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My first Cichlid Aquarium


AQUAMX

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Hi everyone

As you can see im new here and also new to keeping cichlids. Ive been reading as much as i can and talking to people so hopefully i will be able to start on the right foot.

Having been heavily into plant tanks for a long time it was time for a change. In the back of my mind i had always wanted to keep a cichlid/african display but never crossed the line and actually jumped in. Now that ive finished the tank and just have to make my final decision on tankmates id thought id share a couple of pics of the tank. It will be a species specific tank and house some shell dwellers only if they are suitable to live together.

Please feel free to offer suggestions on tank or tankmates.

Thanks guys

Brad

Ready to start

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Dry scape

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Straight after filling

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Ready for tankmates

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Specs

Tank-4x2x2- Australian aquariums

Filtration- Eheim Pro 3

Lighting-Aquamedic 2X55w T5 ocean light unit

80-100kg white rock

4 bags Seachem meridian sand

P.H-8.2, G.H-15, K.H-7, Ammonia-0, Nitrites-0

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I really like it thumb.gif

Personally I'd have painted the back of the tank. It would have brought out the rock contrast more. Just a solid dark colour would look best.

I hope you don't plan to catch fish out of that sucker laugh.gif

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Lovely tank. Now for a splash of fishy colour and a little bit of algae on the rocks and you will have a very realistic look.

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I like it too smile.gif Nice use of rocks. I agree that it needs a backing sheet/paint and when the algae cuts in it will soften the look. Good stuff.

Andrea smile.gif

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thats a FANTASTIC scape! wish i was that clever, cant wait to see it with resedence!

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Hi Brad,

That is one awesome tank!!! Must have cost u a bundle to get it all setup!! I love the way u have stacked up the rocks to make it looks so natural, like an amphitheatre!!! Have u actually silicon down the rocks on the top or are u just balancing them one on top of the other?

A colony of tropheus would look amazing in this tank. Although u may have a problem with one dominant male taking the entire cave rockface as its territory!! But i think u have enough caves to make it workable.

What steps have u made to prevent waste getting behind the rocks? I know u got a pro 3 but, waste will eventually accumulate back there and u will have a hard time removing all the rock.

Keep the pics coming and keep us posted on what inhabitants u decide to keep in there!

thx

Dave

Ps..Can i ask u how much the Aquamedic T5 lighting cost u?

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Hi guys

I dont know what to say. Definately appreciate the response you have made me feel so welcome. Il try to answer the questions as best i can.

Dave i actually started out with a small crate full of white rock, approx 200kg of it and selected pieces one by one as i built the tank. I chose pieces that locked in and that would not move. All the rockwork was done carefully and before any sand was added. 2 large base pieces were used as the foundation of the rockwork that actually have small caves built in. I was lucky to receive such unique pieces.

The pics do not do the cavework justice. I really focused on making plenty of spaces available as i had not decided on final tankmates at that stage. I beleive i have accomplished my goal, perhaps to much as catching any young would/will be near impossible without a tank teardown.

Behind both rock 'hills' are specially modified filter inlets that are also very large. Both inlets are double pre filtered and are able to be removed and cleaned as required. Although hard to see, only the centre rear of the tank contains sand. The large base pieces actualy go from centre virtualy and cover the rear under the 'hills' completely. Minimal sand/waste should accumulate and i have made sure that all areas can be accessed by 12mm pipe as a suction hose.

The T5 lighting unit was around the $300 mark from memory.

The tank actually has an all black background, probably hard to see in the last pic but one has been added. While looking plain the idea is more of a biotype therefore i want to promote algea growth which im hoping will really break up the look of the tank and make it more visually appealing. In just 2 weeks the tank has started growing some great algea which was what i hoped for with the T5 lighting.

To Chris, jmfly, lepperfish, Andrea, willy, baz, cam, schmuck and Mick thanks so much.

The tankmates at this stage may be Paracyprochromis nigripinnis(maybe start with 6 or so), possibly a pair or 2 of julidochromis(yet to decide,suitability). Possibly a school od cyprochromis for the open water as they tend to enjoy mid water and the edges of rocky habitats.

Im very much in love with Altolamprologus calvus, in particular the species specific to Kapemba. These fish amaze me and some beautiful types are around. I have reservations due to their aggressive nature to juviniles in the wild. So il read a little more. Obviously if i kept these it would be a species only tank.

Although the tank is ready im not wanting to make a rash decision and regret my purchase. Ive spent the last week talking to guys in the industry about whats available to me and what certain types are like in the aquarium.

Im hoping to make my final decision mid week and hopefully have some tankmates withing the next week or so.

Please feel free to make any suggestions on tankmates.

Thanks again guys its very much appreciated.

Brad

Update

IPB Image

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Hi Brad,

Its really comming along and it sounds like youve thought of everything when designing it. Love the updated pic, im very very jealous! youre a genious. cant wait to see further updates

Jonathan :)

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My girlfriends African tank went off a similar idea with the algea. Hers is covered in black algae. I love it. The fish love it too. Your tank looks great, I look forward to the end product.

Adam

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