I want to stock a Cichlid biotope, but need help. - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 7 Old 11-27-2011, 09:19 AM Thread Starter
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I want to stock a Cichlid biotope, but need help.

Hi, everyone.

I would like to stock a cichlid biotope in my new tank. It is a 46 Gallon bowfront tank, measuring 36" long by 15" back by 20" tall.

I have a few cichlids I like, and would like to stock (obviously not all in the same tank), and these are:

Green Terrors
Blue Acaras
Keyhole Cichlids

First off, I'd like to know if all of these fish are suitable for a 46 Gallon tank? Again, not all in there at once, but as a species tank with an optimal number of fish in there.

Secondly, how would I go about making a biotope? I think by researching the area, and putting in plants and substrate that occur there naturally?

Thirdly, which of these fish would do well in a 46 Gallon? A Bala Shark would fit in one, but would not do well in it. Would these fish thrive in a tank of this size?

Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 7 Old 11-27-2011, 12:36 PM
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So my understanding is you want to create a biotope tank around one of the species above? The question is how specific do you want to get? Do you want to replicate the exact river these fish come from or want a general "south american"/"central american" biotope? I will tell you right now that the oscar and green terror are not suitable for your tank. They get too big. Do you want a single fish or a pair(s). I can't help you much with the south american cichlids. They are not really my area of knowledge and there are more knowledgable people when it comes to them I can help you on the centrals though. A pair of firemouth cichlids or a pair of convicts will work well in your sized tank. Use many rocks and driftwood to stimulate a natural environment. No need for plants. These fish are found with livebearers in the wild so swordtails or mollies would work well with them. Here is a short video on how to setup a small CA biotope. The fish are HRP.
Basic CA cichlid aquascape - YouTube

I would suggest a pair of centrarchus for that tank personally. They are stunning central american cichlids and and have a great personality. I have a small pair in a 29 gallon tank. Here is a short video of them. Tank looks crudy but it is a work in progress.
The Centrarchus pair - YouTube
Here is a pic of an adult male from the internet.

Only other advice is do a whole lotta research. It ]would really help if you narrowed down exactly which species you want to go with. Good luck.

"responsible fish keeper?... Didn't know there was any other kind"

I am not retarded I just can't spell
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post #3 of 7 Old 11-27-2011, 04:02 PM Thread Starter
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Wow, those look really cool! The tanks look awesome :)

I'm sorry, but what does HRP stand for? I've never come across that term before.

The Centrarchus seem quite cool, too. What is the species in your tank?

Also, I've narrowed my choices down to the Firemouths, Keyhole Cichlids, Convicts, Angels, HRP, and the Centrarchus.

I'd like to get as specific as possible with the biotope itself.

Last edited by DJMonty; 11-27-2011 at 04:15 PM.
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post #4 of 7 Old 11-27-2011, 04:43 PM
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HRP stands for honduran red point. They are a small growing crytoheros species. related to convicts. They are smaller and less aggressive. Just to be clear the first video is not mine it is just a video I found. The second video is of my little centrarchus pair. The other fish in the tank is a fenestratus male who is acclimating in their tank where he will not be beat up by my more aggressive fish in my 125 gallon tank. I know the centrarchus are from costa rica and the firemouth cichlids are from mexico. Convicts you can find pretty much anywhere but IDK where they originate. For CA tanks I would just do the rocks and driftwood along with some livebearers. A pair of either the HRP, convicts, firemouth or centrarchus would look great in your tank. I would start with 6 and wait for a pair to form. I see you live in the UK. I do not know about the availability of cichlids there so you might not be able to find the centrarchus or HRP. Although I do know plenty of UK fish keepers who have them IDK where they got them from.

"responsible fish keeper?... Didn't know there was any other kind"

I am not retarded I just can't spell
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post #5 of 7 Old 11-27-2011, 04:53 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, Rrcoolj. I've been looking and I can't seem to find any HRPs or Centrarchus around here, but I'll make a trip to the LFS in a few days and see if it's possible to order them in.

Is a pair going to be the maximum I could have in a species tank of the HRPs, Centrarchus, or Firemouths?

If I decide against the previous three cichlids, how many Apistogramma Agassizi/Cactuodes could I have in a species tank?

Last edited by DJMonty; 11-27-2011 at 04:54 PM. Reason: Typo
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post #6 of 7 Old 11-27-2011, 05:27 PM
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The centrarchus and firemotuh cichlids will fill the tank as one pair. They can get pretty big so there will not be whole lot of empty space. As for the HRP you could probably get away with 2 pairs. As for the appistos, 2 pairs should work well in that sized tank. Maybe even 3 depending on which species you get.

"responsible fish keeper?... Didn't know there was any other kind"

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post #7 of 7 Old 11-27-2011, 05:30 PM Thread Starter
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Okay, thanks.

The Apistos I have available to me are Cactuodes and Agassizi. I'm probably going for the Centrarchus, HRPs, or Firemouths though.
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