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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone, long story short… I have two Rainbow Cichlids that have all of a sudden started to hide or flee at a high speed the second they see anyone come close to the tank or even enter the room. I got them together and have had them for a little over a month, I think they are a male and female too.

I’m really confused because just a week ago they were vibrant and would always come to the front of the tank whenever anyone would come near. They would also be swimming around exploring all throughout the day. Now the smaller of the two which I think is a female has more pronounced black markings and looks visibly stressed most of the time. They eat when I feed the tank but it takes them a good minute to come out of hiding or they just stay under the driftwood and let the food move in towards them.

I did my regular water change on Saturday and added some aquarium salt in case they were sick but it hasn’t seemed to change much. I just hate to see them look so stressed and I hate it, even more, when they go darting around the tank and hit the glass pretty hard.

Does anyone have any ideas of what might be the issue? Or any recommendations on what I can do to help them?

Tank details:
It's a tall 45-gallon tank (24" in height) that's been running for about 3 1/2 months. It has CaribSea Super Naturals Blue Ridge Aquarium Gravel capped with Flourite Sand, and a Hygger Advanced Full Spectrum LED light. There's no CO2 and a Fluval 307 canister filter for filtration.

Current Fish Stock: 2 Rainbow cichlids, Panda and albino cory’s, X-Ray tetras, 3 Yoyo loaches, a Rubblerlip pleco and 2 Mystery snails
Plants: Jungle Val, Amazon Sword, 4 Anubius, a few Crypts, a small patch of Anacharis and 3 newly planted cardinalis plants.

Water Parameters:
Temp – 76 F
ph – 7
KH – 4 (Tap is 3)
GH - 7 (Tap is 4)
TDS 150 - 250 range (Tap is 125ish)

Plant Green Rectangle Botany Organism


· Registered
6 Posts
Sorry for tapping onto your posting.
I have Jewel Cichlid they also do the same.
And they fight as a result I lost 2 females
Tank dominance create this problem
Now I have 2 male but they will hide.
But whenever I clean the tank and remove the decoration (no plants)
They will not hide for a while
But there was a time I caught them by hand and hold them.
They will be able to know I don't mean them no harm they seems to not hide.
Seems like they want to know if they are safe physically.
Not sure but that is the way these species are build.

Another thing have you check the water parameter with the test kit?
Is ti suitable for them?
Do you have an auto feeding unit or you hand feed them?

· Registered
83 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm responding to my own thread in the hopes that someone may have some advice???

Little update though... I now have 4 Rainbow cichlids as I thought adding more would help build up their courage. It definitely helped some but not much. I'm confident that I have one male and three females. Over the last six months, they've been timid and will scare easily but it's become much worse. I HATE seeing them flee so fast that they run into the walls hard or often splash the top of the tank and I have to make sure they didn't leap out of the tank. This happens when anyone comes close to the tank or even enters the room.

Once they realize that I'm not there to hurt them, and in fact, I'm there to feed them or just watch the tank, they slowly make their way back out and proceed to be bright, calm, and curious fish.

Over the last month I stopped trimming my plants as much, let the jungle val really take over, and let the red root floaters grow to a nice size. My thought was that maybe with more cover on the sides and the top of the tank it would help but that doesn't seem to be helping at all.

I know that this type of cichlid is timid and is prone to fleeing like this but I just want to reduce it as much as I can. Does anyone have any recommendations on what I can do to help them?

Taken this morning to show the growth. (Please excuse the breeder box, it's only been there for a few days with a goby from another tank that will be put back tonight.)

Plant community Plant Rectangle Organism Terrestrial plant

Here are three of the rainbows colored up and doing their thing. It takes them at least 10-15 minutes after anyone walks by the tank to get back to this state.

Plant Plant community Terrestrial plant Vegetation Aquatic plant
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