Stocking Help! Got Rid Of African Cichlids - Have A Grab Bag Of Fish Now!

ExpertBeginnerHA

Hello all! ( TexasDomer and mattgirl I figured out how to post a new thread!)

Going to try to keep this short (hard to do). I did a lot of beginner mistakes, mixed in some semi-aggressive african cichlids in with other community fish, no deaths by killing from the african cichlids, but was warned by lovely members here that I needed to rehome them and then start a new conversation about stocking my tank(s).

I rehomed 6 electric yellow lab/cichlids, a convict and a yellow tail acei. 5 of those yellow cichlids were in my 75 gallon tank (6 month old tank).

I currently also have a 20 gallon running, a 5 gallon QT and two 2.5gallons.
I'm trying to NOT set up more tanks, even though I have two more 20's and another 10 gallon in the closet that I am trying to get rid of actually. So let's pretend I have NO MORE TANKS except these that I list.

My primary focus is the 75 gallon (18"x48" footprint)

*Filters: an emperor 400 (80) dual bio-wheel quad filter media water filter and a topfin submersible rated for 60 gallons at the other end. It's not fancy, just extra filtration.* One filter media case has peat pellets to soften water for certain fish.

*Heaters: Two 100W heaters that can be set between 68-90 and one is 68-93 degrees). Water Currently at 78-79 degrees

*Aeration: 48 inches of bubble bars along the back, one 16" along one side. The decorations with airstones running currently. Two additional airstone decorations are in the tank and able to be set up but it causes too much water turbulence so they are off.

*Substrate/Plants: White fine sand; plastic plants, rock walls with caves and fake coral caves. (rock walls may be able to come out...those were for the cichlids.

pH: 7
Ammonia:0 ppm
Nitrite: 0 ppm
Nitrate: 10-20 ppm

I have gH and kH tests I did for the first time that I can post results of, but I'm new to them so not sure what the results really tells me.

FISH:
1 Mature 3.5-4" Pearl Gourami
1 Juvenie 2" Pearl Gourami
2 Male German Blue Rams (Was 6 and all happy and non-aggressive; suffered massive losses, read below)
(2 unknown gender Electric Blue Rams (Was four, happy, non-aggressive, suffered losses, read below)
1 2-3" Angel (had for 8 months now, very little growth, was told he should hit full size by 12 months but that it seems like he is stunted for some reason).
5 Glow Tetras
5 Zebra Danios
6 Bloodfins
5 Cherry Barbs
2 Cockatoo Dwarf Cichlids, 1 mature, 1 juvenile)
6-8 Cory Cats (2 albino, 1 green, the rest are peppered. Can't always find them all to count but know I counted 7 the other day).
1 Oto (out of 12...one lived...he's fat and happy and I'm not going to mess with getting more Otos again. If he's happy alone, good for him).


I also have a 20 gallon with all the normal set up (can provide details upon request):
1 3.5" Blue Gourami
1 3.5" Opaline Gourami
(mature, 6-8 months, got them together, they used to be in the 75 gallon but I needed to take them out to treat for bloat a 3-4 months ago and I just never put them back).

5 Gallon QT running empty

One 2.5g QT
1 8 month tiger barb left over from ex boyfriend's tank. This one had an open injury and he was going to kill it, so I took it and have been trying to heal a pencil eraser size open wound/ulcer? It's not red anymore. It's white. But I consider it still open and I won't add him to any tank until 100% healed, but really he needs to be homed with more of his type.

One 2.5g with leftover fish from my 1st 10 gallon tank. This tank I am posting on craigslist, fish or tank or a bigger tank to go with them... but for now I have them so I am listing them.
1 long finned beautiful danio
3 white clouds
3 golden white clouds
1 orange molly of some sort (the fish store accidentally caught a baby in a net and just gave it to me, somehow it grew and never got eaten).

OK - So now... my 75 gallon. After having removed the african electric yellow cichlids the entire hierarchy has broken down with my rams and they are fighting each other like crazy and having lost ALL my females now, and 1 Bolvian due to stress (they turned black and died within 1-3 days of getting rid of the yellow cichlids... I know black on them is stress and the kiss of death). So I NEED to reestablish discipline and order in this tank ASAP. The ram losses have all been to injury or stress due to fighting since I rehomed the african cichlids. So this is partially a request to help with stocking and partially a plea for help to reestablish order and calm the aggression. After rehoming or losing a total of 8+11, so 19... there should be NO fighting over territory, yet they want to fight on only one side of the huge tank around the same 12 square inches of space.

