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Tropheus Tank


Bruce

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In the next couple of months I want to setup my first Tropheus tank. This is where I need the help of all you tropheus nuts :p I am limited to a standard 4ft tank for size because of room. This is my plan for things, can you point me in the right direction.

Filter:

Choice 1

Choice 2

Choice 3

Choice 4 (I already have 2 of these lying around)

Heater:

Choice 1

Choice 2

Lighting:

Choice 1 (Already have one but a 4ft version)

Substrate:

Sand?

Rock:

Sandstone?

Plants:

Java fern attached to rock?

Tropheus: (one type)

10x Illangi or

10x Golden Kazumbas or

10x Moliro

From filter, fish and heater please choose one and state why you chose it. Thanks a lot.

Bruce

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In the next couple of months I want to setup my first Tropheus tank. This is where I need the help of all you tropheus nuts :p I am limited to a standard 4ft tank for size because of room. This is my plan for things, can you point me in the right direction.

Filter:

Choice 1

Choice 2

Choice 3

Choice 4 (I already have 2 of these lying around)

Heater:

Choice 1

Choice 2

Lighting:

Choice 1 (Already have one but a 4ft version)

Substrate:

Sand?

Rock:

Sandstone?

Plants:

Java fern attached to rock?

Tropheus: (one type)

10x Illangi or

10x Golden Kazumbas or

10x Moliro

From filter, fish and heater please choose one and state why you chose it. Thanks a lot.

Bruce

Hate to be the first to tell ya mate - but your tank is way too smalll for all those tropheus. I have a tropheus tank also 4 ft with 3 adult pairs (duboise, chimbi and bemba) and it is too small - and I am currently looking for a 6 ft for them. Tropheus are fast, active fish and have plenty of attitude - this means they need plenty of room to move away from aggression that may (and will) come their way. Cichlid forum has a lot of information on keeping these fantastic fish. I would go with the cannister filter (choice 1) - it is quiet, and works well in my tank. Good luck with it all - but start with a 6 footer for these fish :)

Sean

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If you read the last paragraph you will see that Bruce only wants one of the species not all 3 :)

Whilst not ideal, a standard 4' is okay for 10 fry-juveniles but a larger tank should be on the agenda as soon as you are able to afford it.

Out of necessity I have had 40 T adults housed for a while in a 4x2 with no real dramas.

Cheers

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I really dont think any one of those filters will do the job. For a standard four foot tank I would be using a canister rated at around 1500LPH. This is ofcorse my opinion.

A heater is a heater. I wont recommend a heater, they all have their good and bad points.

Same goes for the light

In my opinion you will need to keep alot more then 10 tropheus in a tank that size to make it work. I havent kept any of those tropheus, maybe moliroman could give you some tips (I am sure he will :lol3: ). I think a 4x2x2 would be a better choice for a tank but I have seen Tropheus kept in a standard four footer and they have done well.

Java fern can be kept with tropheus but I found that it tends to die off becuase of the water hardness.

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well moliroman said to me that i could get away with a few juvies in a 4ft tank.but he also said that everyone would disagree with that too.

im going to give it a shot soon and we'll see how it goes.cant wait to see your's going bruce!!

(by the way if you want a 1500lph i know a good LFS to get them from when you come down)

and could someone check the tropheus picture thread i have answered some questions and i wanted top know if they would be ok?

thanks

jamie :)

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G'day Bruce,

Here's my take on things, which will be similar to Aline and Josh who know lots.

Tank- a standard 4 foot tank can work but it isn't ideal. I personally wouldn't try it but others have with success. A 4x2x2 by the way is ideal for a colony, 5 and 6 foot even better.

Filter- I agree with Josh, I wouldn't use any of them. The only canister I will use from now on is Eheim. I know you put down a 2213 but it isn't big enough. I would go with 2 Eheim 2217s or 1 2217 and an Aquaclear 500.

Heater and Light- personal choice.

Rocks- personal choice.

Plants- like Josh I have tried plants in high alkaline water and failed miserably.

Fish- unless you can be sure of sex ratios, 10 fish will more than likely fail rather than succeed. A colony of 2 males and 8 females should be fine but you will only be able to achieve this if you buy adults. If you are buying juveniles I would shoot for atleast 15.

