Must African cichlids be kept only with African cichlids?
It seems some folks on this forum have cichlids within a community? Or are things starting to blur together for me? :roll:
Mostly yes. But some people do mix them its a hit and miss game haha. You could mix new world and old workd and do they will all get together. Sometimes they wont.
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Some of the very calmer ones can be kept in community tanks although it is really not advised.
Cichlids can still exhibit aggression which by cichlid standards is nothing but like WW3 to other fish.
I would strongly advise you not to mix them with anything other than cichlids unless they are fry or very very young.
the most popular matchup ive seen are yellow labs in with other "community" fish even yet they still are Africans and can easily become the aggressor of the tank.
I've kept the less aggressive cichlids in community since I started the hobby. However I have learned that African and South American cichlids don't mix (never try that LOL). And you have to have a very large tank to keep more than a pair of cichlids, even if they are dwarfs.
One of the more passive cichlids(yellow labs) yes. more aggressive cichlids like kenyis ,no.
I have an Oscar (about 3 or 3 1/2 " in size living with an Orange Blotch Zebra and an Electric Blue Johanni. There appears to be mutual respect in the tank -- definitely with the Johanni and the Oscar as the Johanni is both similar in size (probably 2 1/2 to 3"), and definitely as or even more mean than the Oscar. The Blotch Zebra is a little skiddish around the Oscar, probably because he's not as big as the Johanni and therefore the Oscar is starting to dwarf him in size, but he often follows the Oscar around almost like his little sidekick.
The 3 of them (two Africans and 1 South American) co-exist nicely.
African's in general (my view) prefer hard alkaline water while the South American ,Central American cichlid's, prefer softer more acidic condition's.
Is difference in diet's as well.While the larger South American's,Central American's,need a fair bit of animal protein's to develop to adulthood,,the African's are more herbivorous, and easily become bloated,sickly,with too much animal protein's and not enough vegetable,algae,based food's.
No one tell's the poor African's that too much meaty food is not good for them, and they will happily eat all they can and as mentioned,,become bloated.
Don't think the African's can easily digest the meaty food's as easily as their larger cousin's.
Short answer is no! They can't mix with others then Africans. But more the queastion is what tank size, water perams, and specific fish do you want to mix?
Africans are not just aggressive they need different water perams to thrive and even African with african is a chess game. More specifics will help a more complete comprehensive answer.
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