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Ok so it looks like I have been bitten by the Geophagus appreciation bug and Baaaaad.

So bad that I am seriously considering redoing my new tank set up now to suit these beautiful little buggers.

Changing over the substrate shouldn't be too hard after I take out my current stock and stash 'em while I add new substrate.

Would my current stock be compatible at all?

3 Honey Dwarf Gouramis, 3 Widow Tetras, 3 Pakistani Loaches, 3 BN's and 15 Neons that I know would become food very quickly but I could move them to my Shrimp tank and the others to my new gold fish tank which will be 24x18x18inches.

I also have a 20L bucket full of crushed coral that I can add in to buffer or bulk up. Photo below of my current substrate: 5mm river gravel, There is approximately 130kg of the stuff in the tank.

5069edfd-d311-43f2-b663-d8149fd6b42a.jpg

I was aiming for an Angel Tank but now I want (at least 6) Geos too and a second big tank (3 foot plus) is not an option.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. This will happen I just need to make sure I do it right and not tick off the Mrs in the process. I have already been in trouble for looking at new substrate tonight. The plus is she likes the way these babies look so I'm halfway there, just have to get her past the redecoration.

Also my build thread here

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welcome to the forum :)

first off you will want to get the substrate sorted, arguably the most important part of keeping geophagus (minus the water). any kind of fine sand will do, it sounds weird to say but some sands can come across as really rough, a few examples would be tahitian moon sand, or any of the instant aquarium range of sands from carib-sea, other than that most sands are fine in my experience.

river sand or play sand are my favourites to use, i like the play sand as it is so fine and makes it fun to watch the geos go around foraging for food, looks good but not totally necessary.

probably leave the crushed coral out, no real need for it. yes it will bulk up the substrate, but will also buffer the PH. Geos can live with a high PH but really do best at the lower ranges.

as for stocking, keeping the B/N with geos shouldnt be a problem really, unless the b/n are realllyyyyyy small. the honey dwarf gouramis should do fine, i have kept them with geos in the past. they seem to hang at a different water margin so i found them to be a pretty good tankmate for goes (such a generalisation). widdow tetras, yeah will do fine. pakistani loaches.... mmmm... i have in the past owned a few insane ones that would regularly attack american cichlids, not sure if it was a freak of loaches or if it is the norm for these guys. none the less it still used to stress the hell out of my americans and is certainly a species i wouldnt keep with docile americans again.

the next, and most fun part is to narrow down which of the geophagus species you want to keep.

i am guessing you already have a good idea, but here are a few just the help things along.

surinamensis

Geophagus%20surinamensis1.jpg

'orange head' tapajos

tapajosRed1.jpg

steindachneri

zpostIMG_3891copy.jpg

(satanoperca, not geophagus, but none the less is still a geophaginae) leucosticta (photo by the dreaded.......)

Satanoperca_leucosticta_II_by_junkpile.jpg

jurupari (as above)

satanoperca-jurupari_0.jpg

have a look, see what you like then start the real planning ;)

post-7819-14711632014808_thumb.jpg

Edited by Betta-Cray_z

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So I like the Altifrons, Surinamensis and the Tapajos also the Brachybranchus. I would be happy with any of these and only 1 species in the tank.

I will change the substrate to suit the fish. I went with the gravel as it was what I knew and was suitable for the fish I was looking at at the time.

For the sand to replace the gravel Pool or River? For the pool sand, where is the best place or brand. From a landscape supplier: Coarse river sand or pit sand or bedding sand?

and how deep should I make the sand, my gravel is currently 7 cm deep. Would it be suitable to just leave it and add a layer of sand over the top or to take off a few cm and then add a top layer of sand?

Sorry to ask so many questions, I have invested a lot of time into the current set-up and now to change it I just want to get this right this time as they are really beautiful fish and if I have the chance to do this now, I want to do it right as I kind of regret my current set-up and to top it off I was going to use sand originally. cant change my original decision but I can revise what I do from here on in.

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So I like the Altifrons, Surinamensis and the Tapajos also the Brachybranchus. I would be happy with any of these and only 1 species in the tank.

Geophagus altifrons:

Extremely and increasingly difficult to find in this country. You'll often see FS ads of "Altifrons". But 99.9% will not be Altifrons. There are also several variants of Altifrons.

Geophagus surinamensis:

You will not find these in this country or pretty much any where on earth. You will see "Surinamensis" labelled in just about every LFS in this country. For some reason they refuse to label the fish correctly. Most of the mislabelled fish are Geophagus brachybranchus.

Geophagus sp. "Tapajos Orange Head":

Readily available and sometimes mislabelled or confused with a similar species (Geophagus sp. "Araguaia Orange Head"). Quality does vary in this species.

Geophagus brachybranchus:

One of the more commonly available Geophagus available. However, quality does vary.

Satanoperca leucosticta:

Can be found easily enough but often labelled as "Satanoperca jurupari".

Satanoperca jurupari:

Most likely do not exist in this country.

There are other Geophagus or similar species available which are just as interesting and beautiful. e.g.

Geophagus sp. "Pindare"

Geophagus sp. "Rio Branco"

Acarichthys heckelii

I will change the substrate to suit the fish. I went with the gravel as it was what I knew and was suitable for the fish I was looking at at the time.

For the sand to replace the gravel Pool or River? For the pool sand, where is the best place or brand. From a landscape supplier: Coarse river sand or pit sand or bedding sand?

and how deep should I make the sand, my gravel is currently 7 cm deep. Would it be suitable to just leave it and add a layer of sand over the top or to take off a few cm and then add a top layer of sand?

I would remove the gravel or at least 3/4 of it as Geophagus must be able to filter the substrate through their gills. It's just plain cruel and unhealthy to not allow it IMO.

I have never used pool filter sand or play sand but a lot do. I guess because it's a cheaper option. I use and recommend a fine white sand and/or a tan coloured, fine river sand. (Photos of both sand types here).

7cm deep should be fine but maybe 10cm would be better as the fish will have more to filter through.

PM me for more details or info on these sands.

Hope that helps.

Edited by ozmo
spelling corrections

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Good to see another convert, the geos are coming back.

On a side note [MENTION=5428]ozmo[/MENTION] have you seen araguaia here?

I only ask as there was someone around 7-8 years ago selling both types of orange head out of the same tank,

Depending on what you asked for, they were all bred from the same pair.

Cheers mick

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[MENTION=885]smicko[/MENTION]

I believe I have both species. Some I have separated and some in a display tank with various other geophagus. I haven't bred them though and don't let them breed with Tapajos in the display.

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Araguaia were here, I had a colony a few years back, I got it to spawn a few times before they were sold to a mate who had them in a display.

I don't know if they bred for him or what.

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