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Old 08-01-2014, 12:06 AM   #1
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So.....what are my options if I stock my tank with African Cichlids?

Ok so I'm somewhat new to the aquarium lifestyle, I've had tanks before but they were already stocked and given to me. I aquired a 75 gallon tank and I originally planned on going with an Oscar and a few various cichlids. I am embarrassed to say this but I didn't know the difference between Africans and South Americans as far as which particular Cichlid belongs to which species, I bought gravel for my new tank and I was persuaded into buying gravel specifically for African Cichlids, supposedly helps slightly raise the pH level to a level that African Cichlids are acclimated.
Anyways I was at the time unaware that Oscars are part of the South American family and I really shouldn't have bought the gravel if I was planning on buying an Oscar. So I'm thinking I'll just stock Africans instead, so my question is this; if I decide to go with African Cichlids, what else can I add that will coexist with minimal conflict? I appreciate any help I get, I'm still a noob lol.
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Old 08-01-2014, 01:44 AM   #2
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A 75 would barely be big enough for an oscar alone when it's fully grown. Africans suitable for a 75 would be mostly peacocks or mbuna from Malawi if you want colorful fish. Here's a link that you should find useful: Aquarium Quick Reference Resources - Cichlid Keeping
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Old 08-01-2014, 01:58 AM   #3
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I appreciate the heads up. I know Oscars can sometimes get huge, up to 12 inches or more, just assumed that they only grow as big as their environment. I do think that I will forget about getting an Oscar and mainly stick to African Cichlids as that seems to be my best option.
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Old 08-01-2014, 02:04 AM   #4
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It's really experimental when doing mixed species, that's why I do single species only tanks...but I can suggest some peaceful cichlids that may co-exist.

1.) Lethrinops "Red Cap" Chirwa (peaceful w/other species, aggressive towards it's own kind)


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2.)Otopharynx Lithobates Yellow Blaze

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3.) Auloncara Dragonblood
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Maybe you can research these, and see if you like them.

....these are just a few that may work due to their peaceful nature.
Keep in mind that w/Africans overstocking and providing plenty of hiding places can reduce aggression if you chose some species tougher than these here. You should decorate w/rock b/c they feel more comfortable around them. Also if you mix, try to add species that don't look alike or have the same colors....

*Hope this helps*



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Old 08-01-2014, 08:54 AM   #5
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That's very useful, thank you!! I'll read up on all them, only problem is I'm not sure there's a store around here that stocks any of those, we only have like 1 or 2 aquatic stores around here (other than Petco).I've always heard mixed comments about buying from Petco, but when I've been in there I've seen multiple dead fish so that kinda deters me from wanting to buy fish from them. I'll buy accessories and decor from them but I'm not so sure about their fish.
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Old 08-01-2014, 09:36 AM   #6
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So.....what are my options if I stock my tank with African Cichlids?

Pet Stores are the Devil!


I pretty much shop online to get fish so exclusive, they deliver right to your door and it gets there overnight healthy and alive...I usually order from Dave's Rare Aquarium or Live Fish Direct. There are others like Cichlids are Special or KG Tropicals which I would recommend if you were on the east coast (shorter travel for the fish) The first two are out west.


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Old 08-01-2014, 10:29 AM   #7
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With a 75 the options are endless. I would do a all make Peacock/Hap tank, or a Tropheus tank.


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Old 08-01-2014, 11:21 AM   #8
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For what its worth, Hard water is good for mollies or platys....they tend to be peaceful if you want to mix some of those in.
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Old 08-01-2014, 12:28 PM   #9
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I just checked out that Live Fish Direct website, and I'll tell you how oblivious I am, I didn't even know you could have fish shipped directly to your door overnight lmao. My head is spinning from all the different variety of African Cichlids, I've only seen a few different type at local fish stores/pet stores. Now I feel like I've been living under a rock my whole life. I'm now completely sold on running a whole African Cichlid tank. I was a little disheartened at first when I heard that I wouldn't really be able to add anything else if I got an Oscar, but I'm sure glad I came here for advice because now I'm really pumped about going with African Cichlids with how colorful they are and all the variety and types. I've already got the African Cichlid gravel, I have a good bit of rocks and stone and silk plants already so I think after my tank cycles I'm good to go! How do you guys feel about adding driftwood to the tank?
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Old 08-01-2014, 01:05 PM   #10
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Good deal man...sounds like you caught the bug. Driftwood is a big no no as it lowers the PH...you want to shoot for rocks like limestone which buffers it.


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