There you go Bruce, our comments might be a bit harsh but hey, better you find out before you start.

One final comment, I definitely think you should only get a colony if you are committed to getting a bigger tank later on. Remember, only my advice though, I could be wrong.

Good luck Bruce, and don't be disheartened, keep asking questions, I'm sure everything can be worked out :).

Jamie.

a few juvies in a 4ft tank

This may work while they are juvies but in my opinion this combination when they reach adulthood could lead to disaster.

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Hi Bruce,

Firstly i want to apologise for causing all this tropheus euphoria on this forum. I think i may have gone a bit overboard and don't want to be blamed if anything goes wrong due to my advice or opinions!!! :no::thumb

Now, i think the boundaries of Tropheus keeping are no longer clear cut, many people have different opinions about what is the minimum tank size and what is the minimum number u can keep safely in a tank. All i can say is ask yourself what u want out of these amazing fish.....do u want them to breed and be happy, then go for the biggest tank and the most massive colony u can afford. But i think the key here is u have already commited yourself to a standard 4 foot and your question is can it be done....and i say it can! But u will need to work very hard to keep these guys happy.

Jamie and i have gone way overboard with filtration....here is an example - i have 11 wildcaught adult golden kazumba in a 5 foot aquaone tank --> 4 Eheim pro II 2028, 1 Eheim 2217, 1 overhead trickle filter 1600lph, 16W UV clarifier and an Aquamedic sulphur/hydrocarbon nitrate filter (suitable for aquariums up to 1000L. I don't check my nitrates but i think they should be low. But i also do 75% water changes every 2 weeks, which i think is the key to keeping your Ts healthy ( u can do weekly 50% changes instead). I think u should aim to get enough filtration to filter the water volume at least 8-10 times per hour. So the recommendations of a 1500Lph filter or 2 1000lph cannister or as Jamie suggested a Aquaclear + cannister would be sufficient.

Go for a colony of juveniles ie, 3-5cm - 8-12 and let them grow together. Weed out the trouble makers on the way (so maybe getting 15 is a good idea to allow for this). Just hope that u don't get too many aggressive males in the colony.

Arrange the rocks so that there are 2 distinct rockpiles for them to take cover or claim as territory. I usually use limestone rock but i have recently experimented with sandstone and i think it looks great and brings out the colours of my Ts.

Whatever tropheus variant u choose depends entirely on what u like the look of. Obviously, don't go for the notoriously more aggressive variants like th sp. black or brichardis.

Keep us posted on what u decide on and don't hesitate to ask more questions.

hth

Dave

Ps. A pair of gobies would look great in there as well!!! ;)

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Thanks for all your help and comments guys. I would go for a bigger tank but I am very limited on space and also on money. I would be happy to go for a bigger filter to keep them happy. Fish wise I forgot to add I also REALLY like Ikola's and K2's, are they easily available and are they aggressive?

Dave- I also think a pair of gobies would go great in there :p That's why I will probably be taking half of yours, a pair in each tank :)

Bruce

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No problems Bruce!!!

I would encourage u to give it a go since u will never know until u try it once how rewarding it is to keep tropheus!!!!

There is no better time to get into tropheus with the outrageously low prices that a lot of breeders are offering for their fry....so take advantage of it while it lasts!!!

I think Ben/CThompson/Jim has ikolas. Aline has Kirizas.

I only have 8 eretmodus fry mate and there is a lot of interest so i will wait and see who i will sell them to. But u r on the top of the list.

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I think Ben/CThompson/Jim has ikolas. Aline has Kirizas.

Are they one of the more expensive tropheus varients?

I only have 8 eretmodus fry mate and there is a lot of interest so i will wait and see who i will sell them to. But u r on the top of the list.

I will only take as much as there is to go around. Don't wanna be greedy :)

Bruce

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I love these tropheus posts they bring out a huge array of ideas from many different people that have all had success and failures doingthe same and opposite things. I nt heend you can aim for what would be really great, but as mentioned cash is a constrant, i try to go 6x2x2 for all my colonies, but also have had luck with smaller tanks, with my adult chipimbi i actually had more luck when moved from a 6x18x18 to a 4x18x18, they bred, and calmed down considerabley.

