Go Back   Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community > Freshwater > Cichlid Discussion
Click Here to Login

Join Aquarium Advice Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com
 
Old 08-23-2015, 12:37 AM   #1
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Fishperson's Avatar

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 3,358
Alex's Shellie Tank (N. Multifasciatus)

So it finally happened! I planned on getting Multies at the very beginning of the summer, but due to a screw up at the LFS I tried to order them from, and then a series of vacations, I was unable to get them in until the 17th.

This tank was originally planted but I got tired of algae and other problems with the plants, so I decided to switch to something plantless.

The tank is a 20 gallon tall, with aragonite sand, around 30 escargot shells, and some type of rock that's used in saltwater tanks as a centerpiece (base rock was what it was labeled as).

I ordered 8 of them, but 2 were DOA. That left me with 6, what I now know to be 2 males and 4 females, based on their size (males are bigger) and behavior (males fight each other; females occasionally do as well, but not as brutally).

Since I got them, the largest male has claimed almost all of the tank for himself. He allows the other females to stay but is completely intolerant of the smaller male. He eventually chased the smaller male up into the top corner of the tank, and would chase him if he ever came out. Right now the smaller male is in a breeder box with some sand and a few shells, because the large male was going to harass him to death eventually. He seems much better now. I may try to reintroduce him later, but I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it.

But that’s all for the boring stuff. Time for... PICTURES!

Largest male, with his mate, or one of his mates (scandalous ):



Largest male, with his other mate in the background:



Largest male in front of rockwork:



Largest male with his first mate again:



Close up of the big male:



Shot of the whole tank:



Well that's about it. I'm hoping for some fry eventually. That would be cool.

Comments, questions and advice are welcome!

__________________

__________________
~ Alex
20 Gallon Shell Dweller Tank
"Stay fishy my friends."
Fishperson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-23-2015, 12:52 AM   #2
Aquarium Advice Addict
Community Moderator
 
Fresh2o's Avatar



Tank of the Month Award
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 12,863
Great shots of some gorgeous specimens! Nice job.


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________

__________________
I am an ALGAE farmer.
Terms of Service | Community Rules | FresH2O's Planted Tank | Fresh2o's Shrimp Tank
Fresh2o is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-23-2015, 01:35 AM   #3
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Fishperson's Avatar

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 3,358
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fresh2o View Post
Great shots of some gorgeous specimens! Nice job.


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice

Thanks fresh! I've been snooping on your thread, your tank is looking great. Seems you're having more luck with AR mini than I ever did
__________________
~ Alex
20 Gallon Shell Dweller Tank
"Stay fishy my friends."
Fishperson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-23-2015, 12:35 PM   #4
Aquarium Advice Addict

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 3,175
Very nice pics!

Personally I'd suggest more shells; if that's not an option maybe rearrange the shells you currently have. I also kept some floating hornwort in my multi tank for those that ventured to the surface.
__________________
TheresaM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-23-2015, 03:28 PM   #5
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Fishperson's Avatar

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 3,358
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheresaM View Post
Very nice pics!

Personally I'd suggest more shells; if that's not an option maybe rearrange the shells you currently have. I also kept some floating hornwort in my multi tank for those that ventured to the surface.
I do have more shells, I'll throw a few more in I guess. Still, 5 per fish sounds like enough to me.

Floating plants is a great idea! I can't believe I didn't think of that! Seriously!
I mean, having plants was a pain before, but I've been having a bit of a plant relapse recently (I almost bought java ferns at petsmart to put on the rocks, but I thought better of it) so I think I may add some sort of frogbit like red root floaters, or maybe riccia fluitans. There's a relatively calm corner of the tank that would work great with them, and I know that the male in the breeder box, who is pretty shy, would absolutely love some more cover. Thank you!
__________________
~ Alex
20 Gallon Shell Dweller Tank
"Stay fishy my friends."
Fishperson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-23-2015, 03:53 PM   #6
Aquarium Advice Addict

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 3,175
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishperson View Post
I do have more shells, I'll throw a few more in I guess. Still, 5 per fish sounds like enough to me.

Floating plants is a great idea! I can't believe I didn't think of that! Seriously!
I mean, having plants was a pain before, but I've been having a bit of a plant relapse recently (I almost bought java ferns at petsmart to put on the rocks, but I thought better of it) so I think I may add some sort of frogbit like red root floaters, or maybe riccia fluitans. There's a relatively calm corner of the tank that would work great with them, and I know that the male in the breeder box, who is pretty shy, would absolutely love some more cover. Thank you!
Years ago I bred multies, occies, and stapps. Anyhow, when I first got started folks in the local cichlid group told me I could never have enough shells, at least as far as the fish were concerned!

And you're welcome! I know plants aren't typically seen in shellie tanks but it might help plus it does give a nice bit of color.
__________________
TheresaM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2015, 11:51 PM   #7
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Fishperson's Avatar

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 3,358
So I've been thinking about/doing research on 3 problems recently.

