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I have had a tropical aquarim for more than an year now. Now, I want to convert it into a malawi cichlid tank.

I have a 30 gallon wide tank with the following dimensions - 36x12x17. I want to have some plants like anubias, java fern and vals in the tank and am interested in having a 3 species tank. I certainly want to have Electric Yellow Labs. For the other two species I like one with bright blue and black stripes and another one I like is a bright orange cichlid.

Other than the Yellow Labs, I dont know what the other two species names are. Could you please suggest what are the two fishes that have the colors I want and are compatible with the Yellow Labs. These should be not be very aggresive and fine with the plants.

Another question I have is that, if I get the fish as juvies, how would I know whether they are male or female?. I read that there should be only 1 male for every 3 females or so. Where would I be able to exactly get the desired sex of the cichlids. Any and all advices, suggestions that you would provide would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Well, all mbuna except labs and "rusties" are aggressive, and most eat plants, but anubias and java fern/moss , and vals are usually tough enough.

you can tell the sex of mouthbrooders(all mbuna) by the male's "egg spots" on the anal fin, the females will have few to none.

Bright orange- "red zebras" Metriaclima estherae


Blue and black- ther's a ton.
all or most of the "afra" varieties, Pseudotropheus saulosi , Pseudotropheus demonsi
Pseudotropheus saulosi


Cynotilapia afra "jalo reef"


Cynotilapia sp.
 
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