The Green Terror

Common Name: Green Terror
Latin Name: Aequidens rivulatus
Origin: Ecuador, Peru,
Temperature: 70F-75F
Ease Of Keeping: tempermental
Aggressivness: aggressive
Adult Size: 10 inchs
Minimum Tank Size: 32 inchs

Should I or Shouldn’t I? This is the main question that anyone who owns a peaceful cichlid tank has to ask themselves honestly before going for the purchase. Reading through web pages of information on the terror I noticed a mix of both good and bad comments. In the end I decided to buy one. When I came back from the lfs, I put him in the tank and immediately setup a hospital tank, actually this was a medium sized pastic container, with a heater and a small filter in. With cichlids I never leave anything to chance. All seemed well at first, he was getting the initial bullying from all the other cichlids, but I knew he could take it and that in a matter of days the tables would turn his way. And soon enough they did, on his second day in the tank he had established himself as the fourth most dominant cichlid and he had become much more confident when feeding. What I failed to notice is that he had taken a disliking to one of my male firemouths. With allot to do I le!
ft the tank in naivity only to come back later and find my firemouth practically exhausted and near death. And so the hospital tank was immediately used, but it was too late and unfortunately he died. And he was such a beautiful fish. Back to the tank and the green terror had settled down, It was a surprise, I had half expected to be over filling my hospital tank, but he was actually living in cohesion with the rest of the fish, he is no trouble at all. I don’t have any idea why he had picked on the one firemouth, because he has left the others alone. Up to now the tank has become very stable and all seems well, he gets pushed around a bit, but he also does some of the pushing too. But as I say for cichlid tanks, this is peaceful, no damage on any of the fish, and the odd chase to keep things interesting.

My tank inhabitants in order of dominance are as follows

1 Black Shark 10″
1 Quetzel 8″
1 Red head cichlid 5″
1 fully grown Sajica 4.5″
1 Green Terror Silver saum 4.5″
1 West African Devil 4″
1 Chocolate Cichlid 3″
Pair of convicts 5″
1 Tinfoil Barb 8″
1 Silver dollar 5″

At this point the tank is pretty peaceful for cichlid standards, and I put it down to my secret. Believe it or not I had to black widow tetras in with these fish, but I removed them before I put the terror in. I always buy the fish as small as possible, and and try as much to have the same grow up with each other, even though the quetzel could easily have munched the tetras down in one he never did, he had kown them his whole life and for that reason had been conditioned to never seeing them as food, however when buying the terror which was already a medium sized cichlid, I knew that he wouldn’t hesitate to gobble em up. I also plan my tank to have a peaceful leader, in this case the black shark and the quetzel. And I introduce the cichlids known for being highly aggressive last, and I always make sure they are significantly smaller than the leader, this way he’ll be pushed to the back of the queue as far as tank dominance is concerned. At this point in time my tank is!
peaceful maybe in a year or two when the growth of these fish has increased there will be different politics in the tanks, and again a switch around will be needed but hey if you want cichlids, then this is all part of the fun.