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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, I'm a newer fish tank keeper. I currently have a setup with three 1 year old Jack Dempseys of different varieties and as much as I love them I find it a little sad that I can't add anymore fish to their tank due to their aggressive nature.

So I want to set up a second tank. Originally I wanted peacock cichlids that would make large beautiful schools, but I soon realized how much space they would need and decided it might be a little out of reach for me at this time. This brings me to my question about dwarf cichlids.

1. Are dwarf cichlids aggressive? Are there any that aren't?
2. Will they school together or are they more independent?
3. Exactly how large will they get and how many should I plan to keep together?

The only thing I plan to mix with them is one pleco that is currently 5'' and has a 35 gallon tank to himself. I plan on upgrading them to a second 90 gallon to match my dempseys' tank in time, but while they are still babies the smaller tank will have to do as I plan on moving in the next 6 months and feel it would be easier to wait and get the large tank after I'm settled in.

Any suggestions/comments/ideas are welcome! Thank you for your time and any advice :)
 

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unless the pleco is a dwarf you will need a bigger tank for him think several hundred gallons(200+)but their are plenty od nice smaller ones that can and will fight if they have to.
 

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Cichlids in general are all territorial to some extent. Main differences are the size of the territory they claim and just how particular they are about defending it. What are the dimensions of the 35 gallon tank?
Species selection depends somewhat on your local water chemistry, and how difficult it is (and how much trouble you're willing to go to) to adjust and maintain it if necessary. Apsito's are suited to soft/acidic water conditions. Kribensis are a bit less particular, and there are a number of Tanganykian shell dwellers that need hard/alkaline water. It's generally much more trouble to soften water and lower pH (and maintain stable values) than to make raise pH and hardness.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I decided to go with a bigger tank, it's 55 gallons (for now but will go to a 5' long 90 gallon in 5-6 months). I'm not sure the dimensions as I'm waiting for it to arrive from my co-worker. I'm assuming a pretty basic rectangle shape. As for my water, I'm on well water that is mineral dense so I will use water from my tank as well as conditioners to make sure water is as it needs to be. I don't mind going through that trouble.

I'm just trying to find a beautiful schooling fish aside from tetras and more common fish. I've also started looking into killies? Pardon me if that's not the proper terminology! In the end, I want a decent amount of fish 5-10, that are colorful, school, and will survive just fine in a 90 gallon.

Thank you for helping me through this ^_^
 

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well if you big and colurful fish i would go with congo tetras.
 

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A 55 is 48" long x 12" wide, never heard of a 60" long 90 gallon. Those are usually 48" x 18", same footprint as a 75 but a little taller. If you do end up with a 60" long tank you could stock rainbows, there are a number of different species available.
Hard well water would be suited to African cichlids and rainbows, not so much most South or Central American fish, although cooler water fish from Uruguay would also do well in that. There are some colorful species of Gymnogeophagus and Australoheros available. They require lower temps than most "tropical" fish, unheated tank at the least.
 

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actually there are a couple of companies that manufacture 5 ft. long 90 gallon tanks..they just aren't one of the major manufacturers..a number of companies will also make custom sized tanks to an individuals specifications.
i personally have only seen 1 ...if i remember correctly it measured 60 x 18 x 19.......probably slightly shy of 90 gallons..
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you guys so much for the ideas! I can't wait for my new tank mates :)

As for the tank, my father built his house and wanted 2 90 gallon tanks built into his mantle above the tv/fireplace. However, my step mom decided it was better use of space to put a christmas village up there every December. Haha, free custom fish tanks for me! (it could also be just under 5') I never actually got out the measuring tape. I only know what I've been told, until I move to a new house and have the space to set it up ^_^
 

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so...what you gonna put in it?please say you are not gonna keep that pleco if it is a common.
 

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90 is big enough for a common pleco, lol.

There are timid cichlds, shy cichlids, but no truly non-aggressive cichlids. Some will only bother their own kind or only defend a small shell, but all show defense of eggs and young. 90 is big enough for your peacocks even schooling cichlids like paracyps, For tetra, emperor or congo are good for a 4' tank or larger, in barbs, denisoni are spectacular in a planted tanks.

Some cichlids school as adults. Peacocks make schools of holding mothers or courting females, but males hold territory and even build circles during breeding season Look for video from lake Malawi. Cyps breed in open water and school. But most new world cichlids will settle in a small area in pairs and defend it while they breed.
 

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i beg to differ,imagine 2 footers or closing in in 2 foot,in that.they can,have,and will get to 2 foot or at least really close to it.i am not trying to be rude when i said that.but if you dont want big cichlids you could do a bunch of shellies or another kind that will give you generations of kids.wait its convicts im thinking of.
 
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