I would think 10-15 of either varient would be ok in a 4x18x20h( thats a standard size isnt it) have a rock pile at either end (your choice of rocks ) and a few larger single rocks in the middle to break up the open space, so hey can hide from view if needed.

filter 1200lph would be the minimum i would go, here i would probably drop in a sponge bubbler and an internal rated at 1500-2000lph. watch for dead spots and trapped food this is bad. a canister might be better for a display tank but. or a combo of these. the weekly 30%water changes help with keeping water spotless

lighting one 4 foot tube with a grow lux bulb so algae will grow and give them something else to do instead of chase each other, heater.as long as it works, and is reliable

choose a substrate and rock combo that matches, and compliments the fish,

as for salts etc that have been mentioned i dont use them, probably not quite as succsesfull as others but still the fish are happy and there is maybe 4-6 mouthfulls here as i type, its enought to make me happy, and the fish look and play nice, so cant be tooo much wrong. i have had much better results now i have stopped using salts and buffers, almost all my tanks sit at pH of 8.0-8.2 , hardness umm gh of 100, and kH of 180-250.

good luck.

really i have found different colonies respond different to different things

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I think standard 4fter is 4'x14"x20" (LWH). I will use Seachem buffers. I use it on my current tang tanks and I have happy healthy fish. Doesn't algae grow with any light? My big tank has algae and that has powerglo tubes. Although Dave said not to choose a black varient I really like Cherry Spots and kinda had my heart set on them :wub How many of them would suit that tank? 15?

Bruce

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A standard 4' tank is too small. Why do I say that? The reason is simple - you can't guarantee success. Now that doesn’t mean a 4 by 2 by 2 will guarantee success either, but the difference between these two sizes can be huge, though it takes up little more of a footprint.

Now Tropheus in my opinion are easy fish to keep, provided you take care of a few basic requirements. One is to have enough fish numbers to spread the aggression, in my book I would only recommend starting with 15. And the other is a decient minimum tank size.

Remember you need to cater for the ADULT size of these fish, not the size you purchase them at.

You might get away with ten, but then... you might not, 10 really is a minimum number you will see people get away with (but then you get people who have success with two girls and a boy). If you get a group of species black (K1 or K2 you mentioned), you are interested in the most aggressive Tropheus group, so in a four footer you'll have even less chance of success.

Now I'm not saying it can't be done, but it would greatly increase your chances if you had experience with Tropheus, Aline is doing it in a 4’, she has experience, and if worse came to worse she has enough tanks to move them elsewhere. I assume you can't do this.

There are two things you need to consider here, first and foremost, is the well being of the fish, and second is the well being of the fish. If you can't afford as a minimum a 4 by 2 by 2, or haven't got the room for a tank of this size, you are not in the position to tackle these fantastic fish.

These fish can be absolute terrors on a sub dominate targeted fish. And believe me, you will be sourly stressed if you run into issues, and if the issue is tank size related, you'll be up the proverbial creek without a paddle.

Craig

Craig

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Ok....now I'm confused. I've got different people with different views, some saying its ok and some not??? I do have a large tang tank I can move them to incase of problems or if it doesn't work out.

Bruce

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Bruce...trust us, u don't want to go with bulu points as your first tropheus. I know they look cool but they are also very aggressive. Aline kept hers in a 4 foot but she had to remove a lot of the casualties into other tanks once i sold her my dominant Bulu rightly given the nickname "king Bulu"!!!!

I think u will just have to decide for yourself whether u want to take the plunge or not. We can not guarantee success but we can only give u advice. Things might be ok for a while, but down the track your situation may have changed and u might decide to get rid of your Tangs and move the Ts into the larger tank?

Anyway, if u really want them, i say go for it but do it with caution and be prepared cope with any problems.

R u more confused now?

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Ok....now I'm confused. I've got different people with different views, some saying its ok and some not??? I do have a large tang tank I can move them to incase of problems or if it doesn't work out.

