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Old 07-29-2016, 09:03 AM   #1
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mixing continents

ok, so I've been reading some stuff.
most of what I've read seems like it was set in stone so far back that no one really knows why it was that way in the first place.
so let's talk about mixing Cichlids from the new world and Africa.

probably the most common objection is the water conditions argument, but I have to ask, since most places keep these in tanks with water that runs through all of the tanks. every fish store I've been in admits that this is so. many will tell you that the suppliers breed and keep them in much the same way. so, is it really necessary to keep African Cichlids in ph 9 water, and is it even safe to do this. you wouldn't shock a fish with a huge temperature change, is it safe or wise to shock them with highly alkaline water?
so, what happens to a fish like an African cichlid, that has been raised in neutral ph water, to be kept in neutral ph water. I mean, what will happen? I had an electric yellow years ago that I kept in a community tank for years, and never noticed any signs that he was uncomfortable.

the next objection is the river vs. lake argument. it says, these fish come from vastly different environments, and therefor can't be put together. this also seems like a moot point when so many fish are bred and raised in captivity. it's like saying you cant have a cat and dog, because they come from different environments in the wild. yeah, well that's not really true anymore. are we attributing things to these fish that they aren't really capable of being concerned with?

the last and most dogmatic argument is that they come from different places and therefore shouldn't be mixed. again, kinda like saying you can't have roses and tulips in your garden because they don't grow together in the wild. well I'm sorry, my tank isn't the wild, it's a very artificial environment with plastic plants rocks I found in my back yard.

I'm wanting a tank where I can find fish I like to look at, and I want some color variety and shape variety.

as long as I keep aggression levels comparable, will there really be any problems?

I'm seriously looking for well reasoned answers and advice on this. not just the typical, "because I said so" reasoning.
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Old 07-29-2016, 08:14 PM   #2
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Well, it looks like you answered most, if not all of your questions. The next thing to do is to go ahead and try it, I think you'd be able to pull it off. I haven't done it, I keep the Africans separate from the new world cichlids but if I were to mix them, I'd have mostly Africans and the rest new world. Tank bred many times over, I don't think it matters river or lake fish and what would matter most is compatibility and their behavior among themselves, competing for food and keeping a close watch.
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Old 07-29-2016, 10:54 PM   #3
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You should consider temperament. From what I have read New World cichlids(oscars, terrors, ect) are generally way more aggressive than Africans. Though you bring up good reasoning and yeah you kind of answered your own questions.
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Old 07-30-2016, 08:20 AM   #4
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I would just like to mention that I have a very large Green Severum and a Convict in my 75gal with lots of Mbuna and Peacocks.
The tank has been running successfully for over 2 years with no problems, fights, or deaths.
I am not trying to suggest that what I am doing is a "good" idea, but it is working for me.
Those two fish are left over from when I had it as a New World tank.
The Severum is about 9 or 10 years old.
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Old 07-30-2016, 09:47 AM   #5
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here's where I'm at. I've been rethinking the green terrors, they will eventually get too big anyway, so my lfs is going to trade me for 3 firemouths, or I suppose I could even get something else. so they're out of the picture. that leaces some convicts, the firemouths, and a couple Salvini. the Salvini may pose the next problem.
what I had been looking at were ELectric yellows, and Acei. peacocks would be nice, but I'm not sure, I've never had Africans.
so, now that no one has said no way, it can't be done, I'm looking for suggestions.
here's what I really want to have, as far as New World goes. I want the Firemouths, and I eventually want some severum. I'd like to keep a few of the convicts, but probably not all seven I have presently.
as for the Africans, I need something that can handle that aggression level, but won't exceed it. if the Salvini are a real problem, then I can do something with them. I really like them, but realize they can be bed tempered. it's the concession to go with a few colorful Africans that is making me willing to let go of some of my other likes.
so, 100 gallons, 60x18x24. convicts, firemouths, salvini, (and a pair of Mollies )
adding a pair maybe or red shouldered Severum in the future. what can I go with?
also important, nothing on my list except the severums will exceed 6 or so inches, so no giants. I thought about frontosa, but they get too big.
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