Description: 6' 125g planted Mbuna Cichlid tank. Rena XP4 primary filtration with Eheim Professional (using Fluval surface skimmer intake) plus powerheads. 48" 4x65w power compact florescent light fixture (2x 10,000k + 2x Actinic).
Advice: For those considering starting an African Cichlid tank: Do your research, lots and lots of it. Expect a few hiccups, as that is just part of the game. It's imperative that you get the male/female ratio correct with each species (for Mbuna it's 1 male for every 4 females). It can take time to get this ratio correct, as the best way to stock is by buying unsexed juveniles and letting them grow up together until you can spot males vs females. I actually convinced a fish keeping friend of mine to start a Malawi tank so that I could give any fish I needed to get rid of to him. Made it much easier.
Also, Mbuna love rocks to hide in, but if you are starting with juveniles it's best to keep the tank somewhat bare until you get your ratios correct, unless you don't mind removing everything whenever you need to remove a fish from the tank. They can be hard to catch lol. If you have aggression in the tank due to improper ratios, that leads to illness and death. Which brings me to the most important thing, medication. Order a large amount online (you can get it in powder form, in jugs) to keep on-hand in case illness pops up in the tank. I learned this the hard way. They did not have the medication anywhere near me in town, so I had to order it. I ended up having a full wipe in the tank and had to start over. Now I keep a jug of the stuff always.
Side-note: To anyone just starting out, check craigslist for tank setups. My 125 was purchased this way from a gentleman who was moving. It was fully set up with everything, stand, canopy, and all necessary equipment. Got it for $200! So,,, obviously a super deal compared to buying new.
Fish Kept: Blue Cobalts, Yellow Labs, Rustys, and more to come. Also keeping bristlenose pleco and synodontis catfish.
Corals/Plants: Assorted Anubis. Jungle Vallis, and various Swords. Assorted volcanic rock with sand substrate and a large manzanita branch.