30 gallon Cichlid set-up: What are my option? FISH EXPERTS HELP!?

I'm choosing not to rush picking my fishies :).

So far I did some research and am interested in Mawali Cichlids (though internet info is greatly mixed). I also want a red tail shark and understand the danger of keeping it with ample, agressive cichlids so I know to be careful. I hold a 30 "square" gallon tank cycling (very slowly) and hope to maintain

1 Red Tail Shark
1 Electric Yellow Cichlid

as well as at most minuscule 2 more fish.

I understand that I enjoy to carefully find the right stability of pH and hardness to suit adjectives my fishies. They should be at least 3 inches so they don't draw from picked on, but no more than 7 inches to avoid being the menace.

Since I'm not a big follower of "boring" fish - I need backing picking mild cichlids that would fit in this aquarium.

If possible, their diet should be complex on the veggie side and should live at least 6 years.

Thanks!
Answers: IF by 'square' container you mean that it's shaped square, later for cichlids this tank is smaller amount then a standard 30 gallon - it's length that define most of the swimming room and all of the territory.

Mbuna are both active and aggressive, and while they'll do fine on their own, adjectives of their best behaviour is interactive near their own kind. Also, If you start mixing up cichlids within that little tank it will not be pretty - that is to say a single species size tank. Stick a Kenyi contained by there next to the electric yellow and permit me know how it goes - or better nonetheless, don't.

A tank this size is impressively constricting to fish this active and territorial, and even 7 inches will prove constricted contained by it. Some of those fish mentioned in another post own territories surrounded by the wild of which your container is just a speck.

The best benign of cichlid you can have is a dwarf cichlid. Rams, Apistogramma, or Kribensis. They hold all the guise of the larger types, and your tank can in reality give these cichlids room to live and thrive.

For something a bit larger, a pair of Convicts or Firemouths would work out adaquately. But going any larger is simply not a great plan.

If your mind is set on Malawi, later you can probably get away near a trio of electric yellows (1m2f), but that would be about it. And don't tolerate size fool you - there are 3 inch Malawi cichlids that stipulation 4 foot tanks of late because of how aggressive they are.

Also, don't worry almost PH - it's a misconception that they need constant levels. What you see contained by all these profiles on the net is a rough estimation of what the PH is in the fishes instinctive habitat, not what it needs to survive. I've other kept all my fish within the same sea (ph 8.2 or so) - including my 12 year old 'soft water' nicaraguan cichlid, who have also bred in this same "unsuitable" sea. If your PH falls between 7 and 8.4 you can keep any cichlid you aspiration Believe it or not. (The reason not to mix up to date world and african cichlids is not about hose down, it's about their completely different behaviours that sort them incompatible)

To learn more roughly speaking cichlids check out www.cichlid-forum.com.
more electric yellows. they are a pretty peacefull african cichlid. and only win about 4-5 inches.

i wouldnt mix south american and african cichlids b/c of the huge difference within ph.

most other africans will out grow a 30 gallon shortly and fight constantly.
they set up near own territories and want a good bit of room.
Your choice of cichlids is really limited by the size of the container.Look at some of the "shell dweller" dwarfs. Almost any of the Mbuna will be too aggressive for a tank of smaller number than 100 gallons. The shell dwellers are actually Tanganyikan fish,but will be OK contained by Malawi conditions(pH 8.3 hardness 425 ppm, kH moderate). You "shark" probably won't do too very well in these conditions.
As to energy expectancy,that's pretty well up to you. I enjoy Malawians that are many years elder than six,and are still active and attractive. The elevated pH demanded by Rift Lake Cichlids makes the ammonia and Nitrites more toxic than indeterminate or low pH water,so you surely must do frequent (weekly or twice a week) water change.
Study the water requirement for the Red Tail and you may want to reconsider.
One other entry,"boring fish" are ones that you don't understand. If you provide the right conditions, almost any fish will provide plenty of interest.
Ok if you want to save the electric yellow cichlid you can put a couple of kenyi cichlids or give more electric yellows. If you put the electric yellow out after I would suggest an electric blue or a convict cichlid.
Blood parrots would do fine.
here are some other choices:
Peacock cichlid
Green alarm cichlid
Jack Dempsey cichlid
I would suggest adding more electric yellows or kenyi cichlids because they are mildy agressive.


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