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Old 12-31-2011, 04:34 PM   #1
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getting a little nutty

my 55gal is starting to get a little crazy. my fish are chasing eachother & i see a few MINOR nips. nothing too bad but i'm not trying to see it get worse.

i accidently got 2 male kenyi & they dont seem to dig eachother so i'll probably rehome one. but my aggression isnt male on female its female on female, or female at male. (if you can understand that)

i have been feeding less but i dont know if thats the issue.

i have 16 affy's at the moment & my favorite lfs says the more the merrier in a 55, up to 20-25 to keep aggression down.

i think i'm gonna try 20.. objections? advice?

oh & i recently added a small piece of DW, but a drop in ph wouldnt cause aggression, would it??

all help is appreciated!!

thanks
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Old 12-31-2011, 09:05 PM   #2
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Ronnie,
I'm rather new so I'm only saying what I've heard but haven't experienced yet so take it for what it's worth

I say go for 20! I've heard the same thing about overstocking so 20 in a 55 I don't thin is too much.

Don't think the ph would lead to aggression but I'm still learning so.....

Hope it all works out!
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Old 12-31-2011, 09:06 PM   #3
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A slight change in PH shouldnt effect aggression. Most likey the fish getting mature.
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Old 12-31-2011, 10:10 PM   #4
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yeah thats what i thought.. the 2 male kenyi are very young so thats just male on male but the rest, i assume, are most likely maturing as they're over 4 inches.

my ratio is a little off at the moment too

i'm gonna go for the 20.. probably 2 or 3 more (hopefully female) cherry zebras & i def need 1 or 2 more female strawberry peacocks.. i guess it all depends on what i find..

my stock list is all over the place so i have some options .. DEF gotta be female though
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Old 01-01-2012, 03:01 PM   #5
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i agree about the female thing! and you know, u can ask the lfs to lift a fish from the water to vent as long as the shop isnt busy. so u defo get the girls.

sorry to hear about the problems :S i thought they were all sorted!

someone else had found their females attacked eachother, and the dominant one (fight winner) mated with the male. the male didnt go for the weaker one. but this changed over time, the other female won the fights and he chose her and ignored his first female. its wierd, but would explain whats happening with your lassies x

and yesyes with the cherries! xx
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Old 01-01-2012, 03:27 PM   #6
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I maybe wrong but i read this somewhere, and it certainly seems to ring true in my tank.
Kenyi males and females are both born blue, but the male changes to yellow when he matures. If this is always the case it will be easier to pick from mature stock in your lfs. Also not sue if the males develop these or if they are born with them but the males have egg spots on their anal fins, females don't.

Hope this helps and good luck
Dan
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Old 01-01-2012, 03:31 PM   #7
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My male kenyi
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Old 01-01-2012, 03:36 PM   #8
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what you have read is true, however his kenyi's are mature enough to sex and they have got their colours, but thanks for the input

although, the egg spot thing is false really. tank bred fish have egg spots whether they are male or female, and i find the females tend to have more! lol x
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Old 01-01-2012, 04:10 PM   #9
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UPDATE :: BREAK IN THE CASE

first off, thanks for the input everybody

THE BREAK --- my electric yellow has become my newest aggressor. she spent an hour keeping everyone else on one side of the tank. shes around 4inches so she is def maturing, possibly ready to breed?

other than the male vs. male kenyi issue, she seems to be my only real problem.

there is some minor chasing between the rest, but it doesnt seem too serious.

WHAT DOES ONE DO HERE?

i rehomed my borleyi a month or so ago but tried a 'time out' in a breeder net first. it stopped aggression for a few days but then she was back to nutty again in no time, so she had to go.

i wont be trying that again lol

i'm calling around to see what LFS's are open so i can peep what's available & maybe up my stock.

i'm gonna remove everything for a gravel vac / tank revamp tomorrow so hopefully that will help.

mayyyyybe today if i find some fishies

any advice anyone can give is greatly appreciated!!

