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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 55g with one male VT Betta, 5 neon tetras, and I finally added 5 Cichlids.


My Betta has been flaring at everything, and I am not sure what to do because I have grown attached to him.

I recently buy a 5g tank but I put another Betta in there, I am not attached to this one - but it's colors are nicer than the one I currently have.

So here is my situation...

55g - 5tetras, 5cichlids, and 1 betta

5g - 1 betta and 1 bumblebee goby

fish bowl - empty and I don't want to put the Betta here...


Is it best to keep my betta in it's tank and see how the cichlids treat him?
(So far the Betta is bossing around all the cichlids, and no nipping has happened within 24hours)

Is it better to give my Betta back to the pet store where it sits in a cup with 15+ other bettas (slim chance of someone buying him)? Or is it better to risk him in my tank?

https://youtu.be/S5ba6htt1mc

Here is a video I uploaded to youtube, please give it 15 minutes to process (posted 6:10PM PST)
 

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@ xquisit,

I just watched your video and came to the conclusion that you just set up the tank. So in a tank NEW for all inhabitants a peaceful co-existence of all fish may be possible for a couple of days. Further, your cichlids are still juveniles and at this time they are more compatible with other fish species.

Make no mistake though mature african chiclids will combat everything that moves in the tank!. So I worry most about the Neon Tetras and the Betta. ( My cichlids will even pick snails from the wall.) Perhaps you can put a divider in your tank and keep the cichlids apart from the other species?

Also, cichlids are the least combatant when you crowd them out with other cichlids! Please, keep that in mind.

You should also keep in mind that cichlids are no friends of plants either. I have tried a couple of times and failed miserably. While it looked ok initially, there came the day where they went into attack mode and completely shredded all plants in the tank. You will find reports on the net, where anacharis was actually used as food for cichlids.

I truly wish you the best of luck with this combination!!
 

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You made a mistake of putting incompatible fish together: there is no such thing as a "community tank" with African Cichlids. I am also yet to see a planted tank with African Cichlids. Your only choice with a happy ending is physical separation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
My tank is only two weeks new, and I don't think it's fully cycled (haven't done a water test today or yesterday, but I will shortly)

These guys are going to munch my plants (Cichlids?)


What have I got myself into?



I don't want to separate my tank - I might as well put my Betta in a fish bowl and keep it.

I am super worried about my plants (I spent a lot of money on my setup).
 

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What breed of cichlids are these? There are plenty of examples of cichlids in planted tanks. https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=yellow+lab+planted+tank Are members of this species known diggers? I wouldnt panic yet the first step is to know exactly what you have.
I'm not suggesting what you have is going to work either but it may be possible.
 

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@xquisit,

I didn't mention it before, but you set up a beautiful tank. I would also not worry too much about cycling although it is important. Remember, ammonia is mostly toxic at pH above 7. So at a pH lower than 7 ammonia exists predominantly in its ammonium form ( which is non-toxic).

As I indicated before, you may even have a couple of weeks before the cichlids adopt to the tank and become territorial.
I suggest however that you remove them as quickly as possible into a cichlids only tank (without plants). To actually catch them in your current tank will really not be an easy feat! Build some traps perhaps. Good luck with separating your cichlids.
 

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Aren't those cichlids from hard water? Like around pH=8 and betta more like 6.5? This might be a problem too. There're African Cichlids that live in soft water (kribensis) and they're pretty good with plants (they only mess with soil), but a betta with cichlids sound like death...
 

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Aren't those cichlids from hard water? Like around pH=8 and betta more like 6.5? This might be a problem too. There're African Cichlids that live in soft water (kribensis) and they're pretty good with plants (they only mess with soil), but a betta with cichlids sound like death...

It depends on which lake they come from. Lake Malawi is not near as hard or as high PH as others.


I think you need to do more research before you buy fish. You have fish that get a lot bigger than neons not to mention how aggresse they can get.


We all have a learning curve and we have all made mistakes. I for one starting out made many such mistakes too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thank you all for the positive feedback, I reread all of your posts and I am always soaking in the knowledge. Such a blessing to be here.

I do not have names of the cichlids, yet.

Good news:


I am removing all the cichlids

I did not want my fish stressing but it was really hard trying to catch them in my small net.

I did not even catch one.
 

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Thank you all for the positive feedback, I reread all of your posts and I am always soaking in the knowledge. Such a blessing to be here.

I do not have names of the cichlids, yet.

Good news:


I am removing all the cichlids

I did not want my fish stressing but it was really hard trying to catch them in my small net.

I did not even catch one.
Get another net and use the smaller one to chase the fish into the larger net.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
All of them

I have six to remove


Two small cichlids (African)
Three denpseys
One big cichlid (African)

I want to make my tank a place for shrimp to breed... Another bad idea? Let me know. And I will return the fish tomorrow
 

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Neons are docile so you shouldn't have an issue trying to breed shrimp as long as your betta isn't too aggressive but in something that size I wouldn't worry about him. You could add some more schools of small tetras which would add nice colour. Like harlequin rasboras or rummy nose tetras are great :)
 
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