Bruce

Im pretty sure if problems do occur with the tropheus in the standard 4fter, and they must be moved out of the tank placing them in a larger tank with other inhabitants will be even worse. From memory you have multies breeding in that other tank of yours hence they could be the key to the next problem. Im talking from past experience here when i say you should slow down and take your time before taking the big leap into a lovely group of fish such as tropheus which need much time and dedication. I know a 55page post full of pics of these lovely guys can be hard to resist, but for the sake of you, your wallet, and these fish you should ease up and maybe get them after a while..

cheers; Richard

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Bruce, mate I know you're keen. That's a good thing, as long as you don't decide something rash. What I want to talk about now is different variants. Thinking of different variants isn't going to solve the issue in my opinion. Like I and others have said, Tropheus in a standard 4 footer is risky. Species black Ts are more aggressive but ALL Tropheus can be and are aggressive. My comments about Ts being risky in a 4 footer stands for all Tropheus.

My opinion is still that long term I would not keep Tropheus in a standard 4 footer.

This isn't an attack on you buddy, it's just my views on the subject. Maybe I wasn't as clear as I should have been the first time I posted. I didn't want to sound too harsh. Are you sure you can't get a bigger tank or even switch the Tangs into a 4 footer and put the Ts into the bigger tank? This of course depends on how big the Tang tank is and how heavily stocked it is, you don't want your Tangs to get a raw deal out of this.

Hope your ok with this, just maybe have some think time.

Jamie.

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The tangs defianately need the big tank(featherfins etc). I would want to keep them happy and not wanna make them unhappy just for my personal gain. Maybe it's best that I don't go down this road at this time :( I think I will still get the 4ft tank though. I've some other very nice tangs lined up for it :)

Bruce

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Featherfins, no you don't want to down size those guys. I think you have made the mature choice to let this idea go for a while. If you really want those Ts, I'm sure one day you'll get 'em and do it really well :).

Jamie.

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Hi Bruce,

Looks like u have made your decision....i was looking forward to welcoming another member to the tropheus club but i guess u r already in it since u have shown interest!!! :thumb

R u sure u can't get a 4 by 2? U could stop going out for a month and save the money for it? Or is there not enough room to fit one of these?

I would be interested to hear from people who have had success with Tropheus tanks that are smaller than the "recommended" size....and i mean adult colonies!!! And i want to hear about fry production, frequency of bloat, maintenance regimes, etc.

Anyway, don't feel depressed about not getting to start your first T tank....if u want it enough u will get one eventually and we will be waiting to hear from u and answer any questions!

Good luck with the tangs!

Dave

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It's because of the room unfortunately :( On a better note, I have some beautiful tangs planned for the new tank :lol4:

Bruce

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G'day Bruce

Tropheus can be difficult but they are not impossible. even in a standard 4 foot tank.

I would agree with the filter choice of an Aquaclear 500 or a 2217, both would be better but not absolutely required. We have Tropheus colonies in tanks with no more than side drop filtration :8

Water changes should occur every week and be around 40%.

As to what you put in your tank, I would suggest you start with Tropheus duboisi. They are generally well behaved and are beautiful as well :thumb

I would stongly recommend you stay away from the Bulus and also the K2's. I love them but boy do they cause each other some problems :blink

I am not saying that what I am able to do can be replicated, but you at least have a chance if you start with say 14 duboisi. I am assuming that you will lose say 2 - 3 fish along the way.

Unlike some of the others I do not agree with the two rock piles idea. (This technique is normally used for the likes of the bulus and wild caught nkondes) For me these guys will be fine in a tank that has rocks that extend along the whole of the back of the tank. You can use whatever you like along the back, even PVC pipe if $$$ are an issue.

PS. My mum also has Moops in a standard 4foot that are doing well with Aquaclear 300 and two ice cream filters. Rocks and plants along the back of the tank and all breeding well.

Lots of people say lots of things about tropheus, they can be very difficult but I believe that if you keep their water at an excellent level and feed them correctly the fish (read here... duboisi) will take care of themselves.

Final thought: a bigger tank would make your life and the fishes lives, a lot easier but sometimes if we try we can get away with some amazing things.

Best of luck

Matthew

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