SIDE NOTE ::
i also havent seen my albino bristlenose in a few days. i'm buggin out that he might be dead lol are they all notorious hiders? mine is really small but he's barely touched my algae so i'm a little worried
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Old 01-01-2012, 09:35 PM   #10
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I feel your pain. I spent a long time today trying to net one of my male labs. He has gotten pummeled real bad. I couldnt get him out. If he would hide from the big male lab he would be ok. In the process I shattered 2 of my glass tops. I dont think hes going to make it. I just dont have the time to break the tank down to get him out today. Its a perfect example of how understocking a mbuna tank is bad.
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Old 01-01-2012, 09:47 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jmedic25
I feel your pain. I spent a long time today trying to net one of my male labs. He has gotten pummeled real bad. I couldnt get him out. If he would hide from the big male lab he would be ok. In the process I shattered 2 of my glass tops. I dont think hes going to make it. I just dont have the time to break the tank down to get him out today. Its a perfect example of how understocking a mbuna tank is bad.
I second that for the both you. I feel your pain on each account and know what your going through. It is tough man... Tough indeed!! I cringe at the thought of breaking down my tank again! I just don't see it happening. When they get bigger maybe they'll be easier to catch of need be. I just don't have it in me.
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Old 01-01-2012, 09:51 PM   #12
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It makes it hard when you dont know the males from the females. But my water is perfect so I just dont want to breakdown now. I think you have to let your tank be to an extent and let nature take its course.
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Old 01-01-2012, 10:11 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by ronnieroach View Post
WHAT DOES ONE DO HERE?
Can you listed the species you have and the quantity as well as genders if known?

You do not necessarily need to increase your numbers beyond 16, you may just need to tweak the numbers, genders or species you have.

Aggression counter-measures:

1. Proper ratio (1m/3+f per species). If this ratio is already in place, add more females. I have some metriaclima msobo's which exhibit intense female vs female aggression. Increasing my female msobo quantity to create a 1m/7+f seemed to solve the aggression problem.

2. Lots or rocks or rock substitutes that provide effective breaks in lines of sight and offer havens. This may require increasing the overall height of the rockscaping.

Sometimes removing an aggressor only creates a 'vacancy' for another fish to assume the role and sometimes that new alpha fish can be worse that its predecessor.
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Old 01-02-2012, 08:03 AM   #14
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THANKS HOMIES!!!

I have:
-1 female kenyi
-1 female electric yellow
-1 female bumblebee
-1 female johanni
-1 female ob peacock
-1 female albino peacock
-1 female strawberry peacock
-1 HOPEFULLY female acei
-1 HOPEFULLY female cherry red zebra
-1 male strawberry peacock
-1 male venustus
-1 male flameback
-1 male victoria nile
-2 male kenyi (1 WAS female til she changed color lol will rehome 1 eventually)
-1 male hap (sold as yellow peacock, still hope it turns into one but that store's listings are always wrong)
-- NEW -- 1 unknown assorted aff - looks like red zebra but i dont think it is - got for aggression, will rehome if causes trouble or if male

if my math is right, lol, i'm up to 17 total

& OY VEY!!! my male to female ratio wassss LEGIT but has gotten away from me a little bit. now i'm almost at 1 to 1!!!

this morning, everyone is hangin together, even my electric.

my plan is to boot the male hap/peacock dude & then 1 of the male kenyi.

then find 1-2 more female strawberry peacocks & 1-2 more female kenyi. if i find any other pretty & DEFINITE females along the way, i'll scoop em up too

my lfs guy's show tanks are STACKED w/ affys & everyone is lookin healthy & un-nipped. maybe overstocking works? its a mixed tank like mine & it flourishes so i might as well try it.

and i could maybe get my ratio back w/o having to boot more than 2

ALL ADVICE IS APPRECIATED!!!

ps, here is my current tank set up. 25 cichlid stones. gonna add some more real stone today to spread it out a bit.
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Old 01-02-2012, 08:49 AM   #15
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To get a better handle on aggression:

Step 1
Re-home all of the non-mbuna's:

-1 female ob peacock
-1 female albino peacock
-1 female strawberry peacock
-1 male strawberry peacock
-1 male venustus
-1 male flameback
-1 male victoria nile
-1 male hap (sold as yellow peacock)

Step 2
Keep 3 or 4 Mbuna species and re-home the others

As a nominal example:

Keep
-1 female electric yellow
-1 HOPEFULLY female acei
-1 female johanni

Rehome
-1 female kenyi
-2 male kenyi
-1 unknown assorted
-1 female bumblebee

Step 3
Create breeding groups of each species comprised of 1 male and 3+ females.

This might involve getting more than your target quantity so you'll have to remove excess males as their genders become apparent, so that in the end you'll have:

1 male yellow lab/3-5 female yellow labs
1 male johanni/3-5 female johanni
1-2 male acei's/4-5 female acei's

I'd probably scratch the acei's (due to the size they get and swimming habits) and johanni's (melanochromis johanni's can be aggressive) and replace them with rusties (or c. afra's) and electric blue johanni's (m. cyaneorhabdos).

