how many african cichlids in a 55 gallon tank - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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post #1 of 11 Old 04-01-2011, 10:10 PM Thread Starter
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Question how many african cichlids in a 55 gallon tank

hello i am wondering how many African cichlids Malawi mbuna can i put in my tank?

usually the rule is like one inch of fish per gallon of water... but cichlids like crowding so...
i have an emporer400 and an aqua clear 110 on the tank right now and nothing in it thus far.... i think i want to add some java moss but thats it....

let me know...

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post #2 of 11 Old 04-01-2011, 10:53 PM
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i had 19 in my 75g
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post #3 of 11 Old 04-04-2011, 05:01 PM
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In a 55 I would go with 3 groups of 5. And be prepared to do double maint on your tank. Good luck.

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post #4 of 11 Old 04-04-2011, 05:35 PM Thread Starter
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ok so between 11 and 15 is what i am looking at? ok thanks all
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post #5 of 11 Old 04-04-2011, 08:05 PM
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Check out African Cichlids: Welcome to The Cichlid Recipe

It's a wealth of information.

You will need to start with more than you want because they are very difficult to sex as juvies.
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post #6 of 11 Old 04-04-2011, 11:12 PM Thread Starter
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So a bunch of little ones then weed out the excess (males) and what sell them on craigslist? I was talking to someone who said he kept only males and that decreased agressiveness cause there were no females.... I am uninterested in breeding for sure ... But I want healthy fish.
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post #7 of 11 Old 04-05-2011, 12:28 AM
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All male tanks can work - but be careful of the species. It isn't that they fight for females. They fight for territory, which means food. They graze on the rocks within their territory, scraping the algae off. The alpha male just happens to be the one who holds the best territory, and is first choice for the females. Make no mistake - females are aggressive and territorial as well, especially if they are holding.

If you are looking for a colorful display tank, look into peacocks and other haps (who are open water swimmers). An all male peacock tank can look amazing! And the stocking density doesn't have to be so high. Look into the Placidochromis electra, Cyrtocara moori, Sciaenochromis ahli.
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post #8 of 11 Old 04-05-2011, 11:14 AM Thread Starter
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Ok yes I suppose that's right I am looking for a display tank... I love peacocks they are so darn purdy
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post #9 of 11 Old 04-06-2011, 02:28 PM Thread Starter
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ok the following is from the cichlid recipe thingy... so i am wondering if when she says a trio she means 3 of these fish so between 22-25 fish? i am wondering if i am reading it wrong which is very possible....

  • 1 trio Protomelas
  • 1 trio Aulonocara
  • 1 trio Copadichromis
  • 1 trio Labidochromis or Cynotilapia
  • 4 Neolamprologus (larger species)
  • 2 Eretmodus or 1 trio Haplochromis
  • 2 Julidochromis (larger species)
  • 1 Synodontis Catfish
  • 1 medium sized Plecostomus
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post #10 of 11 Old 04-06-2011, 05:27 PM
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Yep - that many in a rift lake tank is not unusual. Still research the individual species though.

It took me months to work out my stocking plan! lol But I was working with much narrower parameters as in all mbuna. It's tricky - rift lake cichlids are so different to Americans. It's almost like stocking a saltwater tank, but with 3 times the fish.
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