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Apistogramma/SA Cichlid books?

Discussion in 'Apistogramma' started by Mottfish, Oct 15, 2008.

  1. Mottfish

    Mottfish New Member 5 Year Member

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    Hello folks,

    For a long while now I've wanted to set up a tank dedicated to keeping and perhaps breeding some kind of Apistogramma. (Never kept any before.)

    I was wondering if you could recommend any good or 'essential' books with plenty of good info. about Apistos to help me with my research etc.? I'd especially like something that could help me identify them with info. about the environment they live in in the wild if possible. (And hopefully show the true colours of the fish/unedited.)

    I'd like to keep a wild type of apisto, though nothing to challenging? Any suggestions?

    Hopefully water conditions won't be a problem as I'd use rainwater as theres usually plenty here in the UK. Anyone use rainwater? Do you do anything to it before adding to tank?

    Many thanks.
  2. ste12000

    ste12000 Member 5 Year Member

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    Hi Mottfish, welcome to the forum..Its good to have a fellow brit aboard.

    Books!!! you should search high and low for a copy of the Mergus cichlid atlas 1 and 2..These two books contain all the info you will ever need on the vast majority of south american dwarf cichlids. Book 1 is very hard to find but with patience you should find one secondhand..
    Whilst you look for that book buy a copy of American cichlids 1 - Dwarf cichlids by Horst Linke and Dr Wolfgang Staeck..This is the next best book for good solid info. Goodluck.
  3. apistobob

    apistobob Member 5 Year Member

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    Mottfish,

    I am always glad to see people who look before they leap and it is good that you want to know what you are doing before you start. As ste12000 mentioned the Mergus (Romer) Atlas I is the best book but the English language version is almost impossible to find. If you read German you will do fine with the book. I do not recommend Vol II for beginning dwarf cichlid keepers.

    There are a couple of general info books that provide a good overview of how to set up and keep these great fishes but they are getting out of date. Here is a link to a dwarf cichlid book review page that I have put together.

    www.dwarfcichlid.com/Book_reviews.php

    As you learn more and begin to have specific questions, the folks on this forum are among the most knowledgeable apisto keepers around and you can almost always find a good answer to any question.

    Best of luck.

    Bob
  4. K-Pon

    K-Pon Member 5 Year Member

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    THX apistobob
    GJ Man
  5. dw1305

    dw1305 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Rainwater

    Hi Mottfish,
    I'm in Corsham (20 miles east of Bristol) and I've used rainwater without any problems for the last 2 years. I collect it with a down-pipe diverter and the only filtering I do is that I have 2 water butts (with lids) connected together, so that any feathers, moss, birds nests etc. end up in the first one, and I take the water from the second one. I give the butts a clean (just with a hose/tap water) every winter. I change 10% of the tanks every day, in the summer I take it straight from the butt, in the winter I have a days supply in the house to warm up before I use it. I usually have a look at/smell of the water before I tip it in, and its usually got some Daphnia swimming in it, which I take as a good sign. When I started to use it I mixed it with a little tap water to give some buffering, but I've found it doesn't need it.

    In fact the main disadvantage I've found is that the rainwater has a higher pH, and conductivity, than you might expect (pH 7 - 7.2, conductivity 100 - 200 micro-siemens), possibly because it's picking up carbonate rich dust (aerial or from the roof) on the way down. As a comparison, our de-ionised water (I work in a lab) has a pH of approx 6 and a conductivity of 4-5 microsiemens and "Corsham tap" is almost infinitely buffered with a pH of 7.8 and conductivity of 800 - 900 microsiemens.

    The pH reading is a bit of a red herring really, because both the de-ionised and rainwater have very little buffering capacity and a very small addition of acid (H+) or base (OH-, but in this case all calcium carbonate) has a very large effect on the pH.

    Apistogramma cacatuoides breed in my rainwater without any problem, but I'm not sure it would be soft enough for the more black water Apistogramma species.

    cheers Darrel (I've got plenty of cacatuoides "Double Red juveniles (some sexable) if you want to PM me.)
  6. dw1305

    dw1305 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Apistobobs website and books

    Hi again,
    Should have also said I've found this web-site, Microman's and particularly ApistoBob's web site really useful, and also "South American Dwarf Cichlids" by Hans J. Mayland & Dieter Bork. (I got my copy form Steve Simpson books).
    cheers Darrel
  7. Refael Hdr.

    Refael Hdr. Member 5 Year Member

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    Does anybody know what happened to the publication of Cichlid Atlas 1 new edition?
    It was supposed to be published early this year, but from some reason it didn't...
  8. Mike Wise

    Mike Wise Moderator Staff Member 5 Year Member

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    The last I heard (last month), Uwe was revising CA1 with new pictures and information. I hope he also corrects some of the old errors.
  9. Hubbynz

    Hubbynz New Member 5 Year Member

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    I recently purchased Dwarf Cichlids by Linke and Staeck. It is a nice and affordable beginners guide to dwarfs with lots of illustrations and details on their natural environment, care and breeding. Maybee a bit dated now but a nice lil all-rounder.

    aspitobobs reviews are good.