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Fish/Cichlid compatibility


amber wrote at 2012-11-23 11:35:50
i had one small (1.5") yellow lab in a tank with a very large 8 or 9 in pleco and two 6"columbian sharks and 3 3" bala shark in a 45 gallon tall tank. the bala's were harassed so bad, one jumped out and the other two died from stress, the pleco...i found his remains, a clear shell like structure, behind the castle in the tank without ever noticing his absence, so it had to be quick, my tank was beside my couch so i could watch them all the time. the two columbians seems to do fine with him. he was very big 5-6" when my tank sprang a leak so i gave him to lady at the pet store along with my 9" columbians. bought a new tank later, just 30 gal, had one yellow lab and 2 columbians...he ate large hunks out of them behind there heads and there fins and tails as well. i found them a new home and have kept him with nothing more than an albino cat to keep the tank clean ever since and its fine now. these fish ARE KILLERS!! they will at some point kill any non cichlids unless they feel the other fish is not competition. some times they will kill other cichlids too though. if you notice fish missing from your tank, move the cichlids or the other fish very soon or you will lose the weaker fishies. good luck to ya!!


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Ron Coleman


I am an expert on cichlid fishes, particularly New World cichlids. My broader expertise includes the behavior, ecology and reproduction of fishes in general. (I am NOT an expert on Goldfish). Please do not use abbreviations, such as "my GT has a swollen eye" because I don't know what a "GT" is. The more clearly you can explain your question, the better chance I have of understanding what it is that you seek. I keep fishes both as a scientist and as a hobbyist and I currently maintain about 140 aquariums.


I am an Associate Professor at the California State University, Sacramento in the Department of Biological Sciences, and I run a website, called the Cichlid Research Home Page . I also write for many popular aquarist magazines, and I was editor of Cichlid News magazine for several years. I am a scientist and I spend my time teaching fish biology, ecology, behavior and evolution and doing research on the reproductive biology of fishes, particularly cichlids. I do research in the laboratory and in Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Mexico. My main interest is understanding the evolution of parental care in fishes. I am interested in encouraging greater public awareness, understanding and participation in science.

Cichlid News, Tropical Fish Hobbyist, Freshwater and Marine Aquarium, Science, Behavioural Ecology and Sociobiology, Copeia, Canadian Journal of Zoology, Trends in Ecology and Evolution, AUK, Environmental Biology of Fishes

PhD (Toronto, 1993) MSc (Simon Fraser, 1986) BSc (British Columbia, 1983)

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