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Member Spotlight on Allie

Online Aquarium Fish Magazine | Member Spotlight - Allie


Hi my name is Allie. I am 36 yrs old, live in Dartmouth, NS Canada with my boyfriend and our 4 cats. My boyfriend and I have been in the hobby 2 years. We wanted to share a hobby, and this is perfect since we both love fish and animals in general.

We started out with a 5 gallon with 3 goldfish for our cats to have "kitty TV". But then we decided we wanted more. I got a betta and a betta kit.

We did everything wrong. I did a lot of research on tropical fish and realized my poor fishies weren't in the proper tanks. I fell in love with cichlids and my boyfriend liked piranha. So we looked around for second hand stuff and haven't been without at least 3 tanks running.

We've kept every species of fish possible just about. African and American cichlids dwarf and large. Arowana par fish, archers, scats, Datnoids, betta, goldfish, plecos, tetra. You name it, I am sure we have kept it at one point or another. We have many sizes of tanks too. My first big tank was a 42 gallon squat with african cichlids.

I love this hobby for many reasons. Learning about fish is very interesting and fun to me. I like sharing my experiences with others and learning from theirs. My favorite part of fish keeping is watching baby fish grow up into beautiful healthy fish. It so cool watching fish parent and the babies grow. I really love creating their little world for them.

My least favorite part is battling fish diseases. I cannot keep betta splendens. I have had 11 of them in the past 2 years. 7 which died of diseases. Some I traded. I have been dealing with fin rot for 3.5 months... so I am still learning. Which is the great thing about being in the hobby is that the learning is never ending.

My advice is research any fish before gettting even a tank. Google it! If you can afford and have the space for large or a lot of tanks start with a large tank and cycle the heck out of it. Then choose your fish.

Future Plans

Our future plans is to open our own tropical fish store. Breeding our own fish. My boyfriend is taking business mangement so he knows the business aspect too. We also have a lot of people interested in being a part of the store.

We have starting purchasing African cichlids to grow out for breeding groups. We want to have the best qualtity fish. We've been doing lots of water changes. We are feeding them a proper diet and noticing a great color difference in the ones we purchased over the past 2 months. We may only have 2 years experience in the hobby, but I have learned and read a lot about keeping fish.


The best way to learn is through experience. So it's a good thing that fish keeping is so fun and interesting. We've met many people into the hobby through buying and selling. I would like to thank all of those people who didn't give us a hard time or use us in any way, and became our fish friends. They know who they are. My boyfriend has made a friend for life because of this hobby. I would like to also thank all of the members on FishLore who have helped me out with my Betta issues. Personally I would like to thank my boyfriend, Tyrone for spending most of the money on fish and supplies.

Best Book

Malawi Cichlids: in their natural habitat 3rd Edition. 4th Edition out now or soon. This book helped me identify a lot cichlids. The Malawi Bible.


120 gallon Mixed African Cichlids
  • 6 ft aquarium, and homemade wooden stand/canopy
  • Kept at 80 %C pH 8
  • Astro 2212 filter with spraybar attachment
  • 802 power head
  • Substrate: silica sand, crushed coral, river rocks
  • Rock from the atlantic ocean for caves.
  • Set up over a year now.

100 gallon tall Angelfish, Datnoids, Fancy Plecos and Diamond Tetra

  • 3 feet Long by 2.5 feet High
  • Kept 80 %C pH 7.4
  • Fluval 404
  • Substrate: Silica sand and aquarium gravel mixed
  • Plants: Nesaea pedicellata, Java fern/Microsorum pteropus, Tropic sunset/Hygrophila polysperma 'Rosanervig', Rotala rotundifolia, Anubias Nana
  • Set up 4 months

33 gallon African Cichlid Fry

  • Aqua Clear mini and Aqua Clear300
  • Kept 80 %C pH 7
  • Set up 1 month

10 gallon Betta Spelendens Tank

  • Divided male and female
  • No filter, just a heater
  • Set up for 4 months


  • Malawi African cichlids: Red Top Zebra, Greyshakei, Red/Blue Zebra, Cobalt Zebra, Kenyi, Rusty, Blue Dolphin, Yellow Labs, Blue Haps, Peacocks, Msobo, Acei, Red Fin Borelyi
  • Tanganyika African Cichlids: Burundi Frontosa, Yellow/Gold Calvus - Feed Meat and vegie flakes, HBH African Attack pellets 3 times a day. We've kept african cichlids off and on for 2 years and this bunch we've had for around a month or so.
  • Plecos: Common pleco we had for 1 month and had all these for well over a year now: Blue Panaque, Blue Phantom, Clown, Snowball - had for 6 months, Bristlenose male juvenile and female adult
  • Other: Betta: Male veil tail and Female Double Ray Crown tail Had for 3 months
  • Angelfish 10 months
  • Diamond Tetra
  • Datnoids: 6 months
  • Indonesian Tiger, Wide Bar and Silver
  • Female Convict 2 weeks

Fish and Aquarium Pictures

10 gallon aquarium 33 gallon aquarium 100 gallon african cichlid tank 120 gallon african cichlid aquarium Angelfish Betta Black Ghost Knife fish Baby Bristlenose Pleco Burundi Frontosa Cichlid Datnoids Female Angelfish Kribensis Pair Snowball Pleco

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