Tips On Setting Up Your CICHLID AQUARIUM

female Apistogramma nijsseni in mating colors
Female Apistogramma nijsseni in mating colors (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
It is not very difficult setting up a cichlid aquarium. This can be done by yourself with ease if you know how to go about the process.

The most important aspect is to choose the right sized aquarium for your cichlids. If you are a beginner, then it is recommended to choose a 20-gallon large aquarium. This will ensure that your cichlids have enough space to move around and do not fight with each other. It is also easy to maintain larger aquariums.

Fit a water pump and filter in your cichlid aquarium as fishes survive best in toxic-free, clean water.

Decorating the cichlid aquarium is an interesting process. Here, it is important to recreate their original habitat. Items you can put into the aquarium include limestone, sand, gravel, flat stones, mini caves, hardy plants, overturned flower pots and structures that can act as a hideout for your cichlids. Apart from enhancing the decor, flat stones are used by cichlids to lay eggs and the PH level of water is neutralized by sand and gravel.

Choose a cichlid aquarium with a lid. Being very aggressive, there are chances of cichlids jumping out of the aquarium. Be sure to leave enough opening for an exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide.

Keep your cichlid aquariums in a permanent place preferably away from any heat source including direct sunlight as heat is bad for them. As far as possible, do not move them around too much.

To ensure that cichlids are not affected by the temperature in your area, it is a good idea installing a water heater inside the aquarium. This will keep the tank temperature constant. In order to allow for stabilizing of water and to ensure that chlorine has evaporated completely, it is recommended to wait for a day after setting up the aquarium to put the cichlids in.

Setting up the cichlid aquarium is only the first step. You must ensure that they do not fight among them and live in a happy and comfortable manner. Here are a few tips -

Begin with just a small group of fish or maybe with just one cichlid. In a new aquarium, it takes quite some time for the nitrogen cycle to run smoothly. It is therefore not recommended to crowd the aquarium initially.

Be sure to keep the cichlid aquarium clean and tidy. At least once a month, ensure that you clean it without using soap as soap can leave a residue that is toxic and harmful for cichlids.

Do not overfeed your cichlids as too much food can make them sick. Excess food in the water can also deteriorate the quality of aquarium water.

It is recommended to change cichlid aquarium water every day. Clean the filters on a regular basis and ensure a twenty-five percent change every week.

Mixing other fishes with cichlids must be done carefully. Choose fishes that live in the same kind of habitat as the cichlids to ensure that they survive.

A well set up cichlid aquarium can keep your cichlids healthy and happy. Life of your cichlids can be prolonged by taking care of safety, providing water of good quality and ensuring proper diet. Take the advice of experienced cichlid owners or do your own research to find out everything you need to know about cichlids before purchasing them.

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