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New Cichlid tank setup

A wee bit of work yet to do...
Wanting a low light/low maintenance/Non CO2 setup

Still have more java fern, java moss, crypts, anubias, phoenix moss to add
Hoping to put some German or Bolivian blue rams in it....

Standard 24" T8 hood w/ daylight bulb.
Seachem Flourite substrate
Aqueon Pro 150w heater
Emperor 280 power filter (will be replaced with an Aqua Clear 50, Emperor is too noisy for my taste)


Thanks for looking,

Got Rams, want heli?
Hollar at me....

Update: There is not enough clearance for the Aquaclear 50 with the background, Emperor it is for a while I guess:p
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German Rams are such beautiful fish* nowadays they do well in hard water. beautiful aqua scape :)
Colors (substrate/background/rock) dont blend like i had hoped but so far I'm pleased...
The rams should love it I hope.

and yes, IMHO German Rams are about as nice as FW gets... will be my first experience with them.
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Are you adding any Anubias? or just the Java Fern? I think it looks great! if you wanted it to blend more river stones would of been the choice. I've had German Rams I've always kept a pair on my freshwater. Only because I love the charming interaction between the pair. They've always laid eggs and they've hatched under hard water. They do a pretty good job at keeping the babies safe, but I never had the space for keep up so only two the most made it to juvenile. but during breeding time they terrorize the rest of the fish. So if you plan on having other fish just remember that.
Darwin would be pleased!

Nice setup, I've always wanted to do a cichlid tank with a sailfin dragon setup on top, so they could swim with teh fishies.

Really love cichlids:


But fishkeeping is certainly not in mah blood.

Good luck!
0w, and if you want to add a school of fish, Rummy nose to me are great, and won't take too much focus from the rams :)
This was my tank in which I housed a pair of rams. I toke it down when I bought my new house.
I have added a couple Anubias nana since that pic was taken....
Ive got plenty of java moss and java fern in a couple planted 10g's I have... so no shortage of them.

I've been going back and forth with deciding on Germans or Bolivians....

Water conditions from tap are
pH 7.2
dKH 2.5
dGH 8.0 (I may have my dKH and dGH values backwards, but I think that is right)
I think that since dGH is 8, that is the reference value I should use.... not really sure though.
TDS 200ppm

I want to avoid having to modify/buffer the water in any way.

Thanks peat, I like aquariums as long as they are low maintenance..... I've been down the high maint road and dont wish to return LOL
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  • #10
The key with water is, CONSTANT, specially with fish such as Rams and discus. your water seems fine to me. I've never kept bolivians I personally think German Rams are prettier? lol, I've never try to change my water chemically. all I do is make sure that the water I replenish is the same temperature as the one in the tank. and when I get rams or discus I float the bag for 15 mins then i poke two wholes with a needle in the bag so that the PH acclimates slowly. I only did this for rams, cardinals, and discus, which are a lil sensitive. and thank you for the compliments :)
  • #12
Although I haven't kept either, I prefer Bolvians. They're colors are subtle but very pretty. otherwise, my other favorite dwarf cichlid is apistogramma nijsseni.
  • #13
Def!!! :) females are usually smaller and if they're males present in the tank they will have swollen pink bellies :) males will always be show offs.
  • #16
sir, i wish i stumbled on this thread, as i would have definitely added in my two cents...
have you seen the electric blue rams? they're definitely not wild stock, but they definitely give off a wicked stunning impression.

im also a sucker for apistos. apistogramma cacatuoides comes in a whole slew of colors so chose a color morph that fits you best. have fun! looking forward to your updates!
  • #17
Congrats Av8tor! I can't wait to see pictures!!
  • #18
I got the rams!!

They are settling in nicely, will try to get a nice pic tomorrow.... they were pretty stressed from the journey but in very nice shape.
Seller sent one extra too :)

  • #20
Hey, I thought it was a _cichlid_ tank. I see zebra danio and corydoras catfish there!

.... I want my money back!