Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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steveysquish 04-07-2014 01:53 PM

Reasonably good cichlid mix?
Iv given up being to particular with what african cichlids can mix together so this is what im going to put together wether i get frowned upon or not as iv waited and fussed around to long to wait anymore (iv been patient) lol....

electric yellow labs

electric blue labs

and maybe a red tail shark?

i have built up rocks and ledges,plants,ceramic pots ect for territory and hide aways so would a syno catfish or a striped rafael catfish be ok as id like a bottom feeder or something very similar to eat any food waste and or algae..cheers people.

Agent13 04-07-2014 02:10 PM

Reasonably good cichlid mix?
Do you know the scientific name of the "electric blue lab" you're talking about ? I ask because I'm uncertain that's actually a fish . I know if the electric blues .. The hap ones .. Or do you mean a blue morph of the yellow labs ? Perhaps the white lab they actually usually have a blue sheen ? There is the pseudotropheus socolofi .. Which looks very much like a blue "yellow" lab..

A bottom feeder isn't really necessary for practical reasons in such a tank . These fish fight for all scraps if food and they themselves scrape the tank looking for algae . I myself have a featherfin cat in my African tank ... But for looks alone . I know he's only adding to the bio load .

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steveysquish 04-07-2014 02:19 PM

think the name is Labidochromis caeruleus for the yellow labss...and the electric blue is called Sciaenochromis fryeri i beleive? yea i have read that bottom feeders ect just add to the bio load as they produce alot of crap...did want one for looks ect..but probs wont need one if i do a weekly water change...i just send you a question on your profile if you get time to read it...please thank you.

Cichlidsrule102 04-07-2014 04:49 PM

Yeah you should be doing weekly water canoes regardless of whether you have a bottom feeder or not. The only thing that I'd be worried about is that the africans will most likely eat all the food before it hits the bottom and the red tailed shark wont get any food. Only saying because I've had that happen with my white knight eating all the food before my altolamprologus calvus got any.

Cichlidsrule102 04-07-2014 04:57 PM

And btw the yellow labs are mbuna and are usually hyper aggressive even by african cichlid standards and also their diet needs to be at least 75% vegetable matter, e.g. algae wafers, zucchini, peas, maybe some dried seaweed. I think by electric blue lab u mean electric blue peacock? they are the most commonly encountered in the hobby, and they are reasonably peaceful compared to the yellow labs, but need a mainly carnivorous diet. I'm not sure how you are going to make sure the yellows get a herbivorous diet while the blues get a carnivorous one though? But in a large enough tank anything is possible mate, cheers

Agent13 04-07-2014 05:42 PM

Ahh yes... That's the electric blue hap I suspected . That is in fact a carnivore fish but its a really pretty fish . Mixing it with mbuna is possible because it can handle the boisterous mbuna but you'll need to try to target feed it. I have one happily living with my mbuna ... He's happy in there . A really nice addition and I do somewhat target feed him. I'm not a rule follower .. So don't worry about me trying to discourage "frowned upon" stocking as long as I feel it's possible to do without stressing a fish beyond reason .
A good diet would be NLS cichlid pellets as that will likely not cause blist even if the yellow labs eat it a bit. Then add zucchini and something like repashy super green for your mbuna. There are other herbivore diets you can rotate in from time to time but I've found all around that to work really well with my stocking. Personally I feel the yellow labs are easiest to mesh into a mixed group like that . They aren't overly aggressive like the metriaclima or such are . I can't say for the shark... That's the only fish I put a question mark by.

Now onto the water chemistry . If you really are set on African you'll need to do a wee bit of chemistry with your water . Your PH KH and GH are all really low for them to thrive . Perfect for South American cichlids but very low for rift lakes . To keep it simple I'd say mix equal parts marine salt and aquarium salt to your tank...(if you want you can add a little epsom salt as well for your GH) . You want to add a really low dose especially at first . Your not trying to make a marine setup .. But you do want to add enough to help replicate the lakes. . . Keep track of how much you add and remember with water changes you need to replace the amount you took out to keep it consistent . I hope I simplified it enough to not make it daunting .

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Cichlidsrule102 04-07-2014 09:59 PM

here here

steveysquish 04-08-2014 06:52 AM

cheers guys thats great,going to read over your threads to myself to absorb it in then put it in to practice,,im definatly going to get some mixed dietry foods together for their needs...i was just going to put in a small amount of two different foods eg pea and wafer one week then the week after put in two different types of food and just constantly mix each week around but il sort freind used to have these pellet stick or something and they eat out of his fingers while he held it lol..and as to the mix of cichlid im not going to put any together if they will kill,bully,stress one another out all the time as it wont be fair and they will become stationary and not natural,but i dont mind if they have ago once in a while as it replicates their natural personality and habitat..aslong as they agree to disagree thats cool...i cant afford to buy salt at the moment depending on price here in the uk,but could i cut my water changes down a little to raise the ph kh and gh them then potentialy add the salt when i can buy it? if not my mate dosent know it yet but he will be lending me money for salt until end of the month payday lol.

p.s ill be writing down how much salt i add ect everytime i do it and take test reading to keep it balanced adding less or more time to time....and iv marked a line on the side of my tank to indicate where my 20% water level change is :)

Agent13 04-08-2014 09:31 AM

They're messy fish ... You might want to consider 50% water changes instead of 20%. Also make sure you get very good filtration and keep in mind they do like a current ...

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steveysquish 04-08-2014 02:23 PM

oki doki

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