120 Gallon African Tetra Aquarium - Page 3 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #31 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-06-2020, 08:14 PM Thread Starter
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Fantastic looking tank, I really like the fish and plant / scape combo, only thing that would make it better is if it was a 180 gal
Yeah I really wish I had these particular fish in a larger tank. Unfortunately all I could afford now was a 120. The 180 would have been dramatically more. Especially since when I do get a 180 it will have a sump. I already had the filters I am using for this tank on hand so that saved me some money. My plan is to get a 180 next with angelfish and other South American fish and then down the road I want to get something even bigger. 300 maybe? And move my African fish to that. Then maybe use this tank for SE Asian fish like rainbows or something (or just have two African tanks since I love them so much).
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post #32 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-06-2020, 09:16 PM
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Was trying to get a good photo of the Alestopetersius brichardi with my Nikon but they swim back and forth too fast so this is the best I could come up with. I wanted to show how nice the iridescent green stripe is above their dark lateral band. You sort of get the idea here.


Young male Alestopetersius brichardi (red Congo tetra) by Kaveh Maguire, on Flickr



These look exactly like mine ( Well, I have one left now after that ich debacle. Need to get some more). These fish are so beautiful-- rival any other freshwater fish out there.

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Some big beautiful new leaves on my Aponogeton boivinianus and A. madagascariensis. They grow so fast. Especially now that they have CO2 supplementation. I've been trying to figure out how to position the power head on the other side of the tank so that these guys don't get beat down. I tried it out in a few different placements and angles earlier today. This is a little better than it was earlier.

Huge new leaves on Aponogeton boivinianus and A. madagascariensis by Kaveh Maguire, on Flickr
Amazing shot! I wish I had your talents for photography!
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post #33 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-07-2020, 01:48 AM Thread Starter
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Oh I wish I was much better at it. I just take a lot of photos and sometimes I get lucky. My biggest issue now is that since I have tanks all over the room the other tanks often reflect in the photos. So I have to get creative with my angles and I have the lights off time staggered so I can take pictures later at night. I am looking into getting some sort of big black backdrop screen to help with this issue.
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post #34 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-07-2020, 02:01 AM Thread Starter
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My latest dominant pair of Pelviachromis kribensis 'Moliwe' bred a few times in the holding tank they were in but were never successful. The one time they had free swimming fry the timing was awful with their rival cichlids, Steatocranus casuarius, having free swimming fry the next day. The Steatocranus came out on top of that battle.
From the moment I moved all the fish to the new 120 the female has been chasing the male around and trying get get his attention. Sometimes he returns the favor but neither seemed that serious about setting up a spawning site.
It seems they finally have chosen one of the half coconuts in the tank to start a family. Since the tank is planted I was very specific about how I set up the hardscape hoping to prevent the kribs and Steatocranus from unearthing plants. All the rooted plants are at the back of the tank with a wall of dragon stone and driftwood separating the two areas. Half coconuts were set up in front of the driftwood near the shallow sand at the front of the tank in hopes they would find these suitable and not go digging around at the back.
It worked! They have been moving sand around since yesterday and today seem to be in the act of laying eggs. Going in and out of the cave, flaring at each other, and pushing around more sand. Hopefully babies to come and they have better luck this time now that there is plenty of room for the other cichlids to be able to keep their distance and the tetras too far above them to be any threat.

Pelvicachromis kribensis 'Moliwe' courtship by Kaveh Maguire, on Flickr


A bit of video of their courtship to come soon.


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post #35 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-07-2020, 03:44 AM
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My latest dominant pair of Pelviachromis kribensis 'Moliwe' bred a few times in the holding tank they were in but were never successful. The one time they had free swimming fry the timing was awful with their rival cichlids, Steatocranus casuarius, having free swimming fry the next day. The Steatocranus came out on top of that battle.
From the moment I moved all the fish to the new 120 the female has been chasing the male around and trying get get his attention. Sometimes he returns the favor but neither seemed that serious about setting up a spawning site.
It seems they finally have chosen one of the half coconuts in the tank to start a family. Since the tank is planted I was very specific about how I set up the hardscape hoping to prevent the kribs and Steatocranus from unearthing plants. All the rooted plants are at the back of the tank with a wall of dragon stone and driftwood separating the two areas. Half coconuts were set up in front of the driftwood near the shallow sand at the front of the tank in hopes they would find these suitable and not go digging around at the back.
It worked! They have been moving sand around since yesterday and today seem to be in the act of laying eggs. Going in and out of the cave, flaring at each other, and pushing around more sand. Hopefully babies to come and they have better luck this time now that there is plenty of room for the other cichlids to be able to keep their distance and the tetras too far above them to be any threat.

