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Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1

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    May 2015
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    Question New guy won't eat because of harassment


    0 Not allowed!
    Hi there... so I have a 55gal African cichlid tank stocked with 3 cichlids, 1 jack dempsey, 1 blood parrot and a pleco. All of the fish are very peaceful, considering they're cichlids, except for the smallest one. He is orange with black blotches, with a short body instead of the "peacock" body. I don't know the exact species. But anyway, he's an ass.

    The ass is only about 1.5", so when I got him I was scared he would become someone's dinner and not make it. But on the contrary, he quickly claimed a territory and began punking everyone, including the dempsey who is the biggest fish (about 7"). He is always the first to eat, and after a few bites, he allows the other fish to eat. It's kind of funny actually, because he's so small.

    But recently I added my last fish, and I picked a cichlid who looks like the afra jallo reef: light blue, almost white, with dark stripes and yellow on his top fin. He is about 6", making him the second biggest fish in the tank. He looked a little aggressive in the store with his tank mates, so I thought he could hold his own as the new guy in my tank. I even worried that he might become the aggressor and stress out my fish.

    Well it's been about 2 days. He still hasn't claimed a territory, and it seems like all of the other fish hate him. If he gets close to them, they chase him around the tank for a while and he runs away. I ordered some more plants and decor to create new hiding spaces...they should be here next Tuesday. But in the meantime, I'm not sure what to do about eating. Everyone is aggressive when it's feeding time. Even if they are leave the new guy alone alone, he looks scared to eat. He watches me put the food in but hesitates to come eat it. During his hesitation, other fish come eat it before he does. I dropped in a couple of sinking pellets so he could eat off of the ground, but he didn't go for that either. I don't think he's eaten since I got him and it seems to be because he's scared of getting chased.

    Any idea what I could do?

    Thanks,

    Alyssa

  2. #2

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    1 Not allowed!
    How about a picture of your fish, especially the orange and black spots one. That way we will be able to help you solve your problem. You say you have an African cichlid tank, but the only fish you name are South American. You shouldn't mix the continents because the water requirements for these fish are very different.
    Right now it seems you have to many aggressive and territorial fish in a tank that doesn't give them enough room to claim the territory they want.
    When I go fishing I just throw sharp rocks in the water and wait for the dead fish to float to the top... Kingfisher
    Everything happens for a reason. Sometimes that reason is you are stupid and make bad decisions.

    I think my fish is adjusting well to the four gallon, He's laying on his side attempting to go to sleep on the bottom of the gravel.
    Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
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  3. #3

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    0 Not allowed!
    group pic.jpg

    Here's a pic sorry it's so blurry... but the small one in front is the aggressor, and the light blue guy is the new one who won't eat.

    I understand mixing SA and African was a bad idea... I'm a newbie to the hobby and the specialist at my fish store was very misleading and made me feel like it could work. So far I haven't had many problems until this guy was added

  4. #4

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    Thanks for the gift! I bow to your experience so i wanted to be sure that i did not give the OP wrong info. - Silbar   Tx for all the help for me and everyone else! - angelcraze2   Rocksor knows cichlids! - Brhino   Can''t give rep points, but great job on the diagnosis/treatment - Boundava   Sending you a geophagus to  tank you for your analytical powers! - discusluv   

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    1 Not allowed!
    It is not unusual for it to take up to 2 weeks for a new cichlid to eat or claim any territory in an already established cichlid community.

  5. #5

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    0 Not allowed!
    Thanks that's good to hear... I just didn't want him to be bullied into starvation.

  6. #6

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    Thanks for the gift! I bow to your experience so i wanted to be sure that i did not give the OP wrong info. - Silbar   Tx for all the help for me and everyone else! - angelcraze2   Rocksor knows cichlids! - Brhino   Can''t give rep points, but great job on the diagnosis/treatment - Boundava   Sending you a geophagus to  tank you for your analytical powers! - discusluv   

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    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by AlyssaLovesPlecos View Post
    Thanks that's good to hear... I just didn't want him to be bullied into starvation.
    That can still happen. The stress can be so great that the fish just simply never eats and then gets sick or dies from starvation. It all depends on the personality of the fish.
    Last edited by Rocksor; 06-04-2015 at 04:00 AM.

  7. #7

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    0 Not allowed!
    wow okay...hopefully the new hiding places will help relieve his stress. Is it a good idea to rearrange all the decor? I heard this will help because established territories will be gone and the fish will all search for a new territory. I also read that lowering the temp a little will help with aggression. Is that true?

  8. #8

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    Thanks for the gift! I bow to your experience so i wanted to be sure that i did not give the OP wrong info. - Silbar   Tx for all the help for me and everyone else! - angelcraze2   Rocksor knows cichlids! - Brhino   Can''t give rep points, but great job on the diagnosis/treatment - Boundava   Sending you a geophagus to  tank you for your analytical powers! - discusluv   

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    3 Not allowed!
    Since the fish are as big as they are, they already know the whole tank and won't really fight over new territory even when you add more decoration. In order to add more territory, you will need to add more floor space, which means going from a 4 foot tank to a 6 foot long tank.

    Since the fish you have are cold blooded, lowering the temp will reduce their metabolism, and at the same time reduce their need to eat as much. As a result, they don't need to fight over food as much, and reduce the aggression. However, since you have fish from different places, the lower temp may not affect some of the fish as much as the others due to their tolerance of a lower temperature. For instance the africans may become less aggressive at 72f, but the JD is capable of existing easily as low as 68f, which means the aggression in the JD will not necessarily be affected as much as the africans.

  9. #9

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    0 Not allowed!
    Interesting... thanks for your help

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