Japes' 2010 Eartheater Work/Photolog


Blue Tier VIP
Original poster
MFK Member
Hey guys,

With 2010 comes a new year of plans for both of my display tanks. I was initially considering shutting down my "Tapajos" biotope, moving my Essequibo biotope into a 5x2x2 where it currently is, and putting together a few 3x18x18's biotopes based around Apistogramma or Laetacara, but the amount of work required in the process put me off it.

The point of this thread is to keep it constantly updated with any information and photographs I take throughout the year.

Currently both tanks are in a state where I'm quite happy with them, although I need to sell off some of my S. leucosticta over the coming months as I'd always planned to. Unfortunately room is a bit of an issue with my current living arrangements and I don't have anywhere safe and unobtrusive to set up fry tanks for both of my breeding Eartheater colonies.

Anyway, I'll get into some photos.

I'll sort them by tanks:

140G Rio Essequibo, Guyana Biotope
- 48x24x28" Glass
- Custom DIY PVC Overflow to a 20G Custom Glass Sump, 10L Seachem Matrix, 500mL Seachem Purigen, 250 Bioballs powered by a Pentair QuietOne 3000.
- 2x 2x54W 10000K T5HO Reflectors with only one running most of the time.
- Heated by an Eheim Jager 300W.
- Decor: Various Driftwood on Fine Playsand Substrate, w/ Terminalia catappa (Indian Almond) leaves.

9x Satanoperca leucosticta
25x Hyphessobrycon rosaceus "Rosy Tetra"
29x Hemigrammus erythrozonus "Glowlight Tetra"
7x Corydoras panda (WTB Corydoras melanistius)

Dominant male (sexually mature, 15.5cm TL)

Flirting between a sub-dominant male (or possibly female) and breeding female, while the male was holding.

75G Rio Tapajos/Rio Amazonas Biotope
- 60x15x20" Glass
- Eheim Classic 2217 + Eheim Classic 2215 with alternate Eheim Catalogue fittings and additional JBL Micromec Media, as well as 200mL Seachem Purigen.
- 2x54W 10000K + 8500K T5HO Reflector.
- Heated by an Eheim Jager 250W.
- Decor: Mangrove Root Tangles on Fine Playsand Substrate, w/ Terminalia catappa (Indian Almond) leaves, Anubias and floating Large Sprite.

6x Geophagus sp. "Araguaia Orange Head" (3M 3F)
42x Hyphessobrycon pulchripinnis "Lemon Tetra"
8x Nannostomus beckfordi "Golden Pencilfish"
8x Corydoras julii
5x Otocinclus hoppei

Male from the primary breeding pair.

Second, although probably dominant male, has quite the temper and likes beating up women.

Few shots since reintroducing leaves.

So, plans for 2010:

Only short term at the moment. Because at this stage I'll be keeping my 4x2 setup in my bedroom, I'm looking for overflow boxes to replace the DIY Overflow to quiet the system and make it more efficient - unfortunately the dimension requirements are quite strict so I'm waiting for a response from one manufacturer and hopefully placing an order if it fits. Have ordered an Eheim Compact+ 3000 and Fluval FX5 Return Nozzles and brackets to re-plumb the whole return as well.

The Tapajos 5x15x20 tank will be getting replaced by a 5x2x2 or 5x2x20 within the next month or two as well. Depending on stand design, I'm hoping to be able to fit a couple of 2x1x1's for fry raising underneath as well.

Will keep you posted.


MFK Member
Feb 22, 2008
Japes, you are the eartheater MASTER!


Blue Tier VIP
Original poster
MFK Member
Sorry to bump my own thread, but I'd like to use this space to leave a message for those viewing the thread and considering getting into Eartheaters. As many of you have most definitely gathered, I'm a very particulate person and it reflects in how I setup and look after my tanks and fish.

I've received numerous messages, private or otherwise, from other hobbyists who have gotten themselves hooked on keeping Eartheaters because of some of my photographs of my fish and setups. I think this is fantastic, as Eartheaters are a very much underrated family of Cichlid and due to their peacefulness the potential for setups involving them is very extensive. I'm honestly flattered when I receive these comments, especially when they're from keepers who have properly done their research, planned their tanks well, and ended up with a quality setup.

Unfortunately this isn't always the case, so I'll leave you with this message. If you like Eartheaters and want to get into them, please follow the advice of a few of the more experienced keepers here on MFK and other forums such as Eartheaters.com or Cichlid-Forum.com. The constant threads started by people who don't know any better, receiving advice from people who don't know any better depress me, so I thought I'd leave this here.

When it all boils down to it I am far from an expert, I just take some pretty good photos of some pretty nice fish. I do however know suitable setups when I see them and the amount of Eartheaters I see on this forum and others kept in conditions that I would consider in violation of this suitability frustrates me to no end.

Eartheaters are not the kind of fish you can just throw into any setup and hope for the best. If you want to keep them, please design a tank around them, not visa versa. Research thoroughly before you buy.



MFK Member
Sep 1, 2007
Raleigh, NC
Love the update Japes. I know I've said it countless time before, but you have some of the nicest fish and tanks I've ever seen. Well done!