Cichlids and Betta? Help! - Page 2 - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 06:16 PM Thread Starter
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By my math, I have one male cichlid and and a Betta in a 10G tank. I can move the Betta and give the cichlid the tank.

I refuse to return him to the pet store, where he had no cover, no gravel, and had very little moving water from the sponge filter (I have a power filter that cascades and makes a nice current for him).

Do Cichlids need to be a pair? Or are they happy single?

Kona- Blue Veiltale
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R.I.P Tsuki- Marble Crowntail 8/9/16
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 06:37 PM
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Depending on the cichlid some are better off by themselves some aren't

a rule of thumb is one male per 3 females.

so a single male would work in a 10 gallon or upgrade to a 30 gallon and go with one male to three females.

A couple would work in a 20 gallon if it's heavily planted with places to hide.

Don't do two males with one or two females. The stronger male will kill the other male.
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 09:25 PM Thread Starter
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I'm not looking to go bigger- a 10G will be hard enough to move. So I'll just leave the male alone.

I might try removing the barrier is a couple of weeks to see if they can coexist. If there's any sign of nipping and whatnot, I'll put the divider back in and transfer the Betta. I have a 10G guppy tank that is understocked, and I've kept Betta's and these guppies sucesfully before. I need to figure out a way to reduce the nitrites though- they're quite high (tested them today; 2 ppm!), although they are due for a water change tomorrow.

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Kona- Blue Veiltale
1 10 Gallon Aquarium
R.I.P Tsuki- Marble Crowntail 8/9/16
R.I.P Mr. Nibbs- Double Tail Butterfly 2/7/17
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 10:02 PM
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If the nitrites are that high you should do a water change today if possible (I'm not sure what time it is where you live), or at least dose a product like Seachem Prime to temporarily detoxify them if not possible. I lost my first betta to nitrite poisoning, and 2ppm is certainly getting high enough to start causing your fish some distress.

I'm also not sure how sensitive apistogramma are to poor water quality, but most fish species are not as tolerant as bettas (which is why some betta keepers can struggle when they branch out into other fish). Personally I would recommend checking out an apistogramma specific forum (there is at least one out there). Based on what I've read apistos can have some specific needs in terms of substrate, water conditions etc.

The trouble when you've got two species notorious for aggression/territoriality, is that any disputes may very quickly escalate beyond nipping. Based on personal experience I can say it does not take long for one fish to seriously maim or kill another.

So I would be very cautious in removing that divider.


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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 10:12 PM Thread Starter
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I actually did testing for everything but the 2.5 today (I have 2 10Gs and a 2.5 which houses another Betta)- the divided 10G was near perfect on the water conditions (the ammonia was creeping towards .25 but nitrites and nitrates were both 0. pH was 6.6 or so, which is ideal for the cichlid I think, but low for the betta if I recall correctly).

I can put in Prime rn for the guppy tank- I'll do a water change tomorrow afternoon. It's probably just a spike in the cycle.

I'll look into that. I'd love to find a thread. I have plenty of substrate, water current, cover and a cave for the little guy- it was originally set up for a betta, and so there's plenty of sight blocks between the two sides.

I will be very careful in deciding if/when to remove the divider. If I do, they will be under very close watch.

Kona- Blue Veiltale
1 10 Gallon Aquarium
R.I.P Tsuki- Marble Crowntail 8/9/16
R.I.P Mr. Nibbs- Double Tail Butterfly 2/7/17
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post #16 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-11-2019, 01:37 PM
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Personally, it worked out for me. I have a betta and a cichlid living in the same tank and they get along fine! I have a 10 gallon tank and it had a divider between. At first I was hesitant of removing the divider but I gave it a shot. They don’t fight at all. They are so calm toward each other. My brother bought me a female betta later on and I didn’t have a tank for her, so I added it to the one I already had (don’t worry I’ll buy a bigger tank soon) and I was pretty shocked. They all get along great. I am constantly keeping an eye on how they react with each other. At first the male was aggressive toward the female (I kinda expected it so I was ready to take her out of there) but then it seemed like he was scared of her. It’s been 2 weeks and they are all getting along just fine. I don’t see them fighting... I sometimes catch them 3 in one corner just chilling. I WILL buy a bigger tank for them tho because I know a 10 gallon tank isn’t big enough for the 3 fishes so I am saving money rn for it. 🙂 do I guess it depends on your fish’s personality
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