I've never kept any cichlids, but would love to hear your ideas about one or more dwarf species (and which sexes) to keep in my new 50g living room display tank.
- Current low-tech aquascaped 55g tank in my office has 35 tiny fish (avg. 1-2")--appropriately-sized schools of tiny tetras, cories, otos; loaches, 1 female betta, and a few male guppies. Everybody gets along great and there is a lot of fun but peaceful activity to watch.
New low-tech aquascaped 50g tank in the living room has no critters yet. For this one, I'd like bigger (avg. 2-4"), colorful fish. I'd still like to have a group each of cories, tetras (or substitute pencilfish), otos (or substitute SAEs). But for this tank, I want the highlight to be a group of S. American dwarf cichlids or rainbow kribs.
Note: Our local water stays at pH 8.2 despite plants, peat in the filter, oak leaves and driftwood. Many fish hobbyists in my area successfully keep and even breed soft-water species in this high-pH water. But, all-else being equal, I'd prefer a species that would be happy in high-pH water.
A. borelli, A. cacatuoides, A. aggasiz, P. pulcher and Keyhole cichlids are often suggested as possibilities for community tanks. Would any of these work, or do you have different ones to suggest? Could I successfully keep something like 4 males of 2 species, as long as no females are present? If not and I get one group of one species (whatever you recommend), what would be the ideal sex ratio?