Male Apisto - Centerpiece Fish for 10g?
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Old 03-24-2013, 09:54 PM   #1
AquaStudent
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Male Apisto - Centerpiece Fish for 10g?


I've been thinking of venturing out into some New World cichlids and want to know some more about some of the dwarf CA/SA's.

Right now my set-up is limited to a 10 gallon which is quite limited in stocking.

The old stocking on the tank was a betta community. My super-delta tail betta, Vesuvius, passed away about a month ago leaving me with a school of 10 very old neons (they've been getting pretty scraggly with their age).

Anyway, I'm trying to decide in which direction to take the tank. Would a lone apisto (depending on the species, because I'm sure I can't throw a generalization over the entire family) be happy in a planted 10 gallon as a centerpiece fish?

A few of the apistos that have caught my eye:
Apisto cacatuoides "Triple Red"
apisto agassizi
Apisto borellii
Quite frankly, I don't know enough about all the species to say which one in particular I like best. Suggestions are welcome



My situation is a bit tricky. I'm a senior in college and will be graduating in May assuming I don't MAJORLY mess up. I have 7 graduate school applications out (currently have been accepted to the Master's of Physics at SUNY Albany and am on the waitlist for the doctorate program, and am high on the waitlist for Montana State U's Ph.D physics program) so I don't know where I'll be 3 months from now. Once I get settled somewhere I would love to start up a small breeding population, primarily with either Apistos or mbuna/haps/peacocks (depending on what I can set up). But because I am not certain of when I can upgrade I don't want to invest in a pair of apistos because they will be limited to the 10g for at least a few months. From what I saw at a local club's meeting (some members shared photos and experience of their fish rooms) a 10g can work very well for a breeding tank but I'm certain the neons would not survive a breeding pair of Apistos (right?)

I'm rambling and procrastonating from my calculus proofs at this point so if you happened to be bored enough to read all of that thanks and maybe try stumbleupon instead to cure your boredom.

Thanks!
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Old 03-24-2013, 09:58 PM   #2
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Default Male Apisto - Centerpiece Fish for 10g?

In a well planted 10 any of the three you mentioned would be fine. I would suggest no more then a pair given the tank space though.
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Old 03-24-2013, 10:13 PM   #3
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Hello aquastudent! I'm a subscriber why not go with a German ram? But a lone male a apisto would do fine in a10g with the neons but throwing a female in there might be a different story. Maybe someone who had experience with a pair with chime in since I've only kept males.

Last edited by 10gallonplanted; 03-24-2013 at 10:13 PM.. Reason: J
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Old 03-24-2013, 10:13 PM   #4
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How bad does the breeding aggression tend to be from apistos?

I'd be concerned about getting a pair because in that space I'm not sure if I could keep anything else in the tank.

Thanks for your response (that was quick!)
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Old 03-24-2013, 10:21 PM   #5
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Most of it is just chasing the other fish away from what I have read. But once again I have never bred them.
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Old 03-24-2013, 10:42 PM   #6
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The important part to remember is how well your tank is planted. Male Apistos will lay claim to a territory and if the female is not ready to breed he will chase her away from his territory until she is ready. In a 10 gallon this could be harmful and even fatal given the tank space but if well planted to break the line of sight often times no real harm is done. In my experience I was not able to breed Apistos in 10 gallons but my tanks were not heavily planted as well. My tanks consisted of java fern/moss, Anubis, leaf litter and dwarf water lettuce along with malyasian and manzanita drift wood. With my set up the males were quite aggressive towards the females and with such a small tank the females were often running and hiding. I have since opted my 10's for 20 gallon longs and it seems to be a better layout for them. If you plan on just one male Apisto a 10 would be fine, well planted 10 gallon might work for pairs from what I have heard. I've kept eight different species and of Apistogrammas both Agassizii and Cacatuoides (they can get nasty in a small tank) but not Borelli yet. I have heard they are smaller species when full grown so a 10 gallon might work with a pair of these. Give Apistos a shot you will not be disappointed as they are lovely fish.
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Old 03-24-2013, 10:51 PM   #7
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An Apisto might be pushing it in a 10, I think it could be done but theres got to be a lot to keep him occupied (i.e. Plants, and places to explore, Other fish?)
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Old 03-24-2013, 11:06 PM   #8
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Thanks for the input guys! I recognize you 10gallonplanted I was planning on doing a video tonight to announce the end of the contest and that I plan to have a winner by the end of the week and to see what others think about an apisto Have you entered? You still have a couple of hours to get your entry in.

I'll upload an image of the tank in its current state. That way there's no bias towards heavy/light planting from me

I probably wouldn't go with a pair unless I find a really good deal on one anyway because I don't really have the space to grow the fry up. Soon though, very soon

What are your favorite species of apistos?

@DBlauJ - I completely understand what you're saying about the limited number of hiding spots in a 10g. That makes complete sense. It'd be much trickier getting away if there's nowhere to run.

How nasty are apistos to other fish? Chasing other fish out of their territory could go many ways. They may have a large territory (for a 10g) that means there aren't any places the other fish can relax in or that it's just "harmless" chasing. It seems...very risky
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Old 03-24-2013, 11:14 PM   #9
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Default Male Apisto - Centerpiece Fish for 10g?

Community wise they are peaceful. Mine take no notice to my tetras, pencil fish and ottos. Only time Apistos get nasty is if a female has eggs or fry. Males don't care too much for other fish.
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Old 03-24-2013, 11:23 PM   #10
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Yeah I will enter to night! I have been putting it off due to the fact that my shrimpandinvertz account being hacked.. But I will! You have me a lucky reminder.

Posted mine!

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Old 03-25-2013, 07:41 AM   #11
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Sort of as an aside: depending on where you are, mbuna breeding may be good or may be a dud. I can't get rid of most of my spawn, mostly because I'm in a city area. However, since you're in upstate NY, you may be able to get a decent price. Be warned that you'll need at least a 55 gallon. There are no mbunas that will be even slightly okay in a 10g!
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Old 03-25-2013, 07:48 AM   #12
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My triple red apisto rules my 29g with a single angelfish ( rescued ) and there is no way id have him in a 10g . hes less than a year old and close to 10cm long.
German blue rams or gold rams would be ok impo
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Old 03-25-2013, 01:06 PM   #13
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I wasn't saying try breeding mbuna in a 10g. I'm looking for a centerpiece fish for my planted 10g.

I have a 55 gallon mixed AC tank (not really ideal for breeding though).

@Grifter - That's a huge Triple Red! I thought they topped out at 8 cm. That's crazy. Is there anything else in the 29 other than the angel and apisto?
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Old 03-25-2013, 01:22 PM   #14
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I'd recommend against an apisto in a 10. The tank is too small to house one comfortably and due to their proclivity for claiming a territory even when alone it is all too likely your other fish will suffer.
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Old 03-26-2013, 03:23 AM   #15
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Here are shots of the tank as it looks right now. It could use an artist's touch (which will probably not come from me anytime soon).





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