Dwarf Cichlids - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 6 Old 12-16-2009, 02:52 PM Thread Starter
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Dwarf Cichlids

Can anyone tell me if there is such thing as a dwarf cichlid that can live well in a pH of 7.3-7.9. I really like rams but until I get a new aquarium, an RO unit, and an established planted tank I cant keep them. I really love cichlids. I'm hoping there is a particular species or two out there in the dwarf size I can keep.
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post #2 of 6 Old 12-16-2009, 02:57 PM
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Check out the shell dwellers from Lake Tanganyika (African).......Alot of them stay under 3 inches and would be a decent fit for your water parameters............
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post #3 of 6 Old 12-16-2009, 03:04 PM Thread Starter
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Do you have any specific names on these "shell dwellers"? Thanks! Randall
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post #4 of 6 Old 12-16-2009, 03:13 PM
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Brevis, occeltus, strapersii, similis, multifasciatus are all good candidates. Occelatus are definatly rowdier and way more aggressive and will need a bit more space than the others. They are all in the lamprologus genus.
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post #5 of 6 Old 12-16-2009, 03:16 PM
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Neolamprologus or lamprologus........these are the family name of the fish......Thier are alot of different species in this family....Most all stay small......Please do your research on their different needs........I really dont want to give you "pet store" names for these fish, because it can vary greatly from one area to another
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post #6 of 6 Old 12-16-2009, 04:59 PM
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FP's suggestons are rift lake cichlids from Africa, so that is one option. If you are thinking more of South American dwarfs, yes, there are some that will manage fine with slightly basic (al;kaline) conditions. The cousin of the common ram is one, Mikrogeophagus altispinosus, common name Bolivian Ram. It has been caught in water with a pH around 7.6 and moderate hardness as well as in soft acidic water--in different areas mind, I'm not suggesting a particular fish can go from one extreme to another.

There are also several Apistogramma species that occur in slightly basic water. I researched a list in an earlier thread for someone, I can't find it now.


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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