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New apisto owner questions

Duppen

New Member
Messages
3
Hello everyone.

I am thinking about setting up a new 34 gallon (128 liter) community aquarium with apistogrammas. I have read countless threads on this forum, and feel like i may soon be ready to start up my tank. I just have a few questions, so that i know i'm certain i don't do anything wrong.

My base dimensions are 15.8x15.8 inches (40x40cm). I was thinking of creating 2 territories - 1 each side of the tank. With plants, driftwood, coconut caves and rocks to create an "island" on each side with caves. I may leave som open space inbetween the 2 islands, to really seperate the two territories.

From what i've read, it's possible to keep 2 pairs of 2 different species of apistogrammas with eachother. As long as the tank is big enough and proper territories are created. I was thinking 1 male and female cacatuoides, and 1 male and female macmasteriFurthermore i think i'll throw in 6 pygmy corys, and maybe about 10 cardinals.

I am not interested in breeding, but i would love to see the apistos interessting behaviour between male and female - and that's why i don't get all males. And IF some eggs survive - cool!

Now the questions:
A. Are the macmasteri and cacatuoides too similar in fin shape etc? If yes, would bolivian rams or A. borelii work?
B. What order should i add the apistos? All at once?
C. I know corys and cardinals may eat the eggs, but otherwise they are fine in an apisto tank, right?
D. How sensitive are these apistos to PH changes? I am running CO2, and don't know if i should leave it on 24/7 og turn it off when the lights are out - and therefore make PH changes
E. Too many fish??
F. Anything else i've missed, please tell me.

Hope it's not too many questions at once, i really want this tank to be awesome.
 

dw1305

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Messages
2,526
Location
Wiltshire UK
Hi all,
Welcome.
I am thinking about setting up a new 34 gallon (128 liter) community aquarium with apistogrammas.......My base dimensions are 15.8x15.8 inches (40x40cm). I was thinking of creating 2 territories - 1 each side of the tank. With plants, driftwood, coconut caves and rocks to create an "island" on each side with caves. I may leave som open space inbetween the 2 islands, to really seperate the two territories.
Are the base dimensions (or volume) right? Is the tank 90cm tall? If it is you don't have enough base area for more than one pair of Apistogramma, and even then you would have to have a lot of cover to break up line of sight.
D. How sensitive are these apistos to PH changes? I am running CO2, and don't know if i should leave it on 24/7 og turn it off when the lights are out - and therefore make PH changes
The pH changes you get from adding CO2 don't change the alkalinity of the water just the HCO3- ~ H2CO2 ~ pH equilibrium point. I'm a big fan of planted tanks, but not necessarily of added CO2.

How alkaline is your water normally?
I was thinking of making the territories like on this picture
Nice tank, just lots of cover, it doesn't really matter how you get there. I'd add some leaf litter to that tank.

cheers Darrel
 

Duppen

New Member
Messages
3
Hello Darrel, thank you for the nice reply!

Sorry for my mistake, my tank is 80x40x40cm, so my base dimensions are 80x40cm - would it still be too small for two pairs?

Are you saying that adding co2 is not a problem? To be honest i don't know the Kh or ph of my water yet, i have to buy the test kits.
 

Bart Hazes

Active Member
Messages
228
I have had pairs of two species (A. allpahuayo & A. sp. Abacaxis) in a tank near your size (90x45x30) and get along very well and even both spawning (but only one pair continuing to guard their fry). I had another pair of A. sp. Abacaxis in a 120x60x25 and when I added a male baenschi he was chased to death by the next morning. Both tanks had lots of cover and hiding spots but fish have different personalities and higher fish density can sometimes help reduce, or disperse, aggression. If you don't have a second tank to separate fighting pairs I would recommend to get one pair and use other fish of interest to build a community.
Apistos with cories can work but I try to stay away from bottom fish in my apisto tanks because they show more aggression to fish that occupy the bottom where they also guide their fry. Tetras and otocinclus work well.
 

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