Is red sandstone safe for cichlid aquarium? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 3 Old 02-04-2014, 02:55 PM Thread Starter
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Is red sandstone safe for cichlid aquarium?

I am about ready to setup my 55 gal. Tank I resealed recently. I live in the country and we have an abundance of red sandstone. Was thinking i could use the crushed stuff as a substrate and the various sized slabs for caves, nooks and crannies. This will be a slow process. Thinking do substrate, water then a couple of cheap starter fish to cycle and get happy. Then introduce some cichlids. Want to have a set of convicts but not sure what I can put with them. I want a lively moving tank for grandkids too appreciate. Any thoughts?
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post #2 of 3 Old 02-04-2014, 07:22 PM
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One simple way to test most rocks is to pour some vinegar on them, if it fizzes and bubbles it is not safe, if it doesnt then give it a good clean and it should be ok.

The only issue with sandstone is overtime, it will dissolve and crack leaving a mess in the tank. Slate is a good alternative to use along with texas holey rock or dry marine reef rock.

Ideally, if i can be avoided, you want to NOT cycle a tank with fish, it is extremely stressful for them and can affect their health long term, also you end up with fish that may not be compatible with what fish you want.

Here is an article on cycling which will give you an idea as to fishless cycling.

55g is a nice size of Cichlids, some more colorful easy to keep cichlids which would work in that size tank are African Cichlids.
Yellow Labs, Acei, Rusty, Red Zebra would all work in that tank and give your grand kids some colorful fish to look at. In that size tank, you could keep about 12-15 fish.

If convicts are what you want, then there are a number of tank mates you can keep in that size tank.
Jack dempseys(ONLY one as they can be aggressive to other fish)
Plecos (Bristlenose)
Texas cichlid
Green Terrors (You can keep a pair in a 55g provided they are already mated)
Gold severums

I would only get a MATED pair of convicts, or several juveniles and let them pair off, once a pair is formed, REMOVE the others, convicts are aggressive to other convicts when paired and sexually mature.

10g Fry / Hospital / QT tank (as needed)

75g Saltwater Reef, Ocellaris Clownfish, Lyretail Antias (baby), Lemon damsel, Longtail Fairy Wrasse, purple dottyback, snails, crabs and a few LPS corals.

220g Still sitting empty (come on Lottery I need the numbers to come up!)
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post #3 of 3 Old 02-04-2014, 08:50 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for your input. I will drop the sandstone idea. I found some limestone at a local store. I like the idea of the african cichlids you listed. Going to try the fishless cycle. Going with black painted background and the jack black live gravel. Again, thanks.
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