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Changing to Malawi Cichlids
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Blair
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Joined: 19 Jan 2005
Location: West Calder, Scotland

PostPosted: 2006.12.23(Sat)6:30    Post subject: Changing to Malawi Cichlids Reply with quote

Hi all, I'm thinking of changing to Malawis as there is a new fish shop opened up in my town, and the guy who owns it keeps Malawis. They have some really nice fish in the shop and offered me the advantage of being able to order any fish in, because I'm a fish nut. He said that the substrate should be coral sand, which I have. Is this true?
Next, what kind of rocks should I have/ what kind of aqua scape? My other LFS has these nice rocks, but then again the new LFS can order anything in.
Finally, what fish should I keep? Me asking this is similar to feeling around in the dark trying to find the toilet, as I have no idea what to keep or what they are called. As I said before, the guy knows his stuff about Malawis and he is only a 5 minute walk from my house, so I can ask him if their is any problems.

Blair

P.S: If anyone was wondering why I would like Malawis, it s because plants haven't worked out for me. And because of the new LFS.

EDIT; The tank is a Juwel Rio 240
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Gary
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Joined: 17 Apr 2006
Location: North Carolina

PostPosted: 2006.12.25(Mon)13:00    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Blair. I have only kept Malawis for a year now, but I have 30 of them in a 475 liter. There are so many different kinds to choose from that it is hard to stop buying them once you start. If you want to just do a couple of colors or many there are a lot of options. I like to have at least two females to every male. If you want a more peaceful tank you can try Labiodochromis caerleus (Yellow Labs) and Pseudotropheus Acei. (Dark purple with a yellow or white tail. In your size tank you could have 6 or 7 of each. If you want more kinds then try 3 or four of each. You could try 4 different kinds like 3 labs, 3 Acie, 3 Red zebra(an orange color), white socolfi (an albino version of the blue socolofi). That would give you a nice range of color(yellow,purple,orange and white). These are all Mbuna cichlids and will grow to about 4 or 5 inches or 10 to 13 cm. All cichlids are pretty roudy but some are a lot more than others.

There are also other kinds of fish from Malawi that are called Haps and Peacocks. With these only the males tend to have nice color while the females are very drab colored fish. (Don't have much color) I have some of each in my tank but I like the Mbuna the best. Both males and females have nice color.

Some kinds that are more aggressive are Pseudotropheus crabro, Melanochromis auratus and Pseudotropheus Lombardoi. These are all very common in pet stores. The Lombardoi male is very aggressive, but the blue and black striped females are not that aggressive and make good tank mates. I know because I have two females in my tank as well as a male.

An important thing to remember with Mbuna is to give frequent water changes and make sure you provide a diet with fish foods that contain mostly vegetable matter like spiralina and such. I feed mine zuccini slices as well.

As far as decorations for your tank, you can use anything you want except for live plants. And coral sand is fine for the bottom of the tank. You could also use crushed coral, but the coral sand would be even better. Also it is a good thing to over filter your tank. I have two emperor 400's on my tank. I like them because they have both bio wheels and containers that I put carbon in to help keep the water clean as well as the filters. If you have any more questions I'll try to help as best I can.
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Blair
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Joined: 19 Jan 2005
Location: West Calder, Scotland

PostPosted: 2006.12.25(Mon)15:03    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also heard somewhere that you have to ratio the sexes so they won't fight or something? I'm not sure on that one but thanks for your crash course on Malawi Cichlids. My local LFS has these Yellow Labs in store, but I don't know about the other kind of peaceful ones. He can get them in though but I'll have to write it down somewhere so I don't forget! OK stocking plan as of now:

6x Labiodochromis caerleus
6x Pseudotropheus Acei

And rocks as decor. Thanks again for replying, I was just about to bump it!

Blair
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Gary
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Joined: 17 Apr 2006
Location: North Carolina

PostPosted: 2006.12.25(Mon)18:48    Post subject: Reply with quote

Blair wrote:
I also heard somewhere that you have to ratio the sexes so they won't fight or something? I'm not sure on that one but thanks for your crash course on Malawi Cichlids. My local LFS has these Yellow Labs in store, but I don't know about the other kind of peaceful ones. He can get them in though but I'll have to write it down somewhere so I don't forget! OK stocking plan as of now:

6x Labiodochromis caerleus
6x Pseudotropheus Acei

And rocks as decor. Thanks again for replying, I was just about to bump it!

Blair


The reasons for having more females than males are a breeding male will constantly harass a single female. He can stress her to the point of death. If there is more than one female the male will spread his harrassment around.

One other thing on the Acie. They are the only Mbuna that I have seen so far that will school together. They are very active and swim all over the tank, where most Mbuna tend to hang out at the bottom half of the tank.
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Blair
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Joined: 19 Jan 2005
Location: West Calder, Scotland

PostPosted: 2006.12.26(Tue)11:08    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the tips, I should be clearing out the current inhabitants soon. I'm going to my LFS tomorrow so I'll see him about the acie.

Thanks again,

Blair
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