View Full Version : Questions baout my new tank.

12-07-2002, 11:31 PM
well, i'm a newbie to the cichlid world atm. i had fish since i was 7(now 18) but they were tropical and sucked ass. anywyas, about a month ago i wanted to set up a tank, and decided on cichlids. this is myt current set-up atm.

tank: 60 gallon
gravel: small black gravel
filter: penguin 330

fish: 2 green severums(1 in), 1 buttercuffri(3/4 in), 1 pleco(2 in), 1 bricharri(i think thats how ya spell it, 1 in), 2 texas cichlids(1in), 2 kenya(1 in), 1 albino cory(3/4 in), one spotted cory(1.5 in), 1 eal looking sob(not an eal, forgot his name, 3.5 in), 1 electric blue(1.5 in), and 2 others that i cannot identify either.

one is hack a black body, white stripes(not clear stripes) going up and down its body, and very very light bluw spots, mostly on its all black head.

the second is a neaon blue african cichlid, hes jsut diff shades of blue all over, and a light blue(not yellow) dot on his anal fin.

first, can anyone help me first identify my 2 un-knowns?

should i switch filters, if so, to what kind and brand, and size, etc, etc.?

when do electic blues start to colorize? i was told around 2.5 in., is that so?

do the green severums colorize at 5 in?

my texas cichlids are becoming more and more agressive, especially to my coorys, i used to have 4 albinos, only one is left now(one died this morning).

is it good to keep them a little hungry? if so, whats the reason behind this?

any suggestions on my tank set-up will be appritiated, any fish recommendations would also be great, but i wont out nothing over 1.5 inches in the tank atm.

so, who wants to take a crap shot at all these?:)

Neil N
12-08-2002, 07:03 AM
all i can say is each to their own, i my opinion, this is asking for trouble, have you done any research before you bought these fish?, did the shop offer you any advice?.

just taking the butty on its own, do you realise how big and mean these fish get, full size it could probably inhale all the rest of its tankmates, never mind eat them.

i dont want to discorage you from keeping fish, its the best hobby in the world, but please please please buy a good book, and read it, decide what you like the best, will fit you set-up etc and take the rest of the fish back to the store.

once again it i sound rude i really dont mean to be, all the best and i hope you dont lose any fish while you decide what you're going to do!

12-08-2002, 10:22 AM
Well said Neil.

Stick around and ask questions. We will help you figure this whole cichlid thing out.

12-08-2002, 03:08 PM
i know how big and evil that thing gets:) but atm its the fish everyone pics on in the tank. as soon as it starts to dominate, i'm planning on trading it in.

Rex Karr
12-09-2002, 05:41 PM
Yeah, you will definantly have trouble with the Buttikoferi if it stays with the rest. But as long as you take it back before there's trouble it should be ok.

But there are still some serious problems aside from the Buttikoferi.

Half of your fish are hard water Africans, and the other half are neutral/soft water Americans. And you really can't mix the two and expect them to do well.

If you keep the Africans (Electric Blue, Kenyii, Brichardi) you will be able to add more, and shouldn't have to many problems.

If you keep the Americans (Severum, Texas), you may have trouble with the Texas cichlids killing each other, and the Severums, because they can be quite aggressive.


12-09-2002, 08:48 PM
i got a couple banga yellows yesterday too:)

anywyas, i was told by some very good sources, that i could mix africans with americans as long as the mixture isnt really heavy. For example, having a mostly African tank with a couple americans in there, or vise versa. so right now i got a mostly african with 4 americans in there. would that be alright?

Rex Karr
12-09-2002, 10:09 PM
I'm not sure who or what you good sources are, but they either didn't explain what they were trying to say very well, or they aren't very good sources. Was it from a Pet Shop or LFS? If so, be wary of advise given by most of them. A lot of LFS's will say stuff just to sell fish. Not all but some. I've heard workers say that a Pacu is a type of Oscar and only reach 8-10". Yeah right, they're pretty much a jumbo vegatarian pirahna.