I feel like the fact that I've lost my females for the electric blue and german blue rams may have made this even worse. Total testosterone fest between the remaining 2 GBRs and 2 Electric Blue Rams. Assuming I need to get some females in there stat and move rocks and plants?

Anywho...stocking in general,

I would like to make this a ram tank, would love the german blues, electric blues and gold rams, but will be fine with german blue as #1 priority and would really like to keep the electric blues too.

I don't want to get rid of my angel, my cockatoos, nor my two pearl gouramis (or cory cats really). They have all been in there forever and nobody fights. I don't even think my angelfish is aware other fish exist and the Gouramis just swim around without any aggression, maybe occassionally touching other fish with feelers but that's it.

The rest of the fish in the 75 gallon can be moved or rehomed. I'm open to suggestions of colorful fish that will keep well with my rams. In all honestly all the fish have survived and had no issues except when my cycle broke recently. None of those fish have ever fought or had territory wars EXCEPT the RAMS and that was ONLY SINCE SATURDAY, rehoming the cichlids that must have been the peacekeepers.

Keep in mind I have the 20 gallon with 2 gouramis, so other fish may be able to be moved in there.

Ok... ready for recommendations!
 

Aqua Hands

If I may ask are you willing to part with some fish? If so where are you located?
 

ExpertBeginnerHA

If I may ask are you willing to part with some fish? If so where are you located?
I am willing to part with some while I am handling restocking/rehoming so I have the tank and fish I want. I'm in VA. I just rehomed some of them (the electric yellow, convict and aceI cichlids) and am working on rehoming more.
 

Greg F

So If I did the math correctly it look like there are 2 male GB's and 2 mystery EB's left.
Firstly I would re arrange the decor in the tank and try to set up a few more territories. Add rocks , caves , plants , airstones to break up line of sight and see if that helps. Lots of hiding places. If things settle down you can think about adding females again. I would have more females than males.
As for tank mates the only ones that don't really belong are the danios. They would prefer much cooler water. I would also nudge the temp up another 2 degrees for the rams and angels.
 

Aqua Hands

Dang it! No ones every wants to get rd of fish in IN
 

Greg F

Also I would strongly recommend against tiger barbs in a tank with Angels
 

ExpertBeginnerHA

The other odd thing is that, though I cannot sex the electric blue rams, I am 100% sure both remaining German blue rams are both males... yet I swear this male GBR and unknown electric blue ram have paired up! I don’t even know if that’s possibly but with the deaths and regrouping of rams, these two seem to be a team fighting the other two!

Does anyone know how to tell male from female other than venting the electric blue rams?

Again, I think I need to up my rams numbers and ratios back to what they were so the fighting stops or I need a new boss fish that keeps the peace!

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So If I did the math correctly it look like there are 2 male GB's and 2 mystery EB's left.
Firstly I would re arrange the decor in the tank and try to set up a few more territories. Add rocks , caves , plants , airstones to break up line of sight and see if that helps. Lots of hiding places. If things settle down you can think about adding females again. I would have more females than males.
As for tank mates the only ones that don't really belong are the danios. They would prefer much cooler water. I would also nudge the temp up another 2 degrees for the rams and angels.

That's easy enough to do!! Thank you! Will rearrange today! I have more than enough decor in there and in the stand under the tank to move things around or even put in entirely new decor/rocks and plants. Ton's of bubbling decor too.

Would the danios go in the 20 gallon with the 2 gouramis or still prefer cooler water than they are in? They are in 78-79 degrees as well. Digital thermometers on all tanks (though I know they can vary, but I try).
 

Aqua Hands

The other odd thing is that, though I cannot sex the electric blue rams, I am 100% sure both remaining German blue rams are both males... yet I swear this male GBR and unknown electric blue ram have paired up! I don’t even know if that’s possibly but with the deaths and regrouping of rams, these two seem to be a team fighting the other two!

Does anyone know how to tell male from female other than venting the electric blue rams?

Again, I think I need to up my rams numbers and ratios back to what they were so the fighting stops or I need a new boss fish that keeps the peace!

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The GBR is male and the electric is female.
 

ExpertBeginnerHA

Also I would strongly recommend against tiger barbs in a tank with Angels
He's just an unfortunate "leftover" from an ex boyfriend's semi-aggressive tank. He had like 15 of them here at my house along with other semi-aggressive fish, and this one was injured. He was going to kill it, not take it with him, so I took it and have been trying to heal it. It's turned from bright red to all white in the past few months, but I can't seem to get scales to grow over it. I'll take a picture of him. But YES, totally agree, tiger barb is NOT going in any of my tanks, I just want him healthy so I can rehome him to a proper tank or maybe get the ex to take him if he is healthy at that point since he took all of the rest of the fish with him including the tiger barb school.