Quote:
Originally Posted by ronnieroach View Post
my lfs guy's show tanks are STACKED w/ affys & everyone is lookin healthy & un-nipped. maybe overstocking works? its a mixed tank like mine & it flourishes so i might as well try it.
LFS tanks are temporary in a sense that fish are always coming and going with a constantly changing hierachy, usually stocked with sub-adults. Aggression issues in these tanks usually don't have a chance to formulate because of heavily overstocking and transient occupants. The exception at an LFS would be strictly a "not for sale" very large african cichlid display tanks stocked with fully matured specimens either in recommended gender ratio's or in all male set ups.

Understand that a 55gal is generally considered the minimum tank sized for keeping most lake malawi cichlids long term. In a larger tank you could expand species variety and numbers.
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Old 01-02-2012, 09:14 AM   #16
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well kay-bee, while i appreciate the advice & explanations VERY VERY much, i will NEVER boot my peacocks, haps or vics. i LOVE them too much, not to mention they're awesome specimens!!

if anything, i would boot my mbunas but i am attached to most of them too

(& just to clarify, aggression wasnt CRAZY by any means. it was just elevating from none to some so i thought i'd ask opinions)

i wouldnt mind rehoming the 3 kenyi, electric yellow, bumblebee & the assorted one but my johanni, who actually is a female electric blue, i really dig. & my acei i love to death so dont wanna boot unless i have to.

i never really WANTED to breed. i wouldnt mind seeing the circle of life & all, but i really just wanted colorful fish & bought most before i knew anything about lakes, ratios or anything really.

when i found a bunch to be female i figured i'd go w/ a legit m:f ratio (which i had) but diff species so they probably wouldnt breed (plus i already had quite a mix of breeds from before)

i'm sure my lfs dude would take my mbunas in exchange for some replacements so its a possibility.

maybe i'll go all male peacocks, haps & vics....?!?!?

i have a 75gal waiting for them but we dont have room for it at the moment.

OH, & the lfs tank is display only & its got grown female kenyi to grown male livingstonii & everything inbetween. established for quite some time now too; longer than i've been shopping there at least.

and again, THANKS FOR THE HELP KAYBEE!! i really do appreciate it!!!

i'm just crazy picky & a little risquť i guess when it comes to my tanks lol
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Old 01-02-2012, 09:55 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ronnieroach
i wouldnt mind rehoming the 3 kenyi, electric yellow, bumblebee & the assorted one but my johanni, who actually is a female electric blue, i really dig. & my acei i love to death so dont wanna boot unless i have to.
Imo rehome those and keep the maingano and acei.
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Old 01-02-2012, 10:16 AM   #18
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i like your style joel LOL

& quick question, do males & females both shimmy when they wanna breed or is it only males? if its only males, my attempt at venting my yellow could have been a fail.. "she" is shimmying a bit at the others so now i'm wondering lol
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Old 01-02-2012, 12:37 PM   #19
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"she" has very nice MALE colouring :L the colours are extremely dominant for a female, if anything i didnt know they could look like that. only males go that colour as far as i know.

the suggestions from kay-bee were extremely correct and would probably solve the ultimate problem, so thank you girl

though, as ronnie said he's attatched and its not really fair to overthrow them all when he will only miss them. and as far as i can see, there is only a few aggressors. they should either be rehomed or they need an attitude adjustment somehow.

i have seen females shimmy. my female OB zebra was famous for it cos she shimmied at the CBZ then he'd shimmy at her. i thought it was a male on male aggression show but no, cos she started holding about 3 times :L

all male CAN work... but ud miss out on all the sweet babies!! and what if a male gets unruly and starts a tiff with the others and makes THEM aggressive? they learn form others and adapt just like us so i think u should just remove the bad ones and stock up with females. this is my input but tbh i cant see the exact bad fish as i am not currently in your house :L lol xx
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Old 01-02-2012, 02:56 PM   #20
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my lfs guy says that as long as i overstock a bit i should be ok w/ my ratios. he said his display tanks are mixed male & female & his all look great.

he also said i SHOULD be ok, considering i dont have any real pairs to mate, except the 1 pair of strawberry peacocks & the 3 kenyi, so i've decided to not rehome anyone just yet.

AND YES, my yellow is a MALE!! haha

the blue in his face, im told, indicates he is from asia & somewhat rare. looks like i boofed that one

& he's my only real aggressor.. even the 2 male kenyi seem fine together FOR NOW!! lol

today i grabbed 2 more peacocks & a flame band tropheus .. so now i'm up to 20 & i have my goldface comp in my 20gal waiting to go in
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