my african cichlid wont eat

Discussion in 'Freshwater Fish Disease' started by oosterhoff818, Jan 5, 2013.

  1. oosterhoff818

    oosterhoff818New MemberMember

    hi everyone! iam new here and just seeing if any of you could help me. I have a 40 gallan tank with 7 lake malawi cichlids and spotted bushynose pleco. i do water changes every 2 weeks about a thrid of the water. All my fish are great, seem to be heathly, swimming, eating, loving life. But my sunshine peacock seems unheathly, he is not eating, always just hiding by the rocks, not very active at all. he also is always opening and closeing his mouth,like gulpping,like he is chewing on something. so i just did a water change, thinking that might help. My ammonia is at 0, my nitrite is at 0 and my PH is at 7.9-8.1 range. I am new to the cichlid world and have had my cichlids for 2 months now, all the other fish are great and i love them lots of fun watching them grow and change coulors. oh ya sorry all my fish are youge, there like 1 to 2 or 3 inches right now. hope with this info someone could help me or give me some tips. thank you.
  2. mmolitor87

    mmolitor87Well Known MemberMember

    Is it the only peacock? It could be possible that the peacock is holding. Can you post pictures by chance? :)
  3. Gordinian

    GordinianWell Known MemberMember

    Welcome to fishlore!

    What kind of cichlids do you have? I noticed you said mbuna, but then you said peacock, which don't do well with mbuna. They may be harassing your peacock to the point where he's so stressed he won't eat (and sits in the corners breathing heavily).

    Also, what is the male/female ratio? What are your nitrate readings?
  4. OP

    oosterhoff818New MemberMember

    it is the only peacock, i was told by the guy at the pet shop that i had all male fish cuz thats what i asked for, i dont really want babys. when i look closely i cant see anything in his/her? mouth and there is no like lump or bump under his lip. so, no i dont think its that. and pics, ya ill try post some tomorrow so you can take a look if you like
  5. mmolitor87

    mmolitor87Well Known MemberMember

    Well you really need to keep a male:female ratio of 1:3-4 in order to keep aggression down. In the typical african tank you won't have to worry about fry because they won't survive very long.

    If you continue on this same path you'll have problems as the fish settle in more and mature.
  6. Gordinian

    GordinianWell Known MemberMember

    Peacocks are much less aggressive than mbuna cichlids- he's probably being bullied by everybody else; but a picture would definitely help.

    As said above, cichilds should be stocked one male to at least three females. You might get babies, but that doesn't mean you have to keep them. If you leave them in the tank, the other fish will make fast work of them. You could also strip the mother and feed the eggs to the tank before they start to develope. You'll have much less aggressive fish in the end.

    Also, most fish store employees don't know male from female and will often guess. If you wanted to double check that what you have are actually male, you could post pictures and we can help identify them.
  7. OP

    oosterhoff818New MemberMember

    i have: 1 electric yellow,1 pseudo keyi,1 red top lab hongi,1 mel albino auratus,1 pseudo saulosi,1 sunshine peacock,1 hora reef cyno,1 spotted bushynose pleco

    my nirtrite is 10 ppm

    about them bullying him, i watch them a lot and before the peacock started acting weird he swam around with the rest of them and they all seem to get along pretty good they all chase eachother a bit sometimes, mostly when there hungrgy but nothing serious. its not like he is getting bullyed and them hiding, he just sits there all day long all the other fish ignore him, pretend he is not even there.

    here are some pics of the peacock, this morn he swam up to the filter and has been there ever since. also some other pics.





  8. Gordinian

    GordinianWell Known MemberMember

    I just realized that this is a 40 gallon tank; too small for mbunas, in my opinion. You might want to consider upgrading to at least a 55.

    Hiding behind the filter is normally what cichlids do (IME) when they're being bullied. Just because you never see it, doesn't mean it doesn't happen. At this point, I'd find a new home for the peacock, and attempt an all-male tank (only if you can upgrade your tank).
  9. OP

    oosterhoff818New MemberMember

    ya i plan on upgrading when they get a little bigger this wont be there permanent home. maybe he is being bullied. thanks for your advice dolphinover101.

    he moved from the filter to the top of a rock and was resting on it. as soon he would start to fall over he would then move his fins to stop from falling over. than he moved back to by the filter. i think he likes the filter cuz the suction helps him stay in one spot with less effort on his part.
  10. OP

    oosterhoff818New MemberMember

    here are some pics of the rest of my fish. if any could help in telling me if they are male or female.








  11. JDcichlidlover

    JDcichlidloverWell Known MemberMember

    And you need more fish. upgrade and prepare for the crazy water changes. best way to keep mbuna so they don't destroy each other.
    like everyone else said. at least a 55 gal.
    lots and lots of slate. like reaching halfway up your tank.
    3-1 female to male. preferably 4-1. and you overstock like crazy. 3-4 sets of 5, 15-20 fish that get up to 6 in in length.
    a python (wish I had one... i hate buckets) because your going to be doing 2 pwc a week to keep up with that nitrate
    higher ph, between 8-8.5 (adding driftwood, crushed coral or cuttlebone can help up your ph naturally)
    presto! a gorgeous tank chock full of colorful cichlids :)

    tips on mbuna : do not feed a lot of meat. they are herbavours but like bloodworm and they'll eat feeder fish. but if they get too much protein they can get malwai bloat. :eek:
    they love green beans, zuccini, cucumber.
    if they start acting mean again then rearrange the tank.
  12. Gordinian

    GordinianWell Known MemberMember

    They look pretty big already! I wouldn't wait much longer to get a bigger tank.

    You never posted your nitrate readings, what are they? High nitrates could also be the problem. I'd do a 50% water change just to be safe, even if the nitrates are low.

    Edit: Going from top to bottom, your fish seem to be:

    *probably female
    *? (not sure how to sex those ones!)

    Do you think you could get better pictures of the 2nd, 3rd, and 5th fish's analfins? That's how you tell the gender, and I can't see it very well in those pics.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2013
  13. OP

    oosterhoff818New MemberMember

    thanks guys for all your help. glad you like the photos. and ya ill try get some better pics of those fish for you. there hard to get when there swiming around and they have to be in the right light, its like a race lol
  14. OP

    oosterhoff818New MemberMember

    oh and my nitrate is 0 and my nitrite is 10 ppm
  15. Gordinian

    GordinianWell Known MemberMember

    o_O I hope you mean 0 nitrites, and 10 nitrates??
  16. luke355027355027

    luke355027355027Well Known MemberMember

    Is your tank cycled if not i would really reccomend using tetra safe start. Nitrites are deadly to fish and the fish could have ammonia poisoning