The GBR is male and the electric is female.
Oh that was easy! Thanks!

Is that normal? For them to cross... hmmm, cross-pair and potentially breed? I've seen crosses of the gold with blue strands in it, but I don't know if they will pair with only their own color group usually or if this pairing is common to see, color doesn't matter?
 

Aqua Hands

Oh that was easy! Thanks!

Is that normal? For them to cross... hmmm, cross-pair and potentially breed? I've seen crosses of the gold with blue strands in it, but I don't know if they will pair with only their own color group usually or if this pairing is common to see, color doesn't matter?
Same fish different names and colors
 

ExpertBeginnerHA

Greg F these are the two electric blues... want to take a guess at gender?

The one on the left is the one you said was female a minute ago ... I think! Haha. It stays by that coral a lot so pretty sure she hasn’t moved.

Greg F Just for clarification of the photos, both have a second tall black spine on dorsal din, both lower fins have black, one has more black on the face but I’ve seen both with a lot of black on the lower face/cheeks. I know some of the color does t show on one picture more. So I wanted to edit to add!

You must be registered to see images
 

Aqua Hands

I think both are females. on on the right could be a very young male.
 

ExpertBeginnerHA

I think both are females. on on the right could be a very young male.
Thanks!!

Any other stocking ideas? I would like to get my count of rams back up as the primary fish, but if everyone else in the tank is fine except the danios, then I guess maybe my stocking is ok?

Any idea how many more German blue and electric blue (and or gold!) rams I could add? Originally I had 6 GBRs and 4 electric blues.

Is part of the aggression and territory fighting now because I took the yellow cichlids out? Do I need to find a “boss” fish again that doesn’t chase or kill them but enforces the peace? I swear there was NEVER fighting when the electric yellow cichlids were in there...somehow it was peaceful.
 

Aqua Hands

Any other stocking ideas? I would like to get my count of rams back up as the primary fish, but if everyone else in the tank is fine except the danios, then I guess maybe my stocking is ok?

Any idea how many more German blue and electric blue (and or gold!) rams I could add? Originally I had 6 GBRs and 4 electric blues.

Is part of the aggression and territory fighting now because I took the yellow cichlids out? Do I need to find a “boss” fish again that doesn’t chase or kill them but enforces the peace? I swear there was NEVER fighting when the electric yellow cichlids were in there...somehow it was peaceful.
Give me a second and I'll whip a possible stocking.

6 GBR (2 Trios) or 9 GBR (3 Trios)
6 Electric Blue Rams (2 Trios)
6 Golden Rams (Can if you only have 2 trios of GBR)
Your Cories (try to get more green if you can.)
2 Cockatoo Dwarve Cichlids
6-12 Blood fins
6-12 Glow Tetras
5-10 Charry Barbs

Opt.
4-6 Pitbull Plecos
6-12 KuhlI Loaches
 

ExpertBeginnerHA

Oh holy cow! That’s a lot more fish than I thought anyone would say I could have in that tank!

Can my two pearl gouramis stay in there? I love them. And my angel?
 

Aqua Hands

Pearls maybe. But, the angel I'm sorry but I don't believe he could stay.
 

Greg F

Greg F these are the two electric blues... want to take a guess at gender?

The one on the left is the one you said was female a minute ago ... I think! Haha. It stays by that coral a lot so pretty sure she hasn’t moved.

Greg F Just for clarification of the photos, both have a second tall black spine on dorsal din, both lower fins have black, one has more black on the face but I’ve seen both with a lot of black on the lower face/cheeks. I know some of the color does t show on one picture more. So I wanted to edit to add!

You must be registered to see images
If I had to guess I would say both Female but honestly that is just an educated guess.

Oh holy cow! That’s a lot more fish than I thought anyone would say I could have in that tank!

Can my two pearl gouramis stay in there? I love them. And my angel?
I personally think the Angel would be fine. Rams and Angels are compatible water wise , and none of the barbs or tetras are notorious fin nippers. I would keep it and see.
 

mattgirl

Yay!!!!! It looks like you are getting some very good advice.

Like I said in your other thread I am not well versed on stocking so will leave it to those that are comfortable with sharing stocking advice.
 

TexasDomer

Hello all! ( TexasDomer and mattgirl I figured out how to post a new thread!)

