Cichlids in a 55 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 3 Old 08-25-2010, 02:25 PM Thread Starter
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Cichlids in a 55

Alright guys long story short is I have a 55 gallon I'd like to set up as a cichlid tank. I've been told that for multiple small groups and with a group or two of non-cichlids, South American are better than Africans? I'm up for suggestions for whatever though. This is an except from another forum where i posted this question, it outlines my stocking plan as of now. Thoughts?

I'm not deadset on having Rams, but for some reason a group of angels just turns me off. So maybe a group or two of Apistoses, one group of Rams, a single Angel (again for some reason a GROUP of Angels turns me off, but one single specimen is really attractive to me, lol), and one or two groups of non-cichlid schooling fish? Except for the schooling fishes, when I say groups I mean 3 or 5, preferably 3, again for some reason I just don't like the idea of large groups of cichlids.
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post #2 of 3 Old 08-25-2010, 08:03 PM
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For a Jack Dempsey you would only be able to have ONE Jack Dempsey in a 55 gallon.

I had a Jack Dempsey and didn't do research and was dumb to fish when I got him, didn't do research just liked him and bought him...I just gave him up to a local pet store here because I have a 29 gallon that he has outgrown.

As for other cichlids, you can add I believe TWO to a 55 gallon of certain types. It all depends on what type of cichlid it is, though. Also how long they cichlid will grow to.
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post #3 of 3 Old 08-26-2010, 02:01 AM
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Hello TMF89, and welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum.

A couple things pop out at me in your post. First angels. These are shoaling fish, which means they must be in a group (except for a breeding pair); they "expect" to have others around them, and they have a social structure within the group. A single fish will be stressed, and stress weakens the immune system causing other health problems that would otherwise not occur. And it can bring out aggressiveness. Please don't get one angel, either none or a group of 5 in a 55g. With carefully chosen companions.

Many of the dwarf cichlids are wild caught, meaning you must pay attention to sometimes quite specific water parameters. Know the fish and what it needs, otherwise the "community" will be anything but a peaceful community. Inappropriate water parameters also stress out fish. Some of the Apistogramma species are best in a pair (male/female), some in groups of one male and 2-3 females; the Bolivian Ram works well on its own, it is solitary in its habitat except when spawning.

Hope this helps a bit. We have fish profiles here, second tab from the left in the blue bar at the top, or click on the shaded name in posts. Not too many dwarf cichlids yet, but some are there.


Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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