Shell Dweller set up? Is it okay - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 26 Old 06-26-2011, 11:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Byron View Post
There is not sufficient hardness and the tank will acidify. This is not good for any fish native to the rift lakes, tank raised notwithstanding. Some of you responding may have medfium hard or fairly hard water, that is a very different thing from the very soft (at GH 4-5) that Christople has, and it will not work. The ph on its own is not the issue. The fish need the mineral in the water or they will not be healthy long-term.
Ah i see what you are saying, I was not thinking about GH.

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

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post #12 of 26 Old 06-27-2011, 10:28 AM Thread Starter
So if I did get shellies and raise the GH and in turn the pH would I need to buy buffers to be sure water changes don't stress out the fish? How much have you guys paid for shellies because they are 10 bucks a pop for the normal strain. and if they are juvies that 60 bucks... more than the tank and sand combined.

38 gallon :
Pelvicachromis Taeniatus Nigerian Red not yet breeding pair
4 Pangio Kuhli
12 Hemmigrammus Bleheri
2 Botia Lohachata
1 Botia Straita
1 Ancistrus Sp.
6 Poecilia Reticulata




The Wet Spot Portland Oregon!!!!!!

ADA: Do!aqua Iwagumi 10 gallon size!
7 Clown Killies
7 Ghost shrimp
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post #13 of 26 Old 06-27-2011, 11:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Christople View Post
So if I did get shellies and raise the GH and in turn the pH would I need to buy buffers to be sure water changes don't stress out the fish? How much have you guys paid for shellies because they are 10 bucks a pop for the normal strain. and if they are juvies that 60 bucks... more than the tank and sand combined.
In my view, you would not need buffers if you use aragonite sand or cichlid substrate.
You could just do smaller water changes say 20 percent, this would result in next to no stress at water change time for the majority of the water would still be of proper hardness.
Can't help you with regards to prices on shellies. It's all about what you are willing to pay for fishes you want.
I have a couple of fishes that I coughed up 50 dollars a piece for(plecos). Could have got them cheaper online but shipping cost's would have made them the same price I paid at local fish store.
Prices for these fish are why I suggested in previous post to get water right before purchasing.I also paid considerably more for Discus I have cared for in the past but they are what I wanted, I saved for them.
Back when I kept livebearer's, (my water is medium hard) they seldom lived longer than a few weeks,months.I then decided on placing approx a half cup of crushed coral per 20 gal in a mesh bag and placing this in the filter compartment.The coral had to be cleaned under hot tapwater or replaced each month for it became covered with silt,mulm,dirt,bacteria ,and became less effective as per test result's.
Were it me,, and these were the fish I was set on, I would spend the money on cichlid substrate that would be more effective long term at keeping water parameter's suitable for the shellies.There are a few of these substrates available.
Remember,, aquariums are little more than glass boxes of water that we throw money into.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.

Last edited by 1077; 06-27-2011 at 11:03 AM.
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post #14 of 26 Old 06-27-2011, 11:35 AM
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I agree. Once a tank is established, the natural biology will tend to maintain stability. Water changes with water that is not too far different is not going to be an issue. Any temporary change in pH can be handled by the fish, they are accustomed to this in nature. As long as it is not significant. If it is deemed necessary, smaller amounts of water can be changed, say 25% twice weekly instead of 50% once.

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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post #15 of 26 Old 06-27-2011, 11:49 AM
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Pricing will somewhat depend on area but tanganyikans tend to be on the higher end of the price spectrum. I know africans are nearly impossible to find here and are very high once you find them. I would always have to order online. Save up if you really want them and you shouldn't be dissapointed. And since multies breed so prolifically you can always give them back to a LFS for credit and get supplies/fish/etc.

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

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post #16 of 26 Old 06-27-2011, 06:25 PM Thread Starter
I have them money and space just not getting the okay... I plan on getting argonite and the shellies with in this next month.

38 gallon :
Pelvicachromis Taeniatus Nigerian Red not yet breeding pair
4 Pangio Kuhli
12 Hemmigrammus Bleheri
2 Botia Lohachata
1 Botia Straita
1 Ancistrus Sp.
6 Poecilia Reticulata




The Wet Spot Portland Oregon!!!!!!

ADA: Do!aqua Iwagumi 10 gallon size!
7 Clown Killies
7 Ghost shrimp
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post #17 of 26 Old 06-28-2011, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
So I changed on my plan... I might convert my thirty eight gallon to a shellie tank with argonite. Could I have kribs,haps, or any other african species with them? I also just thought of a different shell species. Not sure which kind but they're out there

38 gallon :
Pelvicachromis Taeniatus Nigerian Red not yet breeding pair
4 Pangio Kuhli
12 Hemmigrammus Bleheri
2 Botia Lohachata
1 Botia Straita
1 Ancistrus Sp.
6 Poecilia Reticulata




The Wet Spot Portland Oregon!!!!!!

ADA: Do!aqua Iwagumi 10 gallon size!
7 Clown Killies
7 Ghost shrimp
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post #18 of 26 Old 06-28-2011, 11:11 AM
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Kribs won't like the same water and haps grow way to big and would eat your shellies most likely. Look at other tanganyikans. You could house some rockdwellers like julidochromis transcriptus and you might be able to house a small group of cyprichromis although they might need a 4 foot tank. Fast moving barbs will work as well as livebearers. With that footprint i would look at lamprologus stappersi. They are stunning shellies to keep but are a bit more aggressive to their own kind. You could keep 2-3 pairs in that tank if it is a 3ft tank.

"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 #19 of 26 Old 06-28-2011, 11:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Christople View Post
So I changed on my plan... I might convert my thirty eight gallon to a shellie tank with argonite. Could I have kribs,haps, or any other african species with them? I also just thought of a different shell species. Not sure which kind but they're out there
You could throw some Julidochromis in there with them. There are also a lot of other Shellies out there Occies, and Brevis are usually the most common, or maybe some Paracyprichromis. All of these are native to lake Tangynika. Most Malawi Cichlids are not suitable for a 38 gallon.

Last edited by lorax84; 06-28-2011 at 11:45 AM.
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post #20 of 26 Old 06-28-2011, 12:17 PM
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If you are going to put any rift lake cichlid in an aquarium, you should make up your mind that the aquarium will only house fish from the rift lakes, plus one of the appropriate catfish/pleco species that work. And then carefully select rift lake fish that are compatible, as noted by other members.

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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