1. What sort of floating plants should I add?

I'm pretty settled on frogbit. It grows like a weed but is easy to remove, and has some roots to give a bit more shelter. Red root floaters sound nice but I've heard that they can be difficult to grow. I've actually had frogbit in an unplanted tank before as an experiment and it went pretty well.

2. What to do with the breeder box male.

I've decided to put him in after I find a solution to 1 and 3; I will also shake up the aquarium rock placement a bit and add more shells right before adding him in hopes that in all the confusion peace will be made between the males.

3. What, if any, dither fish can I add?

I would like to see a bit more action in the top half of the tank, so I think I may add 6:
-cherry barbs or
-zebra danios or
-forktail rainbow fish (pseudomugil furcatus)

I'm leaning towards the danios at this point as they are hardy, adaptable, and stay near the top of the tank.
The rainbow fish would be my ideal choice but I fear that I may have issues with lack of plant cover (although the added frogbit may help). I'm also worried that they are rather fragile and hard to care for, or perhaps that their similar coloration may even lead to them being chased by the shellies (although I doubt this). Has anybody kept these that can give input?
Cherry barbs are still a potential option but I fear they may be more midwater swimmers than top dwelling.

Any input is appreciated.
__________________
~ Alex
20 Gallon Shell Dweller Tank
"Stay fishy my friends."
Fishperson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 10:23 AM   #8
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Brookster123's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Mass
Posts: 19,188
Sweet setup man, I'd skip danios, they're non stop and became rather annoying to me, sk3lly took then back the next day. Than again, may need something quick to avoid getting beat on..

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Aquarium Advice mobile app
__________________
I'm not really here... fell in the tank and my phone is just that smart
Brookster123 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 11:56 AM   #9
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Sk3lly's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Windsor. England
Posts: 2,918
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brookster123 View Post
Sweet setup man, I'd skip danios, they're non stop and became rather annoying to me, sk3lly took then back the next day. Than again, may need something quick to avoid getting beat on..

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Aquarium Advice mobile app

I almost took them back the next day but persisted. The danios i got only stayed in the top inch of water and were jumpy at first. Any sudden movements and they used to jump out of my rimless. After a few days they began to swim more midlevel. They are ok fish, always swimming about and playing. They are a nightmare at feeding time, so frantic!


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
Sk3lly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 12:21 PM   #10
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
sinibotia's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Central Maine
Posts: 3,909
Send a message via Skype™ to sinibotia
Multis are so great! Some of my favorite aquarium fish ever since I got mine last fall. Definitely put more shells in if for no other reason than because they'll overrun your tank pretty quickly, their fry practically raise themselves Congrats, beautiful setup!
__________________
No tanks but my MTS is relapsing rapidly...
sinibotia is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 12:46 PM   #11
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Freakgecko91's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Maryland
Posts: 4,399
In this case, you would be adding target fish, not either fish. Basically it would be fish to bring down the aggression level, not being shy fish out of hiding. With that said, multis will typically harass anything you add to an established colony. It took me many months to get my tank to harmonize between multis and other fish (spathodus erythrodon, lophiobagrus cyclurus, synodontis petricola) and was no easy task. The tank has 20 lbs of holey Rock/base rock in it to completely divide the tank into two different zones completely


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
Freakgecko91 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 05:25 PM   #12
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Fishperson's Avatar

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 3,358
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freakgecko91 View Post
In this case, you would be adding target fish, not either fish. Basically it would be fish to bring down the aggression level, not being shy fish out of hiding. With that said, multis will typically harass anything you add to an established colony. It took me many months to get my tank to harmonize between multis and other fish (spathodus erythrodon, lophiobagrus cyclurus, synodontis petricola) and was no easy task. The tank has 20 lbs of holey Rock/base rock in it to completely divide the tank into two different zones completely


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
I didn't really intend for them to be target fish. I wanted more activity at the top of the tank, which might also help coax out the shellies. I was hoping that if i did this soon, and added the floating plants, then maybe in the confusion the smaller male would have a chance to fit in again. If not I would rehome him after.

All the sources I've read said that a few dither fish at the top would help, for example:

"Instead, choose tankmates that are no larger than the shell dwellers themselves. Properly selected, midwater fish act as dither fish, encouraging the cichlids to swim outside their shells. Good choices include small livebearers, wrestling halfbeaks, dwarf rainbowfish, and hardwater-tolerant minnows such as White Cloud Mountain minnows and danios. Note that shell dwellers can be predatory, and will view very small tankmates (such as livebearer fry) as food."
Tropical Fish Finder.co.uk - The ultimate UK fish keeping resource for all types of tropical and marine fish, including fish books, articles, fish shops, fish clubs and more.

I'm mostly looking to see if dwarf neon rainbowfish would be A) suitable, and B) hardy for this type of tank. If not I'll go with the danios, which I know will stay at the surface.
__________________
~ Alex
20 Gallon Shell Dweller Tank
"Stay fishy my friends."
Fishperson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 05:28 PM   #13
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Fishperson's Avatar

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 3,358
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brookster123 View Post
Sweet setup man, I'd skip danios, they're non stop and became rather annoying to me, sk3lly took then back the next day. Than again, may need something quick to avoid getting beat on..

