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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone.

I am hoping for a bit of advice on how to handle my current situation.

I have 7 tapajos (geophagus cichlids) with 50 ish lemon tetras. Here is a horrible cell phone pic on the tank today as a reference.


My two largest one seem to be moving out an about all the time. They have divided tank in two down the middle but mainly occupy the front half's of the tank. This leaves the back part of the tank for the other 5 to use. In that back area the 5 exist well together but still have somewhat smaller territories.

The main piece of driftwood on the left half is hollow behind it and 1-2 of them hang out there.

During feeding time they will all be eating fine together with no issues. They all show great color for their age and are otherwise healthy.

I feel the two largest ones defend their areas so well that they don't allow the smaller ones to come up front or explore much of the tank.

But the big ones won't harass the smaller ones so long as they keep out of their territories.

My question is will this eventually even out a bit better? Like as the smaller ones get larger with they be able to compete a bit more for space? Or is it as simple as just not enough room?

The 2 largest ones are maybe 4 inches while the smaller ones are 3-3.5 inches.

Here is a pic of them eating, this can give you an idea of their sizes. And you can see they all do fine during eating times.
 

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Children Boogie
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They are pretty.

heh, they're cichlids. Your situation isn't going to change. Best to put the smaller guys in another tank if you want to see them.
 

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Alternatively, you could take the big guys out for a little while and let the smaller ones establish new territories in the extra space.
 

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Children Boogie
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Alternatively, you could take the big guys out for a little while and let the smaller ones establish new territories in the extra space.
yeah but they'd get kicked out of their new territory once the big fish are reintroduced. The alphas have their way.
 

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Sounds less like a size question and more of a male/ female question? Any idea of sex of the fish? Guessing at that without knowing the fish more.
But then I might suggest some changes if/ when you feel it might be needed. I'm not sure I would want to mess with a nice tank at this time but moving some things around can create a different set of territories. It might look from the pictures as if there is a somewhat solid line of décor, left to right down the tank center? Perhaps if it would not be too much hassle, sliding one or more of the wood to be less in line and make small but distinct spots rather than the two front/back areas?
My thought is that they may tend to react more when they can look along the bottom and see the fish than if they are working the bottom and there are no other competition in sight. Look for better sight blocks, perhaps? I am not a geo keeper but with other cichlids, more hiding spots available makes for less hiding.
Good fences can make good neighbors as well as it can lead to good fish as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
These fish are impossible to sex untill you see them spawn. So I have no clue about sexing.

I could try rearranging some hardscape or adding more to break up site lines.

Hoping when they even out in size things will improve.
 

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These fish are impossible to sex untill you see them spawn. So I have no clue about sexing.

I could try rearranging some hardscape or adding more to break up site lines.

Hoping when they even out in size things will improve.
Just guessing but in many cichlids the male are bigger than the female and that is what was driving my thinking. Without knowing if the geo are the same, one might move all the larger and never have spawning.
Should be somebody here show up that keep geo but if not, I would step on over to the cichlid-forum site and ask as it does fit right into their main interest.
Cichlid-Forum.com

As a second thought on sexing, they may be big enough to check sex by "venting" if you are familiar with that? Kind of hit and miss at times but might help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I will look into checking venting, but as far as I know size isn't a difference nor is color.

Thanks crazy plant guy,

I really wanted to keep tapajos and from my research and their names, I knew i wasn't going to be able to have a standard planted tank.

It's more of a biotope-ish theme. All ferns and anubias and bolbitis is attached to the wood. The wood is waterlogged and can be rearranged very easily.

I am going to let it grow super thick like a heavy canopy for the fish. As the tank matures I think it will look great.
 

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At best, I find venting to be a bit of 50/50 at the times, I tried to use it. Turning the fish over and holding it while looking and lots of times needing a magnifier, just don't make for getting a good look. But when it is large enough to get a good look it is often very obvious. Larger fish do make it much easier to see but it also makes it harder to hold them steady.
 
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