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Discussion Starter #1
Id like to have a Cichilid tank further on down the line, and id like to get all my facts straight before i start!
Im thinking i will get a 75 gallon tank, or possibly a 55 for smaller species and either a pair, or a small group of fish. Depending on the temperament, ill have appropriate tank mates. If not, im perfectly okay with just a species tank. =]

So, from looking at our profiles of Cichilids, these are the fish im considering.
Electric Yellow Cichilid
Needs a 55 gallon for a pair and some community fish. Not really that aggressive, gets to four inches, mostly vegitarian. They like the temp 75-82, ph 8, and im not sure the hardness/softness.

Firemouth
Needs 55 gallons for a pair or two, species only tank. Kind of aggressive, males larger than females, 5-6/4-5 inches, needs algea to feed on, plus other veg food. Temp should be 72-80, ph 6.5-8, and im not sure about hardness.

Jewel Cichilid
Needs a 55 gallon for a pair and some community fish. They get to 6 inches, and eat almost anything as a bottom feeder. They like the temp 70-80, the ph 6.5-7.5, and the softness im not sure.

Kribensis
Needs a 20 gallon for a pair, not sure how many would be able to go in a 55 or a 75, or their size. They can also have community fish. They are omnivores, and can be aggressive near breeding. They prefer 72-82 degrees, a ph of 7.

Bolivian Ram
A 20 gallon is needed for a single fish, a 40 gal for a pair, and 55 plus for more than three, and community. They are omnivores that eat from the gravel, males getting bigger, 3.5/3.5 inches. They like 76-80 degrees, a ph of 7.8, and im not sure of hardness/softness.

Cockatoo Dwarf
They need 20 gallons for a male and three females, 55 gallons for two males and six females. They may have community fish. They eat live foods, and some vegetation, and males get larger, 3.5/2.5 inches. They like 75-81 degrees, a ph of 7-7.6, and really soft water.


Anyone have ideas, suggestions, advice?
 

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I have firemouths in my 75 ,and I love them! Here is what I have with them:

3 firemouths (1 will get sold back to the lfs after they pair)
2 key holes
A school of rainbows(mix of "australian" ,and blue rainbows)
A school of Red Phantom Tetra( I think 7 in both schools)
5 Pictus Catfish
4 sword tails
The tank has alot of plants.

My tank is going very well ,and its been set up for a few months with no real problems so fair except I had 4 firemouths ,but one of them was killed by the other 3 since it started smaller ,and never caught up. I do pretty decent sized water changes weekly since my tank might be a little over stocked.
 

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Before offering any suggestions on stocking, we would need to know your tap water pH, General Hardness and KH (Calcium Hardness). These will help determine what you can stock in your tank without having to change the water parameters which is difficult to control.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I am not sure about my KH or GH, the water people wont get back to me. I will be buying a text for that, after the second, when i get paid.
My dad got the water tested when they moved in thirty years ago, and about two years ago, and the tests say the water is hard.
My tap ph is about 7.8 but goes down to 6.5 in the tank itself....
 

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Buy an API Master kit along with the GH and KH tests, it will be invaluable to you.

Once you know for certain the numbers then we can offer suggestions on stocking.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I do have a API Master Kit,[its great!] and wouldve already bought the other test if i had thought the water people were going to be so difficult!

Though, do you know the hardness/softness requirements for the fish ive mentioned?
 

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In the order you posted them

Hard
Soft to Medium
Soft to Medium
Soft
Soft to Medium
Soft
 

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My tank is hard ,and the fish I listed do well in harder water. I would rule out the ram ,and cockatoo since they both like softer water.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Actually, I have soft water!

Bought the test today, and found out i have soft water.
Here are the params for my tank.
PH: 6.4-6.8
GH: 71.6/four drops
KH: 17.9/one drop

And since i had to scrap my stocking plans for my current tank, I may just be doing the cichlid tank now!
 

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Huzzah for soft water! Now you're in trouble, cuz' nearly ALL the fishies you want (aside from the guppies) were soft water lovers! Can't wait to see where you end up with all of this.

P.S. I am in love with Bolivian Rams. 'Course they're the only cichlids I've ever had, but they're WONDERFUL! ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I am really thinking of bolivian rams...They need a harem correct? Or a chosen pair?

And im going to keep my guppies, since they are locally bred, and have shown no signs of distress. Plus TBH, im really attached to them, and if they show signs, i will return them, but short of sudden deaths, theyll be going in my 45.

What cichilids can i put in with them? are there any?
 

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Most dwarf cichlids will leave guppies alone from what I understand. Since the tank is 75 gallons you can have so many fish if your going with guppy sized fish. Do you plan on useing live plants because dwarfs look so good in planted tanks it would be a waste if you did't :D .
 

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Discussion Starter #13
It's actually a 45, and yes I will be planting it with live plants. I just have to find someone on Craigslist with a light fixture who won't flake out on me! Two guys already have. =\
I already have some java moss and water sprite though. I can't wait to start planting. =]
 

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Apistogramma agassizii would work with those fish.

It does well in a well planted tank but can be known to eat plants if not fed quite regularly (twice a day)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
So, I've decided on a Bolivian ram, my 9 guppies, a group of 10-12 cories and two groups of tetra.
The tetras I'm considering are:
Rummy nose
Cardinal
Ember
Lemon
Flame
Rosy
And if I can find them, harlequin rasbora.

The tetra groups will have nine fish, and hopefully I'll be able to add three more to those groups after I've begun to really plant my tank.

Anyone have tidbits of info on these tetra? Or the rasbora?
 
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