Going to try to keep this short (hard to do). I did a lot of beginner mistakes, mixed in some semi-aggressive african cichlids in with other community fish, no deaths by killing from the african cichlids, but was warned by lovely members here that I needed to rehome them and then start a new conversation about stocking my tank(s).

I rehomed 6 electric yellow lab/cichlids, a convict and a yellow tail acei. 5 of those yellow cichlids were in my 75 gallon tank (6 month old tank).

Yay! And they found such a nice home, too.

I currently also have a 20 gallon running, a 5 gallon QT and two 2.5gallons.
I'm trying to NOT set up more tanks, even though I have two more 20's and another 10 gallon in the closet that I am trying to get rid of actually. So let's pretend I have NO MORE TANKS except these that I list.

My primary focus is the 75 gallon (18"x48" footprint)

*Filters: an emperor 400 (80) dual bio-wheel quad filter media water filter and a topfin submersible rated for 60 gallons at the other end. It's not fancy, just extra filtration.* One filter media case has peat pellets to soften water for certain fish.

*Heaters: Two 100W heaters that can be set between 68-90 and one is 68-93 degrees). Water Currently at 78-79 degrees

*Aeration: 48 inches of bubble bars along the back, one 16" along one side. The decorations with airstones running currently. Two additional airstone decorations are in the tank and able to be set up but it causes too much water turbulence so they are off.

*Substrate/Plants: White fine sand; plastic plants, rock walls with caves and fake coral caves. (rock walls may be able to come out...those were for the cichlids.

pH: 7
Ammonia:0 ppm
Nitrite: 0 ppm
Nitrate: 10-20 ppm

I have gH and kH tests I did for the first time that I can post results of, but I'm new to them so not sure what the results really tells me.

FISH:
1 Mature 3.5-4" Pearl Gourami
1 Juvenie 2" Pearl Gourami
2 Male German Blue Rams (Was 6 and all happy and non-aggressive; suffered massive losses, read below)
(2 unknown gender Electric Blue Rams (Was four, happy, non-aggressive, suffered losses, read below)
1 2-3" Angel (had for 8 months now, very little growth, was told he should hit full size by 12 months but that it seems like he is stunted for some reason).
5 Glow Tetras
5 Zebra Danios
6 Bloodfins
5 Cherry Barbs
2 Cockatoo Dwarf Cichlids, 1 mature, 1 juvenile)
6-8 Cory Cats (2 albino, 1 green, the rest are peppered. Can't always find them all to count but know I counted 7 the other day).
1 Oto (out of 12...one lived...he's fat and happy and I'm not going to mess with getting more Otos again. If he's happy alone, good for him).

The oto should not be kept alone, and he needs cooler water than the GBR. Danios and bloodfins need cooler water too. Glo tetras need cooler water. Peppered cories need much cooler water, and cories need to be kept in large groups of their own species.

I also have a 20 gallon with all the normal set up (can provide details upon request):
1 3.5" Blue Gourami
1 3.5" Opaline Gourami
(mature, 6-8 months, got them together, they used to be in the 75 gallon but I needed to take them out to treat for bloat a 3-4 months ago and I just never put them back).

I'd rehome them if you want to keep the pearl gouramis in the 75 gal. They are too big to be kept in a 20 gal (and this is an even smaller hex tank, right?), and can't go in the 75 gal if you're keeping the pearls. A hex is much harder to stock than a regular 20 gal, so I'd sell the hex setup and set up one of the 20 gals in your closet instead - still keeping the number of tanks the same!

5 Gallon QT running empty

One 2.5g QT
1 8 month tiger barb left over from ex boyfriend's tank. This one had an open injury and he was going to kill it, so I took it and have been trying to heal a pencil eraser size open wound/ulcer? It's not red anymore. It's white. But I consider it still open and I won't add him to any tank until 100% healed, but really he needs to be homed with more of his type.

I would euthanize him if he's sick. He'll be super stressed kept alone in such a small tank, and it can be hard to heal stressed fish (stress can lower immune function and increase susceptibility to issues). If you won't euthanize him (it's not cruel to euthanize sick and stressed fish), I would rehome him sooner rather than later.

One 2.5g with leftover fish from my 1st 10 gallon tank. This tank I am posting on craigslist, fish or tank or a bigger tank to go with them... but for now I have them so I am listing them.
1 long finned beautiful danio
3 white clouds
3 golden white clouds
1 orange molly of some sort (the fish store accidentally caught a baby in a net and just gave it to me, somehow it grew and never got eaten).

Good, glad you're rehoming these guys (though the single long finned danio can join your other school of danios if you're keeping them).

