cichlids that stay up top - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 16 Old 12-17-2006, 08:57 AM Thread Starter
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cichlids that stay up top

I have a 100 gallon tank I had a accident and lost most of my fish(dont ask long story) I was left with only 2 little catfish and a lemon yellow (yellow with a black stripe on its top fin.) I got yesterday a peacock but all my fish stay near the bottom of the tank unless its feeding time. I know that differnt fish like certian parts of the tank. Is this true also for Cichilds? If so what can I get that will stay near the top of the tank?
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post #2 of 16 Old 12-17-2006, 09:01 AM
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Hi and welcome aboard.

Your lemon yellow sounds like Yellow Lab. Pretty peaceful in nature. Some cichlids do occupy different levels of water though it is very rare to find species that occupy the surface. Angelfish and discus occupy mostly the mid level. Some occupy mostly the bottom as they establish caves as part of their territory.
I haven't known any cichlid that can stay at the surface.

Your cichlids stay in the bottom because most of the time, they try to establish territories.

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post #3 of 16 Old 12-17-2006, 09:41 AM
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In my experience, Nimbochromis venestus (giraffe hap) are more of an open water Malawi Cichlid, They are generally more peaceable in nature and will occupy the mid to upper range of the tank. Venestus are also a much more active and personable fish and will will bring out a more active nature of its other tankmates. Unless you plan to breed the fish, I would recommend a few more Labidochromis caeruleus (electric yellow labs) and a few venestus. you can also add other more peacable peacocks as they as well will peacably co-exist with the Nimbochromis venestus and Labidochromis caeruleus. Should you decide to go this route, you may wish to establish a grow out tank in the event you find one of your Labidochromis caeruleus females holding, as the fry will have little chance against the voracious appetite of the larger Nimbochromis venestus.

FYI
Nimbochromis venestus are ambush hunters, their splotchy pattern is meant to resemble that of a decaying fish. The Nimbochromis venestus will lay on its side, motionless at the floor of the tank, and when possible, partially buried in the substrate in efforts to mimic a corpse. They will lay in wait until unsuspecting fry approach seeking to forage meat from the corpse. This unique hunting method is one that is shared by the Venestus' sister species the Nimbochromis Livingstonii.

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post #4 of 16 Old 12-17-2006, 10:47 AM
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Have you thought about rainbowfish or hatchetfish for the top part of the tank - or maybe they won't do well with your particular fish. I have centrals (peaceful ones), so nothing is quite so risky. I don't actually know it will work for you, but might be worth looking into.
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post #5 of 16 Old 12-17-2006, 11:03 AM
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Tropical fish should not be mixed with African Cichlids. Even the most passive African Cichlids are aggressive in nature. They can sense the docile nature of community tropicals and their aggression will dominate the tank. additionally, african cichlids have different dietary needs and ideal water parameters. Community Tropicals in general require a ph of 7.2, African Cichlids require a much higher ph, ideally in the area of 8.0. Though in general, most fishes will be able to tolerate deviations in their ideal PH ranges, this does create a more stressful environment for the fishes, leading to stunted growth, altered behavioral and aggression patterns, poor coloring, increased suseptibility to illness via viral, parisitic, and fungal infection, and decreased lifespan.
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Originally Posted by saganco
Have you thought about rainbowfish or hatchetfish for the top part of the tank - or maybe they won't do well with your particular fish. I have centrals (peaceful ones), so nothing is quite so risky. I don't actually know it will work for you, but might be worth looking into.

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post #6 of 16 Old 12-17-2006, 01:35 PM Thread Starter
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new question

Ok so I was looking at this peacock for about 2 weeks at the storeand finnely I bought it yesterday. It was so pretty it was like rainbow color. once I got it home and in my tank it looked brown now today its color seems to be coming back out. Is that normal? will his color come back compleatly? I hope so because I was so disapointed.
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post #7 of 16 Old 12-17-2006, 05:37 PM
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It is common for most fishes to lose color when stressed. Being purchased from a LFS, transported to your home, and placed into a foreign environment is very stressful for any fish. If you have provided fitting environment for the fish, his/her normal coloring should return within a few days.

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post #8 of 16 Old 12-17-2006, 05:40 PM Thread Starter
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WoWthanks im soooo happy to hear that.
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post #9 of 16 Old 12-17-2006, 06:59 PM
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no problem, any time. Glad to be of assistance

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post #10 of 16 Old 12-17-2006, 10:40 PM
I have found that adding water motion (power heads, pump, ect) has my cichlids much more active throughout the entire water column (except for the gobie cichlids, buffalo heads, and of course the julis). No they are not all kept in the same tanks, but in other tanks 'cause big fish DO eat little fish.
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