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Old 09-25-2006, 10:44 PM   #1
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Question about Blood Parrots & Tank Size

I am wanting to get some Blood Parrots, and was wondering what size tank would be appropriate for these fish. I would also like to know what tank mates are good buddies for these guys. Thanks in advance for any help.
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Old 09-26-2006, 10:04 AM   #2
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How many BPs do you want? I keep 2 of them in a 30 gallon long, but I must confess that's a little on the small side. I've been thinking about upgrading to a 45 gallon. You could grow out juveniles in a 29 gallon, but you would need to upgrade to at least a 3 foot tank as they get older. BPs like to be in pairs or small groups, and are more likely to get along with each other if you buy them as juveniles at the same time from the same LFS tank. When buying juveniles, the easiest way to make sure yours are not dyed is to look for gray striped ones. This color is normal for juvies and they will change color to orange as they grow. Stay away from any fish that looks like its color is unnatural (pink, blue, green, purple, etc.), as the dyeing process is cruel and can lead to health problems throughout the fish's life. BPs like to have a lot of caves and other hiding places, and they will hide a lot when you first bring them home, but eventually they won't be so shy. Mine follow me around the tank now and will actually eat out of my hand. There are a lot of fish that make good tank mates for them. Yo yo loaches, barbs, larger tetras, and other cichlids that are similar in temperament tend to work well.

Before you get started, make sure to check out the articles here about the nitrogen cycle, and fishless cycling in case you haven't heard about that. If you have any other questions, ask away!

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Old 09-26-2006, 10:15 AM   #3
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Welcome to AA, Katphish!


~moved to cichlid forum~
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Old 09-26-2006, 01:27 PM   #4
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Old 09-26-2006, 01:34 PM   #5
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I suggest to not put the BP's with any Convict. I have a BP and a convict in the same tank and the convict just picks on the BP all the time. I am thinking about getting rid of the convict and giving it to my nephew. Just an FYI

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Old 09-26-2006, 03:15 PM   #6
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My BPs live with a convict and there are never any problems. It can work out fine IMO as long as the convict is smaller when it is added (my BPs are much larger than my convict), plus mine is a female, so that may have something to do with it. However, I wouldn't even try keeping BPs with a pair of cons. As always, YMMV, as cichlids have very different personalities from one fish to the next. 8) Severums may work (except in my case ), or maybe a blue acara, or firemouth (again, except mine! ). Cichlids can be risky though, so dithers are a safer bet!
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Old 09-26-2006, 06:47 PM   #7
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alot of people dont condone blood parrots, as they are a cross-bred of red devils and severums. the often have spinal problems, as well as an abnormally small mouth they may not be able to close
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Old 09-26-2006, 07:05 PM   #8
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I read too somewhere that they can't close their mouths, but I have a 6-7" BP and believe me, it can bite if it wants to. Mine has actually made me bleed a few times while I clean the tank (really minor bites...they have small teeth). He's fairly aggressive too...he picked on my blue gourami and it died of stress.

I have him with an angelfish, two clown loaches, and a bala shark in a 55 gal (I'm going to upgrade to a 123 gal wide tank because the clowns are getting big). Blood parrots shouldn't have many problems as far as tankmates, just don't keep them with big, highly aggressive fish, but don't keep them with really delicate fish either. Tetras (bigger ones, they can inhale neons and other small ones), loaches, and other dither fish will work well with them.

Also, they will eat almost anything. Mine has eaten guppies, frozen foods (like brine shrimp, blood worms, etc.), flakes, and pellets. He's even eaten an algae wafer before. When I kept zebra danios in there, he somehow ate them all...I thought they would be too fast for him to get.

They have alot of personality too, like almost every cichlid. Mine comes to the front of the tank to greet me whenever I walk past the aquarium. And don't feed them, no matter how hungry they look.

Anyways, good luck if you decide to get one!
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Old 09-26-2006, 07:16 PM   #9
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The parentage of BPs is still debated as far as I know. Red devil/severum is a possibility. Mine can't close their mouths, and they of course have the obvious spinal deformity, but they eat and swim with no problems, and actually take a larger share of the food than my convict. I hear it is possible for BPs to have swim bladder problems; however, I have never seen this in a BP myself.

I know a lot of people find hybrid fish unethical, and I see their point of view regarding African cichlids, since many species will readily breed with one another and pollute genepools of species which may be endangered outside of the aquarium trade. The same is not true for BPs. As I understand it, 99.9% of male BPs are sterile, so chances of a successful spawn are extremely slim.

IMO there is nothing wrong with owning a parrot; they are extremely personable and fun to keep. Go for it if you really want one, just make sure you provide it with enough tank space. 8)
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Old 10-04-2006, 01:51 PM   #10
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this looks a little old but im gonna post anyways lol. We have a parrot in with barbs, a silver dollar, clown loach, danios, and a knife fish, and they get along beautifully. In addition, I have a big blood parrot in with 10 various cichlids, including a cobalt and a yellow lab. They get along well. The last two parrots are in with our arowana, and they dont bother eachother at all. The arowana is about 10 inches large now.
forgot, but ours are in a 25, a 55, and a 20.
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