OK - So now... my 75 gallon. After having removed the african electric yellow cichlids the entire hierarchy has broken down with my rams and they are fighting each other like crazy and having lost ALL my females now, and 1 Bolvian due to stress (they turned black and died within 1-3 days of getting rid of the yellow cichlids... I know black on them is stress and the kiss of death). So I NEED to reestablish discipline and order in this tank ASAP. The ram losses have all been to injury or stress due to fighting since I rehomed the african cichlids. So this is partially a request to help with stocking and partially a plea for help to reestablish order and calm the aggression. After rehoming or losing a total of 8+11, so 19... there should be NO fighting over territory, yet they want to fight on only one side of the huge tank around the same 12 square inches of space.

I feel like the fact that I've lost my females for the electric blue and german blue rams may have made this even worse. Total testosterone fest between the remaining 2 GBRs and 2 Electric Blue Rams. Assuming I need to get some females in there stat and move rocks and plants?

Anywho...stocking in general,

I would like to make this a ram tank, would love the german blues, electric blues and gold rams, but will be fine with german blue as #1 priority and would really like to keep the electric blues too.

I don't want to get rid of my angel, my cockatoos, nor my two pearl gouramis (or cory cats really). They have all been in there forever and nobody fights. I don't even think my angelfish is aware other fish exist and the Gouramis just swim around without any aggression, maybe occassionally touching other fish with feelers but that's it.

I think you can keep the rams, angel, Apistos, and pearl gouramis without issues, if you address the other stocking issues.

The rest of the fish in the 75 gallon can be moved or rehomed. I'm open to suggestions of colorful fish that will keep well with my rams. In all honestly all the fish have survived and had no issues except when my cycle broke recently. None of those fish have ever fought or had territory wars EXCEPT the RAMS and that was ONLY SINCE SATURDAY, rehoming the cichlids that must have been the peacekeepers.

Give them some time to sort out their new hierarchy.

Keep in mind I have the 20 gallon with 2 gouramis, so other fish may be able to be moved in there.

I wouldn't add more fish in there, as the tank is already too small for its inhabitants.

Ok... ready for recommendations!

Green above!

I really would consider rehoming at least the three spot gouramis (blue and opaline) as well. Sell the 20 gal hex setup, then set up one of the 20 gals in your closet. Do you have a 20 gal long? Then you can move most of the incompatible fish in the 75 gal to the 20 gal, and you won't have to rehome many fish. Then you'll have room to add a few more fish (but I don't think you should add more rams at this point since you also want cories and Apistos).

Again, I think I need to up my rams numbers and ratios back to what they were so the fighting stops or I need a new boss fish that keeps the peace!

Again, I wouldn't add any more fish until your stocking issues are sorted out. You can rearrange the tank and add more caves to help with peace, or you can rehome the bully fish.

That's easy enough to do!! Thank you! Will rearrange today! I have more than enough decor in there and in the stand under the tank to move things around or even put in entirely new decor/rocks and plants. Ton's of bubbling decor too.

Would the danios go in the 20 gallon with the 2 gouramis or still prefer cooler water than they are in? They are in 78-79 degrees as well. Digital thermometers on all tanks (though I know they can vary, but I try).

Nope, a hex isn't big enough and the temp is too high for them.

Any other stocking ideas? I would like to get my count of rams back up as the primary fish, but if everyone else in the tank is fine except the danios, then I guess maybe my stocking is ok?

Any idea how many more German blue and electric blue (and or gold!) rams I could add? Originally I had 6 GBRs and 4 electric blues.

Is part of the aggression and territory fighting now because I took the yellow cichlids out? Do I need to find a “boss” fish again that doesn’t chase or kill them but enforces the peace? I swear there was NEVER fighting when the electric yellow cichlids were in there...somehow it was peaceful.

Yes, this is because you took out the big fish. Give them time to sort our new hierarchies. Rearranging the tank decor and adding more caves can help.

I wouldn't have so many rams in this tank since you have other bottom dwellers and other cichlids in the tank. If you want so many rams, I'd rehome the Apistos at the very least.

6 GBR (2 Trios) or 9 GBR (3 Trios)
6 Electric Blue Rams (2 Trios)
6 Golden Rams (Can if you only have 2 trios of GBR)
Your Cories (try to get more green if you can.)
2 Cockatoo Dwarve Cichlids
6-12 Blood fins
6-12 Glow Tetras
5-10 Charry Barbs

Opt.
4-6 Pitbull Plecos
6-12 KuhlI Loaches

There are issues with this stocking, so if you go with this, I'd make many changes first.
 

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