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120l - Cichlids

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Hello, I kept a mixed community tank roughly 6 years ago but packed it in when my little one was born, Cut the story short i’m looking to get back into it.

I’ve got my eyes on a Fluval 120l - Dimensions 50 x 80 x 35cm

The fish I’m quite keen in stocking are cichlids, Now i understand there are thousands different types and this is where you lot come in lol

Could you give me some names that would be suitable to live together and to have a 120 as there home.

I’ve been on google and YouTube last couple weeks and there are just so many I’m just not sure where to start !

So far If I’m correct electric blue rams and Shell dwellers would be suitable.

All the help and advice would be appreciated

Thank you
 
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Colin_T

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Welcome back to fish keeping :)

What are the tank dimensions (length x width x height)?

What is the GH (general hardness), KH (carbonate hardness) and pH of your water supply. This information can usually be obtained from your water supply company's website or by telephoning them. If they can't help you, take a glass full of tap water to the local pet shop and get them to test it for you. Write the results down (in numbers) when they do the tests. And ask them what the results are in (eg: ppm, dGH, or something else).

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Blue and gold rams (Mikrogeophagus ramirezi) come from soft water with a pH below 7.0 and a GH below 150ppm.
Shell dwellers are from Africa's rift lakes and require hard water with a pH above 7.6 and a GH above 300ppm.

Most cichlids are territorial and having more than one species in a small tank will lead to fighting. In big tanks you can have 2 species and hopefully they will live at opposite ends of the tank and get along.

Some people keep a colony of cichlids with 1 male and a group of females.

The best thing to do is visit your local pet shop and make a list of the fish and plants you like. Post that list here, along with the tank dimensions, pH, GH and KH, and we can advise you on what will go together.
 
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chigwellhammer
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I have now added the dimensions to the opening post, Regarding water i will do that test asap then.

I am aware of cycling etc So it will be cycled before purchasing the fish.
 

Moony42

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Then buy peacock cichlids. or try chevrons. I also suggest you buy baby cichlids.
Or buy a lot of bettas and make a sorority
 
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chigwellhammer
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I thought Peacocks would need a larger tank then 120l ?
 

Byron

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It is better to know the water parameters before we start suggesting fish, as they may or may not be suited.

The GH and pH you should be able to obtain from your water authority if you are on city water. That is all we need to know.
 
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chigwellhammer
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Hope this helps, Got the stats after putting in my
Postcode on the water company website

HARD water.
Calcium carbonate(CaCO3): 250 ppm

Natural fluoride content of your water:0.2 ppm

PH Value - 6.5-9.5
 

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That s
Hope this helps, Got the stats after putting in my
Postcode on the water company website

HARD water.
Calcium carbonate(CaCO3): 250 ppm

Natural fluoride content of your water:0.2 ppm

PH Value - 6.5-9.5
That sounds like Rift Lakes water to me. Go with the Shell Dwellers. They are fun to watch.
 

Byron

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That s

That sounds like Rift Lakes water to me. Go with the Shell Dwellers. They are fun to watch.
I agree.

On that pH, there is a significant range, which frankly I cannot imagine being accurate. With water this hard the pH is most likely to be high on the basic side (above 7, and here well above).
 
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Would these work?

Shell Dwellers
Lemon Cichlids - Neolamprologus leleupi
Rams
Dwarf Cichlids
 
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Byron

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Would these work?

Shell Dwellers
Neolamprologus leleupi
Rams
Dwarf Cichlids
Not together, no. Which brings up the question of the importance of the GH and pH, so a brief explanation should help.

Freshwater fish species have each evolved over thousands of years to function in quite specific water with respect to the hardness (GH and pH and temperature, though we can leave temperature out here because that is easily controlled by the aquarist. Some species require soft water, some require harder water, some are sort of in the middle provided it is not extreme either way. The fish need this because in the wrong water they have significant problems carrying out their basic normal physiological functions.

The species that live in the African rift lakes have evolved to live in moderately hard to hard water with a basic pH. By contrast, dwarf cichlids which have evolved in the waters of parts of South America are designed to function in very soft water with an acidic pH. When placed in hard water they have problems functioning, and this weakens them even further, making them susceptible to disease and other problems, and they have a shorter lifespan as a result. One known issue is calcium accumulation that blocks the kidneys, killing the fish. This does not happen overnight, but continually depending upon the level of calcium.

This is why we ask for GH and pH of your source water. The GH will not change much if at all in the aquarium, and the pH is related and tends to remain stable because of the buffering capability of the water which is connected to the GH and the KH (carbonate hardness or Alkalinity). Selecting fish that will function at their best in your water is kind to the fish and in the long term rewarding. The fish will be happy and healthy.

The Neolamprologus leleupi is suited to your hard water, as are the shell dwellers. I will leave it to one of the more knowledgeable rift lake aquarists to comment on these together.
 

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Now that I think about it, I used to have a pair something, something brichardi. Sorry I can't remember more exactly. But what was so fascinating about them was that they spawned several times and the older fry took care of the younger fry just as if they were parents. That absolutely blew me away. They were kind of nondescript but still pretty in their own way and they were dwarf cichlid size. About three inches. I wish I could remember more about them. They did this in a regular 20 gallon high tank.
 
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