Tank Mates for Cichlids - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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post #1 of 15 Old 04-16-2012, 10:06 PM Thread Starter
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Tank Mates for Cichlids

I'm posting this thread a bit more specific than my previous thread about tank mates. I have a mix of African and South American Cichlids, a Green Spotted Puffer, and 2 Pakistani Loaches. I have a few fish in mind that I would like to put in my tank. Here is just a small list:
-Elephant Nose
-More Green Spotted or Figure 8 Puffers
-Bristlenose Pleco
-African Butterflyfish
-Leopard Ctenopoma
-Fire Eel
-Clown Knife
-Any kind of Rams

Keep in mind that I only have a 29 gal. tank but am getting a 55 or bigger over the summer and right now the Cichlids area all juveniles none of which are bigger than an inch. I think that if the Cichlids grow up with these fish that they will not harm them as much as if they were already adults. Now obviously I could be absolutely off and that's why I'm posting this on this website. I'll appreciate any feedback. Thanks.
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post #2 of 15 Old 04-16-2012, 10:17 PM
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First of all, African and South American cichlids cannot live together as they need totally different water parameters.

What specifically do you have (cichlids)?

10g Fry / Hospital / QT tank (as needed)

75g Saltwater Reef, Ocellaris Clownfish, Lyretail Antias (baby), Lemon damsel, Longtail Fairy Wrasse, purple dottyback, snails, crabs and a few LPS corals.

220g Still sitting empty (come on Lottery I need the numbers to come up!)
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post #3 of 15 Old 04-16-2012, 10:39 PM Thread Starter
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The Cichlids are living fine together so far.. and I have
1 Tiger Oscar
Firemouth
Bumblebee
2 Kenyi
2 Electric Yellow
Convict
Red Zebra
Duboisi
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post #4 of 15 Old 04-17-2012, 08:53 AM
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not sure if this helps but my friend has two large jack dempsey's and has some mollys in there with a puffer and had no problems he put a divider up for a month or so then took it off and all fish are still there but the diffrence is he had other fish with the jacks when they where babys and when he bought the girls a tank he took the other fish out and put them in there so now he added more i think it has to be the temperment of the acutall fish but thats just my opininon

i dont label all cichlids as aggresive some are very mild manored and some are agressive just like people thats how i see it i have seen 2 betas live together in a tank and do just fine but i also seen them tear eachother apart it just depens on the fish alot of people may diagree butt if its prone to be aggresive and it never learned to live with other fish then it will be agressive when other fish are introduced but if it is raised with other fish i feel there is a good chance they will get along
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post #5 of 15 Old 04-17-2012, 08:59 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah thats what I thought too. I completely agree that if they grow up with the fish they wont be as aggressive towards them. They dont care about my puffer or my loaches at all so far, and I hope that will continue on to adulthood. That example definitely does help me so thank you.
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post #6 of 15 Old 04-17-2012, 09:18 AM
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No two situations are alike..it really depends on the nature of the fish..I have had some African cichlids, dubbed as mildly aggressive who have been absolute terrors.

Also African cichlids are not pairing fish, they are harem breeders, a single male and female will lead to the female being stressed possibly to death if she is not ready / willing to breed and the male is. Africans need to be kept in a 1-4 male to female ratio to help spread the aggression across multiple females. Most of the aggression is either co-specific males and females of the same species going after each other, or occurs at breeding time when the male is old enough to breed.

Out of the list you posted, the Kenyi and bumblebee are the most aggressive with the exception of the Oscar potentially. Also if anything from the wanted list, a bottom feeder such as a decent sized pleco would be a good addition.

10g Fry / Hospital / QT tank (as needed)

75g Saltwater Reef, Ocellaris Clownfish, Lyretail Antias (baby), Lemon damsel, Longtail Fairy Wrasse, purple dottyback, snails, crabs and a few LPS corals.

220g Still sitting empty (come on Lottery I need the numbers to come up!)
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post #7 of 15 Old 04-19-2012, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheKazpi View Post
I'm posting this thread a bit more specific than my previous thread about tank mates. I have a mix of African and South American Cichlids, a Green Spotted Puffer, and 2 Pakistani Loaches. I have a few fish in mind that I would like to put in my tank. Here is just a small list:
-Elephant Nose
-More Green Spotted or Figure 8 Puffers
-Bristlenose Pleco
-African Butterflyfish
-Leopard Ctenopoma
-Fire Eel
-Clown Knife
-Any kind of Rams

Keep in mind that I only have a 29 gal. tank but am getting a 55 or bigger over the summer and right now the Cichlids area all juveniles none of which are bigger than an inch. I think that if the Cichlids grow up with these fish that they will not harm them as much as if they were already adults. Now obviously I could be absolutely off and that's why I'm posting this on this website. I'll appreciate any feedback. Thanks.
Tazman has expertly responded on the cichlid issue. I just want to mention that the fish in this list here are generally incompatible for many reasons. At the very least, a 29g tank is much too small for some of them, and so is a 55g. Some of these are in our profiles, and they contain data on numbers, tank sizes, compatibility issues, etc. Please check the profiles.

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 #8 of 15 Old 04-19-2012, 12:21 PM
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I think one might want to also consider diet for the South American cichlids is a bit rich in animal proteins that African's will do poorly with .
No one tell's the poor African's that too much meaty foods will cause bloat, and they will happily consume it to the point where they do indeed become bloated.
African's should also have fair amount of algae and or spirulina in their diet and it wouldn't hurt the South American's to have some as well.
I agree with Tazman regarding water chemistry for these two distinct species ,They don't overlap much.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #9 of 15 Old 04-19-2012, 04:41 PM
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The green spotted puffer is brackish. I have one in a separate tank from my african cichlids, as I assumed that the ACs couldn't handle the salt. Is this correct?
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post #10 of 15 Old 04-19-2012, 06:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CatSoup View Post
The green spotted puffer is brackish. I have one in a separate tank from my african cichlids, as I assumed that the ACs couldn't handle the salt. Is this correct?
Correct.

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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CatSoup (04-19-2012), TheKazpi (04-19-2012)
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