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Old 02-14-2014, 11:04 PM   #1
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Help!

Please don't freak out about the condition of the following tanks. I have just taken a new teaching position and these are 2 of the tanks that were in the room. I really need help and guidance on what to do/where to start in this process. I do have some fish knowledge and have had community tanks for a long time, but never cichlids.

Okay here is the big tank in its current state:


My Questions:
1. What is all this white crusty stuff and how do I get rid of it?
2. There is no light on the tank, the one up there is from a 10 gallon that was sitting next to it. Are there any special lighting requirements for these guys?
3. There are not anywhere near enough hiding areas for the fish in this tank. How would you recommend restructuring this?
4. The substrate is some type of crushed shell? Any ideas/thoughts on this?

Moving on:
Could you help me doing some identification? I couldn't get any really good pictures of the fish so bear with me. I think the big blue one is a female Kenyi, the blue with yellow tails are acei, and the orange I think are red zebras. Do these sound reasonable? Here are some pics:




Again sorry they aren't the greatest pics. The original owner said the oranges were yellow labs, but they look nothing like that to me. Anyway thoughts on IDs? They seem to get along okay.

There was also this tank:


Yes, it is a 10 gallon. Yes, it is coated in slim. Yes, there was an adult cichlid living in this tank. There was a 4 inch male Auratus in here. I guess he was really mean to all the other cichlids in the big tank and was banished. I have since setup and moved him to this 30 gallon tank:


He is currently by himself. I would honestly like to move him back into the big tank and use this tank for an Amazon tank. Will this be possible or should I just leave him all alone in here? I feel like its just a waste of a tank for one fish. Also, do I need to change/add anything to this tank for him?

As a kind of minor issue, I would really like to see the colors on these fish pop. The Auratus is looking better now that he's in a bigger clean tank, but I feel like he is still getting lost in the dark tank, and the big tank is SUPER dark. How do I fix this? What background color would you suggest?

Sorry this is so long. Any help on anything would be much appreciated.
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Old 02-15-2014, 02:17 PM   #2
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The pics did not show up could u repost the pics if be more than glad to help you
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Old 02-15-2014, 06:18 PM   #3
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So from what I gather there living in a 30 gallon? This is too small for cichlids. You should either rehome them or upgrade the tank (most cichlids should have at least a 40 gallon long, that is the bare minimum, 55+ is best)
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Old 02-15-2014, 06:47 PM   #4
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The pics didn't show up can you re load them so we can help
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Old 02-15-2014, 07:10 PM   #5
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That's great of you to try and resolve all the issues going on and clean up the situation! I'd love to offer help. But like was said the pics did not show up. Please try again and also tell us what size tanks with which fish in them, filtration etc.....
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Old 02-15-2014, 07:12 PM   #6
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You'd may also benefit most from bringing the aggressive guys back to a pet store and setting up some community tanks for the kids to enjoy.
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Old 02-15-2014, 07:52 PM   #7
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I wouldn't suggest an Amazon build for a 30g- the only NW cichlid I can honestly think of for this would be a pair of rams. I'm just setting up my first African set up now so I don't know enough to advise on that

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Old 02-15-2014, 09:17 PM   #8
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Sorry, I'm not sure what to do. When I open the thread the pictures are there. Maybe I'll try adding them as an attachment.

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Old 02-15-2014, 09:19 PM   #9
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Here's the new 30 Gallon. Did this work? Can you see the pics?
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Old 02-15-2014, 09:20 PM   #10
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Looks larger then 30 gallons to me.. But the white stuff is just built up water deposits. Vinegar seems to work well to get rid of that. Soak some paper towel and let it sit on it and soak. You can also use a razor blade and scrap it.
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Old 02-15-2014, 09:21 PM   #11
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Oh sorry. I didn't realize there was three tanks. I thought it was just a 30 and 10.
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Old 02-15-2014, 09:29 PM   #12
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I think that's good for hiding spots honestly. You can stack more rocks. But it isn't lacking to bad. Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByAquarium Advice1392517671.991147.jpg
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ID:	222873 This is my tank and I have a lot more cichlids then you do, and just those rocks do the job. (The plants are only in there during spawning to block site)
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Old 02-15-2014, 09:31 PM   #13
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The big tank is a 55 gallon. Sorry, should have made that clear. Just vineger to get that white stuff off is great.

I got a bunch of clay pots today and am planning on turing the tank into something like the one in this forum.
55 Gallon Tank: Cichlid Tank - Members Fish Tanks - 83900

How would you recommend cleaning/redoing this? Take all the fish out. Put them in buckets? Do I need to sort them in their own buckets by type?

Also the substrate, whatever it is, is FULL of poop as the tank hasn't been cleaned since whenever those water crystals started to form. How should I go about getting it really clean? I have a gravel vacuum, but I feel like I'm going to get all the water out of the tank LONG before I get all the poop out. Do I just keep filling and suctioning?
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Old 02-15-2014, 10:19 PM   #14
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Just need a desperate wc and some cleaning like mentioned vinegar with a cloth or a sponge a razor blade works wonders just be careful not to scratch the tanks
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Old 02-15-2014, 10:20 PM   #15
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Could also add more rocks like quartz or river rock. Lime stone
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Old 02-15-2014, 10:39 PM   #16
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Thanks for the cleaning tips. I'm glad it should be a fairly easy process.

If I get this all cleaned up, would I be able to add more fish? There are currently only the 6. If so, what would you suggest, and how would I add them? The ones at my LFS are only an inch or so long.
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Old 02-15-2014, 10:46 PM   #17
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What's in each tank? And how big? Adding to an established tank w bigger fish in my experience is not gonna be easy.
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Old 02-15-2014, 10:48 PM   #18
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In a 55 gallon you could add quiet a few more. The ones you have now are pretty common ones. You could add more of those since they do best in groups. I have some cichlids that are now reaching 5" and threw in an inch long new one a couple weeks ago and he is doing fine. Add more hiding spots and some fake plants until they realize dominance.
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:48 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erikmoseley View Post
What's in each tank? And how big? Adding to an established tank w bigger fish in my experience is not gonna be easy.
I'm not sure what all the fish are. Check the pics and let me know what you think. In the 55 gallon tank I think the big one is a female Kenyi. There are 3 acei and 2 possible red zebra? The Kenyi is the biggest and is 5-6 inches. The Red zebras are around 3 and the acei are around 2.5. The tank is fairly peaceful right now but I'd like a few more in there. Maybe some yellow labs or something blue?

In the 30 gallon it's just the Auratus and he's around 4 inches. I'm just accepting the Auratus will have to stay by himself in the 30.

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Old 02-15-2014, 11:50 PM   #20
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You could try looking on local classified to see if anyone if anyone is rehoming larger cichlids. Sometimes you can even order larger ones. I think electric yellows would look nice. My favourite of my group is my male Ice blue.
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