Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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iamntbatman 11-26-2008 02:19 AM

New Jewel Cichlid
So after a bit of a tank emergency last week (random bacterial bloom resulted in oxygen depletion that killed my last little dwarf puffer and one of my tiger barbs) I decided to restock the tank. This is a 20g tank with a Penguin and an air-driven UGF that formerly housed six tiger barbs, one dwarf puffer and a clown pleco, along with a moss ball, various rock caves, some driftwood, tons of java fern and some water lettuce. I went to the store with the intent to purchase one or two green tiger barbs to get the school size back up but their barbs were too tiny to risk. I was also throwing around the idea of the puffers, and decided that it'd be pretty risky (I think my last puffers may have been just super docile) plus I just wanted to try something new.

So, I figured since I'm miles from a biotope anyway (the pleco being from South America and the barbs from Asia) I might as well go with the theme and get something from a completely different continent, so I picked up a jewel cichlid. From the pictures I've seen I believe I have a male. He's between 2.5" and 3". He's been cruising around the tank eating the pond snails the puffer couldn't manage before dying. One of the barbs took a nip at his tail and he chased the whole pack off, so now they generally ignore each other. He's eating well and isn't shy about eating when the barbs are in their feeding frenzy. I realize that he may become aggressive enough that I have to return him.

So the usual question: anyone have one of these, and have any suggestions for keeping them? The water has a pH of about 7.2 and that tank is kept at around 80 degrees. The tank's been up and running for just shy of a year now. Also, sometime down the road I may be interested in breeding them. Is it completely out of question to introduce a mature female to this male, or would it end up in a blood bath?

daisycutter 11-26-2008 04:21 PM

ive never kept them as from what i hear a breeding pair will take out every other living thing in the tank there pretty hardy fish and do have some brillant coloration

iamntbatman 12-15-2008 01:44 PM

Well, Teddy Roosevelt (the girlfriend named him) has turned out to be a real jerk, but I like him so he's staying. He HATES the tiger barbs. He'll just be cruising around peacefully, pecking at the driftwood, rocks and substrate, then for no apparent reason just lunge at the barb school and send them running. No injuries are being sustained, and I kind of like how he keeps the barbs schooling together. They've also stopped bickering among themselves, but that could also be because I added an albino tiger and a green tiger to their school. He also dislikes the clown pleco (when he can find it) but he just stares at it rather than attack it or anything.

One day, I might move the barbs and pleco to another tank and try getting him a lady friend and see if I can get them to spawn.

Twistersmom 12-15-2008 03:32 PM

I kept two Jewels for a short time. Believe they would have turned out to be a maiting pair. Moving your Barbs may be a good idea! My two Jewels formed a pack, always chasing and nippen at my tiger babs, and this was in a 65 gal. The tiger where not safe anywhere! Read they are easy to breed, but may have to buy a few and let them pair off.

What does a super moderator do?

iamntbatman 12-17-2008 12:50 AM

He doesn't seem to actually want to kill them or anything - he just chases them off. He'll just swim straight for the middle of the pack of barbs and they'll all disperse then regroup on the other side of the tank. He doesn't do it constantly - just once in a while. I haven't seen him actually nip at any of the barbs yet. I've had the barbs for a while though, and have grown quite attached to them, so if anyone's going it'll be TR.

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