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Old 01-15-2014, 02:32 PM   #1
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Switching to cichlids, what do I need to know?

I have a 28g bowfront that I've had for several years. It's gone through a couple cycles of docile freshwater fish but after an illness went through the tank I lost a good portion of my fish. I'm now left with just 2 neon tetras and 1 albino cherry barb. I'm thinking of donating the remaining 3 fish to my lfs and starting over.

I think this time around I'd like to try some cichlids since they are more colorful and exciting to watch. I'm looking at the african cichlids since most of them don't get too large. I have a few questions first.

1) I know I need to change the substrate but what is best for cichlids, gravel or sand?

2) Is 28g large enough for cichlids?

3) I've heard cichlids do best in a heavily decorated tank so they can establish territories but are plastic plants ok to use instead of live plants?

4) What are some of the best types of cichlids to have in the same tank together?

Thanks for the advice.
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Old 01-15-2014, 02:35 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aqua315 View Post
I have a 28g bowfront that I've had for several years. It's gone through a couple cycles of docile freshwater fish but after an illness went through the tank I lost a good portion of my fish. I'm now left with just 2 neon tetras and 1 albino cherry barb. I'm thinking of donating the remaining 3 fish to my lfs and starting over.

I think this time around I'd like to try some cichlids since they are more colorful and exciting to watch. I'm looking at the african cichlids since most of them don't get too large. I have a few questions first.

1) I know I need to change the substrate but what is best for cichlids, gravel or sand?

2) Is 28g large enough for cichlids?

3) I've heard cichlids do best in a heavily decorated tank so they can establish territories but are plastic plants ok to use instead of live plants?

4) What are some of the best types of cichlids to have in the same tank together?

Thanks for the advice.
Head over to cichlid-forum.com for the best possible advice regarding cichlids. Not to speak badly of this forum, but it doesn't match the level of knowledge on that other side when it comes to cichlids.

In a 28G bowfront you're probably going to be limited to small african river and
tanganyikan cichlids and small south american cichlids.

Things like certain smaller Julidochromis species, blue rams, apistogramma, kribensis. Stuff like that.

If you were thinking of Malawi mbuna, which is what most people refer to as "african cichlids", I think you're out of luck. Even the smallest species like demasoni and saulosi probably won't fit. But hey, go to cichlid-forum.com and find out.

1) I know I need to change the substrate but what is best for cichlids, gravel or sand?

Really up to you. Any fish that like to dig will prefer sand though.

2) Is 28g large enough for cichlids?

Only certain small species.

3) I've heard cichlids do best in a heavily decorated tank so they can establish territories but are plastic plants ok to use instead of live plants?

Plastic plants are ok. If you go with shelldwellers or tanganyikans you're better off with shells (for the shelldwellers) and rocks for the tangs.

4) What are some of the best types of cichlids to have in the same tank together?

http://www.cichlid-forum.com/article...cutter_29g.php
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Old 02-01-2014, 01:41 AM   #3
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This is my tanganyikan set up. Something like this with sand and dry live rock is good for them. I say this because the rock and saltwater sand makes the water harder and increases the ph. If you want to go cheaper, maybe cribinsis or firemouth cichlids
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Old 02-01-2014, 01:44 AM   #4
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Look up "shell dwellers" great for a small tank an they have some of the best personalities o all fish
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