Setting Up Your New Tank

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Setting Up Your New Tank

Post by Drake-tripod on Mon Jul 06, 2009 11:07 pm

So you have this nice new shiny tank sitting in your home and it's all ready to get set up and ready to decorate. Now the part that decides if it's a fish tank or a work of art. This is all personal taste but i have come to notice your fish will show better color and feel more at home if its done in a more natural manner. Most people just buy the plastic plants and some plastic caves and stuff and with allot of work they could be made cool with that. But Cichlids like lots of places to hide and depending on what lake and species they are the amount of rock work and cover needed varies. Example Lake Malawi Mbuna need more rock work and hiding spots due to the fact they are very territorial and if there isn't enough spots for them to hide and claim other fish will be harassed and maybe even killed. Now on substrate or the stuff you put on the bottom of your tank. You can use gravel but most Cichlids like to dig pits and sift threw it and its harder with gravel and I personally like the look of sand dew to the fact the can sift it dig easier which I think makes them feel more at home they will still dig with gravel but it is more of a strenuous task. Before you put any substrate you have to rinse it and sand you have to rinse the most go to the (How To Rinse sand sticky to see how) but worth it in the end there are some basic colors there is black white and then the natural tan color. To me the color choice of what substrate you do use is up to what your stocking your tank with to. You may be thinking wow really? But if your having more darker colored fish stay away from black black maybe be cool looking but when fish are in it makes them look really dark. Also what lake you choose to keep helps because lake Tanganyika fish tend to be more dark in completion as in Altolamprologus calvus, Eretmodus cyanostictus Isanga point also the black substrate tends to drain fish colors, it will with Cyphotilapia frontosa most of the Cyprichromis species. Now with white is it grows allege real quick and also reflects allot of light so the fish look washed out as well but it does help make darker fish stand out and really pop like the Altolamprologus calvus and such. My favorite is tan its natural and its a equal amount of light and dark and makes most fish stand out nice and look there best. One problem though is that its not easy finding cheap black or white sand but for tan you can use play sand but have to rinse it very very well. Now on decorating my favorite part. Most people love to put plants in there tanks it adds color and the have a little movement and so on but Cichlids some times dont want plants its a hit or miss iI got lucky with it i think if you put them in when you first start the tank when they are small they will grow to mind them but some of the bigger Cichlids like Astronotus ocellatus, Amphilophus festae, Amphilophus labiatus are a hit or miss with them. With the rock work i prefer to use medium sized to small rocks but i have smaller tanks but if you have the bigger tanks with heavier rocks i would suggest to use the egg caret method and line the bottom before adding the sand with egg create so it gives a sturdy base to stack and keeps the rocks from hitting the bottom. You can even do this with the smaller rocks to in case the fall down. Now I'm not telling you to do it a certain way or any thing how you keep your tank im jsut giving suggestions to help you utilize your fishes true beauty.
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Drake-tripod
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