African Cichlid Beginner Looking For Suggestions And Opinions

Sagar77
  • #1
Hi! I love this forum and have already learned a lot form you all! You guys rock! This is a long post but I am looking for help and want to provide as much accurate info as I can.
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I have been in the fish keeping hobby almost 15 years but had a modest 29 gallon freshwater tank all this while. In July (on my birthday!), I decided to up the game and get an African cichlid setup. There are a LOT of firsts:

  1. First large tank (100 gallon, 60"x21"x18")
  2. First time using a used tank and stand. I cleaned and scraped the tank, and refinished the stand. Did not need resealing. Phew!
  3. First time using canister filters (Dual Sunsun filters, each 325 GPH).
  4. First time using LED lighting (I got a full spectrum LED but am a bit disappointed. The red LEDs in the array reflect on the water surface and are quite distracting. On second thought I should have gone for the cheaper blue-white LED light)
  5. First time using sand substrate (used 100lbs Pool Flilter Sand, makes about 3 inch bed. Cleaning the sand took forever!)
  6. First time Cichlids.... These are a fun and amazing variety. My tank is lightly stocked for now, and I am thinking of adding 5 to 7 more peacocks to it. Currently:
    1. Red zebra (male)
    2. Yellow labs (3)
    3. KenyI (blue female)
    4. Dogtooth cichlid (cynotilapia, male)
    5. Z Rock Hap (probably hybrid, male)
    6. Blue Peacock (probably hybrid, male)
    7. Sunshine Peacock, male
    8. Red fin hap (big 7 inch male, shy)
    9. Only odd one out: Rainbow shark (l've always loved this one)
Some more info: The airpump is a Fluval q1 with a 60" air curtain running along the back of the tank. I feed them Omega one sinking cichlid pellets using an Eheim autofeeder. However, I am thinking of switching to a flake food because I feel it does not dirty the sand substrate, works better with a feeding ring and is easier to scoop us uneaten food, if any.

Any, and I mean ANY, suggestions, guidance, opinions (and criticisms) are welcome. I am an eager learner trying to get help from the the expert and experienced old timers in the hobby. Below are few pics of my tank and stock. The 2 full-size pics below are front and side view of the tank. The fish pics are in the thumbnail.

According to you: What have I done right? What have I screwed up (which is inevitable)? Where is there a room for improvement? Will love to hear from you!


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AquaticJ
  • #2
Don’t switch to a flake food, they’re messier and leak nutrients. Otherwise I’d say you’re doing pretty well!
 
Smalltownfishfriend
  • #3
Welcome to fish lore.. you have a great looking tank.. I always wanted an African cichlid tank like that!!
 
aae0130
  • #4
Your aquascape is subtle and attractive. Wish my tank was that pretty......

How long has it been running?
 
Sagar77
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
Aae0130, thanks! I am far from being a natural at aquascaping so I deduced to keep it simple. A few rocks, few artificial Texas holey rock (I have real ones too but they are very heavy and I was concerned about that) and a couple of artificial plants. That's it. I think the rock formation gives it a special look. I also tried to choose a background that looks like am extension of the rock formation. Any other ideas?

The tank has been running for about 2 months now, cycled for a little over a month.

Thanks for the encouragement. It means a lot to a beginner like me.
 
AquaticJ
  • #6
Agreed, your tank looks very aesthetically pleasing. I unfortunately am horrible at aquascaping, so I have to get extra beautiful fish lol.

This is my Peacock that’s often mixed up with your new Hap.

Be careful, as they grow you may run into aggression problems since you have Peacocks, Mbunas, and Haps all together.
 

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Sagar77
  • Thread Starter
  • #7
AquaticJ, that is a beautiful fish! Lucky you! What is it and, if I may ask, how much did you pay for it?
 
AquaticJ
  • #8
AquaticJ, that is a beautiful fish! Lucky you! What is it and, if I may ask, how much did you pay for it?
Its a male Ngara Flametail. I got a male and female of around 4 inches for $35. Now of course this was priced based mostly on color, which is fantastic and hard to find.

I just realized I have the same background you have on another tank. Lol
 

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