Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   Can anyone tell me about cichlids? (

Dispatch273 08-07-2011 09:28 AM

Can anyone tell me about cichlids?
And specifically which ones might do well in my tank? I have a 55 gallon lightly planted tank that has a few rock hideouts and one piece of driftwood. Right now for stock I have 2 gouramis, 1 peacock eel, and one pleco. There are also a few guppy fry but I'm not too concerned about them getting eaten, either they do or they don't Are there any colorful cichlids that I could keep in my tank? Any other suggestions for non-cichlid fish that are colorful? I really love the look of the electric blue JD but I don't think they could go in my tank lol. Thanks in advance!

Byron 08-07-2011 12:19 PM

What are your water parameters (hardness and pH)? Different cichlids occur in different water and some have specific needs.

A Jack Dempsey is not a good fish for a planted tank, and attaining 10 inches it needs a lot of space. We have fish profiles, second tab from the left in the blue bar across the top of the page; in posts if the name is used the same it will shade (as it did here) and you can click the name for that profile.

Welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum.


Dispatch273 08-07-2011 08:35 PM

Thank you Byron! My water parameters are as follows

pH is 7.5 and my GH is 60ppm no ammonia or nitrites/nitrates. This is after a 50% water change today. How big of a tank does a JD need? Thank you for answering my questions :-)

ElectricBlueJackDempsey 08-07-2011 10:50 PM

55 minimum for 1 preferably bigger

Dispatch273 08-08-2011 06:08 AM


Originally Posted by ElectricBlueJackDempsey (Post 772154)
55 minimum for 1 preferably bigger

Thanks! Looks like I'll be waiting a while to get one then...I have a 55 gallon but If that's the minimum I'd rather wait till I could give him something bigger....

Byron 08-08-2011 09:24 AM

Agree, at least a 4-foot tank. And remember, that is for one JD alone, nothing else. A pair in a 90g would spawn. Not a "nice" fish temperamentally, as mentined in the profile. And speaking of profile, I see it does not contain the minimum tank size, this profile needs updating [my "next" task I guess].

To your original question on suitable fish, with those water parameters you have a wide range. My first suggestion is to consider what type of tank you'd like, thinking here of a "theme." It is always easier to combine fish that have similar/identical needs in terms of water movement (type of filter dictates this), parameters obviously, environment (plants, wood, rock, etc); with similar needs, the fish are more likely to be settled and that means healthier. A stream habitat, a flooded forest habitat, a lake habitat, a faster-flowing river with gravel and rocks habitat, a swamp/pond habitat. Suitable fish for each of these will share certain traits. Fish from flowing rivers tend to be more active swimmers, so danio, barbs, catfish. Lake fish tend to be quieter, maybe your smaller dwarf cichlids, rasbora, some catfish, characins. This suits a stream or flooded forest too. The "habit theme" would dictate the decor, lots of wood for instance laying down suggests a gentle stream, or standing a flooded forest. Very thick plants replicate a flooded forest, swamp or pond; more sparse plants with more substrate visible a stream/river. And so on.

Once I decide on the habitat, I research fish looking for suitable ones that occur in such an environment. This is mentioned in our profile of each species. With a 55g, you can have a lovely stream, river, flooded forest or lake habitat.

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