08-07-2006, 09:30 PM
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If I might chime in for a minute. Cichlids require research. Lots of it. But if you've done a proper and thourough job of researching, then they are no more difficult to keep than any other fishes. Malawi Cichlids are some of the most colorful freshwater fishes available and with the proper research, you can create a stunning and successful rift lake setup.
A few good research points for Lake Malawi Cichlids
behaviors of the different fish
ideal water parameters
keep in mind that Malawi cichlids are aggressive fish, and they do not take well to new additions. It would behoove you to either fishless cycle, or cycle your tank completely with a few inexpensive tropical fish that can be returned once the cycle is complete, then add the entire stock about 1/3 at a time, with a 1 week gap between groups.
My recommendation would be to go for a single species tank of Yellow labs. A large group of one species really makes for a beautiful tank, especially labs.
one last key point that will save a lot of hassle. Hybridization is one of the leading causes of overly aggressive fish. If you are spending that much on the tank, do yourself a favor and get your fish from a reputable source. If you can find a breeder that sells F1 fish, it would be in your best interest to go that route.