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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey everyone!!!!! VIDEO UPLOADED SEE BOTTOM

As my African addiction grows. :) I've been able to convince a buddy to switch his boring tank over to a fast action always starving African tank. :) My buddy has seen my tanks and sits right beside my grow out tank at work. He's sees my work fish more than I do. Over the past few months he has watched some of my baby Africans grow. He's been amazed on their color and beauty. So he asked for my help once again to switch his tank around. I just enjoy working on fish tanks. So I figured why not. Free dinner for me.

He has a 55g. Standard size. Lighting Oddysea 3 bulb T5ho. Fluval 106, Aquaclear HOB? (big). Fluval is full of biomedia. That will be it's main purpose. The HOB has filter pad and Floss. It will be the polisher. Tank has a background. Not my style but its his tank :)

My friend told me what look he was after. We went out and bought rocks and aragonite. Fish stocking was a challenge because he really likes the look of Peacocks and Haps. So its been hard trying to convince him to go Mbuna but he knows, I know best, so he said do whatever I want. My favorite :) So I bought 8 Rusty Cichlids, 8 Blue Zebras, I bought 6 or 7 other Mbunas that I saw at LFS for cheap to start him off while he waited for Fish from Dave. I gave him 1 of my hybrid Peacocks. Hes an Lwanda X. He looks awesome right now. I also gave him 3 Female peacocks as tank starters. So they stay for now. Petricolas and some algea eaters are soon to come

My friend doesn't do water changes on a regular basis so I will have to go by there or remind him at work constantly. Im hoping he will enjoy them enough to realize its for the good of the tank. We wont be adding any additives. Im keeping this simple as I can for him. The fish will adapt and I know lots of people don't add anything and have success. Once again not my style but Im trying to work with what I have. I might try to convince him to add something for KH to help keep Ph stable. Ill see how the tank is doing in a month

Of course. I cant setup an African tank without live plants. He had 2 Sword plants and Crypts from his previous setup. So they are in there hopefully growing. The swords arn't looking their best but the crypts are doing well

I will post more pictures or videos and the fish grow. He is having an issue with minor algea. Im in the process of solving that issue. Which can be tough when the tank isn't at your house.

Hope you guys like it. He loves it and admitted hes been turning the light on longer than the timers is programmed for so he can watch them at night :) Might be my algea problem :)

 

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I'm excited to see this tank! Yay mbuna =P They're very high bioload fish so you'll have to make sure he does his water changes! Also make sure he is feeding them food with lots of vegetable matter since they are very susceptible to bloat if they're eating meaty foods without any fibre! As long as the pH is over 7 (preferably 7.6) from the aragonite I think he should be fine without additives!
 

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Cool pics please
 

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Discussion Starter #4
There is a video link at the bottom Dino
 

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Sweet looking tank.. I need to figure out how to get plants into mine that wont get ripped apart lol
 

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Sweet looking tank.. I need to figure out how to get plants into mine that wont get ripped apart lol
That's definitely a struggle if you have Mbuna. It takes constant attention + trail and error. I had some nice plants in my tank but if I missed a day or two feeding (because I was on vacation or gone for a long weekend) my plants would be ripped apart when I got back. I found it was mostly the yellow labs and the giant demasoni that I have. The peacocks/haps tend to leave it alone for the most part.

Justin is a great resource for a planted African tank though. He's had the most success of any tank I've seen.
 

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You have done an awesome job man! When are you coming over to work on mine? Lol.

I actually love those little mbunas. They are always so active, swimming in and out of the caves. Maybe I should get raid of most of the peacocks and keep several groups of mbunas instead...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks everyone. The whole African thing has been so fun for me. Its taken my fish tank skills to a whole new level. I think Ive gone a little over board with plants in my tank sometimes but its the fun of learning which plants work and which ones don't. Its also become my signature for African tanks. The crypts have done well in my tank as well as my buddies and his is mostly mbuna. Ill be posting an updated video of his tank this weekend.

I also want to mention we are not adding any water additives to my friends tank because he simply wouldn't add them on a regular basis or he'd forget. So all I used was aragonite substrate and crushed coral in 1 filter. He has had no issues in 2 months and the fish are doing great. Ive learned you can only expect so much out of fish keepers and you either need to work with them or watch them slowly destroy their tank. He slacked on water changes before but now that he has African's he enjoys his tank and does weekly water changes. Baby steps :)

Im planning on buying a 225g in the next year so I can give my fish a little more breathing room and my plants a little more space. My tank is only 4ft. 6ft is so much better. I can hardly wait.

Now that I work at a LFS that sells African's I'm hoping it helps me take take this African addiction even higher. I get to scape tank after tank. Its so fun. Hopefully Ill get to setup a show tank there. It will be bad a**
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Buy big crypts. I get rid of plants out of my tank regularly. I owe you for the group order. I can toss you some for free next time I prune so you can try them out. I know Petland poco just brought in a wack load of plants. Lots of larger Crypts. That seems key. A well established root system and mature plant. Lighting obviously is a factor and feeding the plants. Seachem flourish root tabs work great
 

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Tanks looking good! Nice mix of fish he's got there, his interest will probably grow as he learns bit by bit. African tanks are some of the most active, colourful, and enjoyable fw tanks IMO.
 

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Tanks looking good! Nice mix of fish he's got there, his interest will probably grow as he learns bit by bit. African tanks are some of the most active, colourful, and enjoyable fw tanks IMO.
I couldn't agree more.. I think a huge key point is to source out good quality fish as well. Back in the day, I used to dislike African cichlids because all the ones I saw at the LFS were very boring colours and they all looked the same. Once I learned more about them and discovered what good quality Africans look like, it blew me away. Such bright colours and so many different colour variations. Then once you get to know their personality, they're addictive for sure.
 
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