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Aquarium Advice mobile app
Thanks Brookster. I didn't see this before. I had danios once, I kinda liked them. Maybe I'll try cherry barbs instead? Black skirt tetras are also an option.
__________________
~ Alex
20 Gallon Shell Dweller Tank
"Stay fishy my friends."
Fishperson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 05:29 PM   #14
Aquarium Advice FINatic
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Northern New Jersey
Posts: 559
Love your tank . Your male is beautiful!

Sent from my SM-G900P using Aquarium Advice mobile app
__________________
CichlidLady0312 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 05:30 PM   #15
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Fishperson's Avatar

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 3,358
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sk3lly View Post
I almost took them back the next day but persisted. The danios i got only stayed in the top inch of water and were jumpy at first. Any sudden movements and they used to jump out of my rimless. After a few days they began to swim more midlevel. They are ok fish, always swimming about and playing. They are a nightmare at feeding time, so frantic!


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
Hmmm... Frogbit will definitely help then. I have a lid I just don't like it. I'll add it back on if I get them, maybe take it off later.
__________________
~ Alex
20 Gallon Shell Dweller Tank
"Stay fishy my friends."
Fishperson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 05:31 PM   #16
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Fishperson's Avatar

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 3,358
Quote:
Originally Posted by sinibotia View Post
Multis are so great! Some of my favorite aquarium fish ever since I got mine last fall. Definitely put more shells in if for no other reason than because they'll overrun your tank pretty quickly, their fry practically raise themselves Congrats, beautiful setup!
Thanks, and I will. I hope I get fry, that would be so cool.

I'm going to join a local aquarium club, and if I get fry I'll definitely sell some there just to lower the population.
__________________
~ Alex
20 Gallon Shell Dweller Tank
"Stay fishy my friends."
Fishperson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 05:33 PM   #17
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Fishperson's Avatar

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 3,358
Quote:
Originally Posted by CichlidLady0312 View Post
Love your tank . Your male is beautiful!

Sent from my SM-G900P using Aquarium Advice mobile app
Thank you!
__________________
~ Alex
20 Gallon Shell Dweller Tank
"Stay fishy my friends."
Fishperson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 05:41 PM   #18
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Freakgecko91's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Maryland
Posts: 4,399
Alex's Shellie Tank (N. Multifasciatus)

My colony won't let any schoolers in with them. My tank is a very rare set up in that I do have other tanganyikans in with mine, however, that took lots of holey rock, and even then, the other fish rarely swim into the shell territory or in open water really. I'm just warning, multis are mean. Chihuahuas of the cichlids world. All bite but no size. If this was a dofferent species, like ocellatus or brevis, it'd be a different story. If it works for you, congrats, I can just tell you from experience it has not worked for me with schoolers


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
Freakgecko91 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 05:57 PM   #19
Aquarium Advice Addict

POTM Champion
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 3,175
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishperson View Post
I didn't really intend for them to be target fish. I wanted more activity at the top of the tank, which might also help coax out the shellies. I was hoping that if i did this soon, and added the floating plants, then maybe in the confusion the smaller male would have a chance to fit in again. If not I would rehome him after.

All the sources I've read said that a few dither fish at the top would help, for example:

"Instead, choose tankmates that are no larger than the shell dwellers themselves. Properly selected, midwater fish act as dither fish, encouraging the cichlids to swim outside their shells. Good choices include small livebearers, wrestling halfbeaks, dwarf rainbowfish, and hardwater-tolerant minnows such as White Cloud Mountain minnows and danios. Note that shell dwellers can be predatory, and will view very small tankmates (such as livebearer fry) as food."
Tropical Fish Finder.co.uk - The ultimate UK fish keeping resource for all types of tropical and marine fish, including fish books, articles, fish shops, fish clubs and more.

I'm mostly looking to see if dwarf neon rainbowfish would be A) suitable, and B) hardy for this type of tank. If not I'll go with the danios, which I know will stay at the surface.
I have furcatas in a community tank; they tend to be top to mid level dwelling fish. I personally wouldn't put them with with multies but danios, absolutely
__________________
TheresaM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-26-2015, 08:03 PM   #20
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
mikem691's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Chicago
Posts: 4,673
My experience with multi's when I tried to keep top dwelling fish. Multi staying by its shell. Other fish swims near. Multi darts to that fish and removes part of fin. darts back to shell.
Then repeats same behavior. However this was in a 15 so shallow compared to the 20H.
__________________

__________________
mikem691 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
shellie, tan, tank

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
My name is alex and i have a problem.. Brookster123 Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 19 01-12-2014 03:12 PM
Identifying Algae for $200 Alex gjustinmatz Freshwater & Brackish - Planted Tanks 5 10-02-2012 11:33 PM
alex has tank and more for sale reefmaster88 Feedback - Member sales/trades 15 01-07-2006 05:12 PM
Alex's tank clowninround Saltwater Reef Aquaria 3 09-08-2005 12:19 AM







» Photo Contest Winners







All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:34 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.