South/Central American Cichlid tank. Advice needed.
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Old 05-04-2013, 05:31 AM   #1
EntoCraig
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South/Central American Cichlid tank. Advice needed.


I'm going to have a spare 53 gallon (48x15x17) tank next month. I want to setup an amazon style tank with fallen branches, sand substrate, and some medium sized rocks.

I need some insight on my stocking options. I want Firemouths to be the center piece fish, but I would also like to add a few Rainbow cichlids and/or Jewel cichlids if possible. (Open to other suggestions)

There will also be some small plecos and large tetras or swordtails.

The only thing I am unsure on is the quantity of each fish.

Your thoughts?
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Old 05-04-2013, 11:54 AM   #2
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I keep firemouths, and though they can behave when younger they can get real nasty as they get older. I've had to keep pairs in 55g's to themselves. When i first got into firemouths i had 6, 3 pairs, and 1 pair killed off the other 2 pairs.

I had a few convicts with them at one point, i had to remove the convicts, they were getting beat up too much. If your going with that size tank, i'd keep it just firemouths, and build around them a nice biotope. Tetras may, or may not do ok in the long run. Pleco should be ok. I wouldnt do any other cichlids of similar size as the tank room just isnt enough.
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Old 05-04-2013, 12:28 PM   #3
EntoCraig
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The tank will be heavily wooded and have plenty of rocks. With this in mind, and If I only went with firemouths, how many would you keep?
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Old 05-05-2013, 01:56 AM   #4
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Just two. ALthough you mentioned jewels... A pair of H guttatus would absolutely thrash a pair of firemouths. Most Jewels are vile creatures.
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Old 05-05-2013, 02:30 AM   #5
James M
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Not to mention they're African, not South American...
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Old 05-05-2013, 01:25 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EntoCraig View Post
The tank will be heavily wooded and have plenty of rocks. With this in mind, and If I only went with firemouths, how many would you keep?
I would get like 6 juvies, and see who pairs up, and sell the excess on craiglist. A breeding pair would do ok in a 55g, maybe 2 pairs if you have more luck then me, and they are more mid level swimmers so dont cram too much stuff in the tank.

You should look into geophagus species for south american fish instead of central american firemouths. May like them more, and give you more flexibility for tank mates
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Old 05-05-2013, 04:42 PM   #7
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G. steindachneri is my all time favorite Geophagus. Attractive, doesn't get too large, easy going, easy to spawn. Great fish.
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