How to Create the Ideal African Cichlid Tank March 29 2019

How to Create the Ideal African Cichlid Tank

Part of the fun (and challenge) of keeping African Cichlids is knowing how to set up a proper tank environment for your fish to thrive and be admired. A well-designed African Cichlid Tank must — at minimum — take into account tank size, water temperature and pH, and more. This article offers some of the most essential tips to get you up and running.

African Cichlid Tank Image

Tank Size

Most African Cichlids originate from giant lakes in Africa, where thousands of species are known to exist. At full maturity, an African Cichlid, such as the Frontosa, can reach up to 13 inches in length, which translates in tank size to a minimum of 55-75 gallons.

Keep this size in mind when shopping for a new tank, as it's much easier to buy a tank that's big enough for your fish to grow into rather than the hassle of rehoming them later on. Also keep in mind that some African Cichlids can be aggressive, so it's best to group similar species together in the same tank.

Water Temperature

A successful African Cichlid tank has just as much to do with the water as it does the fish. Ideal water temperatures for cichlids fall in the nice and balmy range of 76°F - 82°. Make sure the aquarium water heater you choose is rated (in watts) for the size of your aquarium.

Water pH

Proper water chemistry is also vital to Cichlid survival. The optimal water pH for an African Cichlid tank is slightly alkaline, between 7.8 and 8.6 (7.0 is neutral on a 1-14 scale). This pH level is quite a bit higher than the average tap water found in the eastern half of US, which means you'll need a way to buffer the pH levels.

One of the most ideal methods for buffering pH levels in an African Cichlid tank is to use an all-natural stone product called Texas Holey Rocks. These white limestone rocks buffer your tank without the hassle or mess of chemical buffering products. They also create a striking white backdrop to highlight the gorgeous, vibrant colors of your cichlids.

Unlike synthetic holey rocks — which only last about 24-36 months — Texas Holey Rocks retain their value and beauty for a lifetime. They are easy to buy and install, and come with a 100% money back guarantee.

We hope these tips help you create your ideal African Cichlid tank. For more info, read our Guide & Tips on How to Care for Cichlids, or browse our selection of Texas Holey Rock aquarium kits. Shipping is free!