Pelvicachromis kribensis 'Moliwe' courtship by Kaveh Maguire, on Flickr


A bit of video of their courtship to come soon.
Cool! Those are beautiful cichlids!
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post #36 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-07-2020, 05:08 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah they have been really fun. So great seeing their spawning behavior and them rearing their young in a community tank.


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post #37 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-10-2020, 07:34 PM Thread Starter
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Bummer man. I placed an order with the wet spot for another 8 Bathyaethiops breuseghemi (red cap moon tetras) to go along with the 3 I have had for several years but they said there is a problem with them so they can't ship them. They must just be a really delicate fish that ships poorly because this is the 4th time I have tried to order them and there has been a problem. In fact the reason I only have 3 is the first time I tried to order 6 there were only 3 healthy enough to send. Hopefully I will be able to get more at some point in the future.


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post #38 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-11-2020, 05:54 PM Thread Starter
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Oooh my fish order has arrived in San Luis Obispo and is on its way to me now. Following on the little UPS map. Yay!
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post #39 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-12-2020, 01:40 AM
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The tank looks great and the fish are beautiful. I'm a big fan of tetras also.

Thanks for labeling your plants. I'm always looking for something different and when I see a plant I like it's hard to match the name from a plant in a tread. I guess I could always ask.

Enjoying your tank build, will continue following along.
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post #40 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-12-2020, 06:31 PM
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Oooh my fish order has arrived in San Luis Obispo and is on its way to me now. Following on the little UPS map. Yay!
Hope everything arrived healthy and happy. Those Cichlids above are absolutely stunning. Very nice shot!
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post #41 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-14-2020, 06:57 AM Thread Starter
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The 120 has cleared up a great deal the past couple of days. Just look at the size of those Madagascar lace plant leaves.

120 gallon aquarium by Kaveh Maguire, on Flickr
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post #42 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-15-2020, 01:12 AM
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Tank looks great.

Big fan of the Kribensis, we use to always have them at my parents shop but now a days I never see them in any of the LFS (well before they closed down anyway).
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post #43 of 43 (permalink) Old 02-17-2020, 03:51 AM Thread Starter
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Ongoing saga of my Pelvicachromis kribensis 'Moliwe' parents. After laying their eggs in the half coconut I posted the photo of above it seemed to me that the parents guarded the coconut cave until they hatched. They then suddenly started guarding the hollow branch of this large piece of driftwood in the photo below. I would often see the female swimming head first into the hollowed out left branch as if she was tending something. I assumed that she moved the wigglers there (wigglers are what baby cichlids are called after they hatch but before they become free swimming) but I wasn't 100% sure because I wasn't able to see them. I just had to wait and see but I was certain she was using defensive behavior so I was pretty sure this was the new spot for the young.

Pair of Pelvicachromis kribensis 'Moliwe' by Kaveh Maguire, on Flickr

Then yesterday I noticed she had moved to the small piece of driftwood resting on rocks in the center of the tank. Her behavior was still guarding behavior so I was pretty sure the wigglers had been moved again. Early today I finally had confirmation when I saw some free swimming babies following her out of the little protected area she had brought them.


Very quickly they started making their way around the tank on the hunt for food. They ended up on the large piece of driftwood grazing on biofilm. This becomes a danger because the further up they go from the sand the more likely they are to be picked off by the African tetras who always stay in the upper two thirds of the tank. In fact after watching this next video I realized that while I was filming a few babies strayed from the protection of the parents and one of them is grabbed by a two and a half month old Steatocranus. The father chases him off but it is too late for that baby. As upsetting as this is it is actually ideal that I have confirmation that these "teenage" fry are big enough to prey on the babies. I do not have room for all of them and I have found that other young cichlids work best for keeping the population under control.

We'll see how many babies survive.

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