In some cases it is ok to mix a few Africans in with Americans or vise versa. But you have to be real careful. If your going to mix Americans in with Africans make sure the Americans can handle hard water well and can handle the lifestyle of African cichlids. If your mixing a few Africans in with Americans, make sure they can handle the water and the lifestyle.

If your tank s mainly consumed with Africans, Severums will be a bad choice. The severums prefer still, soft, low pH water. While most rift lake Africans prefer some current, and need hard, high pH water. So the Severums should be taken back.

The Texas cichlids will be more suited to an African tank, as they can be found in hard water and are more active than Severums. But they are also much larger (12" possibly) and much more aggressive. They may make a meal out of some of the Africans. Plus the Texas cichlids will fight among themselves, and they may kill each other.


Oh, and whats a banga yellow? Got another common name or scientific name?

12-10-2002, 12:28 AM
well, one of my sources was a co-worker of mine. he's had cichlids for 3 years now. the other was my local petstore thats i've been going to since i was 7:) (18 now). but ive seen the store owners own tank, and hes got pretty much the same set-up, except he only has one texas, one jack dempsey, and 1 gold severum. He told me almsot the same thing that you recommended:) i guess i jsut didnt word it right. but he said as long as i have more africans for the texas' to chase, they'll have a harder time beating-up on jsut one and will jsut chase the others around.(or something like that:)) lol.

but i guess i'm going to take the severums back. or put'em in a 10 gallon. can 2 severums live in a 10gallon?

theres another name for the banga yellows, starts with a V(sorry, not too good with the names yet) something like Ven...something

Rex Karr
12-10-2002, 06:11 AM
Severums get about 8-10" so a 10g isn't big enough for sure.

Banga Yellow= Venustus?

A brown, yellow, and white fish with a checkerboard pattern. Males get a blue head.

12-10-2002, 10:05 AM
yuup, those are the ones i got:) males colorize and females don't?

Neil N
12-10-2002, 01:26 PM
I Guess a good way to look at this whole situation would be:-

Just because somethind can be done (i'm still not convinced), it doesent necessarly mean you should do it.

What you are doing in effect is puting a creature which relies completely on you, into a totally alien environment, nature has evolved these creatures over millions of years to be perfectly adapted to their own specific environment.

In the wild the fish could NEVER meet,

Africans are great SA/CA Americans are great, wht do you feel the need to mix them.

Why not choose one type, or if you can get a second tank and have some fun creating biotopes and watch these amazing creature thrive in a natural environment.

We have a RESPONSIBILITY to care for our charges the best we can

Only you can decide what to do, again i dont mean to sound harsh, do what you feel is right.

Best of luck, please dont be afraid to ask, never rely on one opinion, remember a litttle knowledge is a VERY dangerous thing alway gather all the facts


12-10-2002, 08:03 PM
When you get down to it, you could mix almost any fish if the tank is big enough. Unfortunately, 60g isn't big enough.

Young Venustus all look the same, male and female. The males will get more colorful eventually. They'll also get very large and predatory.

12-21-2002, 02:11 AM
i have a quick question, i have two gold severums and one is hella picking on the other, from what i have read so far, i should either a) separate them or b) put more fish in? i also, have a dwarf puffer and two green chromides, all in a 20 gal tank. all these guys are like 1"-1.4" so what should i do?

12-21-2002, 09:15 AM
All of the fish you mentioned are in a single 20g tank? I'd get rid of the severum and the green chromides, or at least get a bigger tank for each of them to be housed seperately. The green chromides get pretty good sized and they're brackish fish like puffers. They'll live in freshwater, but from what I've read they'll need more salt in the water as they get larger (8+ inches). That's marine salt like you'd use in a reef tank, not aquarium salt like the kind used for treating ich or stress.

For now, I'd definitly seperate the severums, just because the victim doesn't really have enough room to get away from the bully.

You really should start a new topic on this. It'll get quicker results usually and you'll get more replies. We're all friendly here. :wink: