 have claimed the bottom as their territory. If this tank were in my home, it would be no where near as crowded for the sake of the fish's health mainly. Luckily this is on a huge filter, wit a 300 gallon sump, keeping the parameters in check. 20161208_123942.jpg
     
  6. cichlidfirsttimer

    cichlidfirsttimer AC Members

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    So do you suggest that I now get a couple labdichromis caeruleus and some lodiotropheus sprenerae because they are more peaceful?
     
  7. FreshyFresh

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    -firsttimer welcome!

    Sounds like an interesting setup/plan you've got going on. It's always hit/miss with groups of aggressive fish. A lot of variable at play.

    Did you cycle your tank? Got a test kit for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate?
     
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  8. cichlidfirsttimer

    cichlidfirsttimer AC Members

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    Love your choice of words freshyfresh...I think i'm in WAY over my head! I got my water tested at a very reputable aquarium store that said it was good. I am feeling like maybe I should have added more fish at a time than just 4.
    I am going to pick up a test kit today because i'm not going to be running to the store every time i need tests done.

    Any suggestions for fish to add...I'm dying to get more.. I knew I should have asked more questions before I bit the bullet.
     
  9. FreshyFresh

    FreshyFresh AC Members

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    So it sounds like you haven't yet established a nitrogen cycle in your tank? I wound not add any more fish until you do so.

    I wound't recommend relying on a fish store for water parameter measurement. You're going to want to buy/mailorder an API master test kit. $25-30, but it will last for years.

    In the meantime you'll want to do water changes often. Like several times per week.
     
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  10. cichlidfirsttimer

    cichlidfirsttimer AC Members

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    Our tank is used and he gave us the filter to go with it including some gross looking filters to help get the new tank cycled quicker. I waited a week or so and took the water in after it was clear and the store said it was good. I do plan on getting a test kit for sure.
    What made you think that I didn't cycle the tank?
     
    Frank Castle likes this.

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