Are South American and African Cichlids compatible? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 9 Old 08-25-2010, 08:13 PM Thread Starter
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Are South American and African Cichlids compatible?

I have a 55 tank and its in its first month of cycling. Ive stocked it with two blood parrots, two jack dempseys, a pleco, a black convict, a black knife fish and an oscar along with three gourami.

I have no clue about African Cichlids and was wondering if someone could help me pick out the right ones or if they are not right at all for my tank
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post #2 of 9 Old 08-25-2010, 08:29 PM
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Originally Posted by mcb5522 View Post
I have a 55 tank and its in its first month of cycling. Ive stocked it with two blood parrots, two jack dempseys, a pleco, a black convict, a black knife fish and an oscar along with three gourami.

I have no clue about African Cichlids and was wondering if someone could help me pick out the right ones or if they are not right at all for my tank
Seems like your tank is already seriously overstocked? I could be wrong though...
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post #3 of 9 Old 08-25-2010, 08:49 PM
I have one jack dempsey in a 55 gallon and that is pushing it. Your tank is way overstocked. A single Oscar should be in a 75 gallon. Also, once the oscar and jack dempseys get bigger, the will most likely kill/eat the gouramis.
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post #4 of 9 Old 08-26-2010, 03:04 AM
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Agree, you have some very serious problems with that group of fish.

To answer your initial question, no, you cannot combine SA and African (by which I assume you mean rift lake) cichlids, their water parameter requirements are poles apart.

Byron.

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 #5 of 9 Old 08-26-2010, 05:17 PM
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Extremely over stocked.
I have to differ with Byron although I have a caveat with my difference. While the ones you have I would not mix, the oscar and dempseys will destroy anything later in life that isnt their size or bigger, some Africans can be mixed. Now the caveat comes in as to where the fish literally come from, not where their wild grandparents live. Many fish are farmed here in Florida and our water is pretty high in PH 8.3 and pretty hard. I do African water straight out of the tap with minor enhancements. Many south American fish are the same way though. My neighbor breeds and raises mass numbers of discus in dechlorinated tap water. Crazy, heretic, shun the non-believe,r and all that but yes, he is a commercial discus breeder with 8.3 ph tapwater in his tanks(and my planted tank as well, they are all staring at me wanting more food as I type this). A couple of the younger ones seem to find my school of asian raspboras to be amazingly interesting. In tanks in the past I have had frontosas, peacocks and yellow lamps with angels, clown loaches and silver sharks and had zero issues with aggression or water issues. Why? Because aside from the clown loaches(which I do not think are farmed, dont quote me on this though) the rest are farm raised here in the US, many in the same geographical area. They are also relatively well behaved fish iin general as well which helps(angels can be antsy).

As for more aggressive members from each continent, I think the size of the south american bad boys would beat the snot out of their African brethren and would not advise adding anything more to your tank for what you have will already outgrow it.

Self proclaimed fish and beer snob.
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post #6 of 9 Old 08-26-2010, 09:18 PM
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I combined on convict with two yellow labs in the past and the labs lasted about 2 months or 2 and a half before the convict began pushing them into the corner...and it ended very bad...
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post #7 of 9 Old 08-26-2010, 11:44 PM
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Yeah, if you are going to do it you need to stick with the lesser aggressive species. I think for the most part, south americans are too much for almost any African cichlid to handle. I cant think of any aggressive African off hand that is normal for aquaria that could stay long term with any of the SA big boys. They are just alot more fragile. They have the aggression, but lack the strength to back it up. Like a lionfish, all bark and no bite.

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post #8 of 9 Old 08-27-2010, 03:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron View Post
Agree, you have some very serious problems with that group of fish.

To answer your initial question, no, you cannot combine SA and African (by which I assume you mean rift lake) cichlids, their water parameter requirements are poles apart.

Byron.
+one


Differing diets should also be a consideration. While some South American cichlids( Many),, do superbly with foods high in animal proteins,, Africans in the same tank would quite possibly,(probably) become bloated for they need substantial vegetable matter,algae, being more herbivorus than carnivore. No one ever tells the African that gobbling up shrimp,earthworms,etc is bad for them in the long run .

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #9 of 9 Old 08-29-2010, 05:04 PM
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i would suggest getting some more tanks and separating a lot of them... most of those fish will seriously out grow that tank and begin to bully and even seriously damage one another especially the Oscar. Oscars can reach as big as 12" and the knife fish can reach up to 20" just a word of advice. hope all works out
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