Lethargic (and possibly injured) Convict Cichlid

SalviniCichlidFan

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Hey y'all,

My convict cichlid has recently been sick I suppose

Symptoms:
1) Very lethargic lately: He lays straight up on the gravel (but doesn't turn and rest on his side which is good) for most of the time
2) Only during feedings, does he swim around to get food (which he struggles at because he is blind)
3) I found that he is having a harder time eating food
4) His swimming is more awkward and jerky than before
5) His fins are tattered and shortened by aggression from a Demasoni cichlid that I later removed
6) He is blind, but this was a condition from a long-long time ago before I bought the fish

So what do you all think is the reason that he sick?

My guesses:
1) Old age: At the fish store, he was likely a donation so he may have been somewhat old. (This is the guess that I think is most true)
2) Aggression: The demasoni cichlid's aggression could have gave him stress, though the demasoni also attacked my firemouth much more, but the firemouth was fine afterwards.
3) Shortened fins: The demasoni nipped at the convict's fins a lot, to the point that they were shortened. This may cause difficulty swimming.
4) Ich?: I know that when fish first have ich, they are lethargic. However, the other fish in the tank are very active and there are no white spots + clamping of fins.

Below is a picture of the convict cichlid: You can see that his fins are quite tattered.

Screen Shot 2022-06-25 at 11.58.00 PM.png
 

Deadeye

Goliath Tigerfish
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Aug 31, 2020
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Fish looks thin like it hasn’t been getting a lot to eat recently.
Aggression is most likely the cause here. In a tank full of various cichlids, they are bound to fight, and weaker ones will be picked on the most.
 
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tlindsey

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Hey y'all,

My convict cichlid has recently been sick I suppose

Symptoms:
1) Very lethargic lately: He lays straight up on the gravel (but doesn't turn and rest on his side which is good) for most of the time
2) Only during feedings, does he swim around to get food (which he struggles at because he is blind)
3) I found that he is having a harder time eating food
4) His swimming is more awkward and jerky than before
5) His fins are tattered and shortened by aggression from a Demasoni cichlid that I later removed
6) He is blind, but this was a condition from a long-long time ago before I bought the fish

So what do you all think is the reason that he sick?

My guesses:
1) Old age: At the fish store, he was likely a donation so he may have been somewhat old. (This is the guess that I think is most true)
2) Aggression: The demasoni cichlid's aggression could have gave him stress, though the demasoni also attacked my firemouth much more, but the firemouth was fine afterwards.
3) Shortened fins: The demasoni nipped at the convict's fins a lot, to the point that they were shortened. This may cause difficulty swimming.
4) Ich?: I know that when fish first have ich, they are lethargic. However, the other fish in the tank are very active and there are no white spots + clamping of fins.

Below is a picture of the convict cichlid: You can see that his fins are quite tattered.

View attachment 1498126
Only suggestion is to isolate but tbh it's a very slim chance the Convict Cichlid will make it.
Also most African Cichlid especially Mbuna specie are highly aggressive I made the mistake of mixing but never again. The Demasoni probably attacked the Convict because it looks similar imo.
 
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SalviniCichlidFan

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May 30, 2021
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Only suggestion is to isolate but tbh it's a very slim chance the Convict Cichlid will make it.
Also most African Cichlid especially Mbuna specie are highly aggressive I made the mistake of mixing but never again. The Demasoni probably attacked the Convict because it looks similar imo.
Yeah I was thinking the same, cause both demasoni and convicts have black vertical bars. Why is it that my 5.5-inch yellow lab can be mixed safely with the other cichlids, while my 3 inch demasoni can't? How is it that my larger yellow lab does not attack other fish often, while my 3 inch demasoni terrorizes my 6 inch firemouth?
 

Deadeye

Goliath Tigerfish
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Yeah eating is a problem that I am facing. The convict always gets outcompeted by the other fish because he's blind and not as fast.
A blind fish really shouldn’t be mixed with other competitive eaters. It’s basically a death sentence.
Yeah I was thinking the same, cause both demasoni and convicts have black vertical bars. Why is it that my 5.5-inch yellow lab can be mixed safely with the other cichlids, while my 3 inch demasoni can't? How is it that my larger yellow lab does not attack other fish often, while my 3 inch demasoni terrorizes my 6 inch firemouth?
Rift lake cichlids are not all the same in temperament. Labs are one of the most placid mbuna, and generally get along well with others. Demansoni are a much meaner species and are far less tolerant of others. It will only get meaner as it grows.
 

duanes

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I kept a breeding colony of demasoni in a 75 gal tank, they were one of my favorites of that ilk from Africa, but....
although they were good as a species only colony, they were never great with other cichlids (especially vertically stripe ones).
And although many people consider convicts tough, I don't consider them at all equip to deal with the inate, territorial aggression of de-masoni (maybe if the tank is over 100 gallons).
And as a single individual, they often become hyper aggressive, because they live naturally in colonies of their own kind which they defend vigorously en masse.
I'm not at all surprised it could push around your FM, even if the FM is 3 times the demasoni's size.
And similar in color and shape, its tendency to attack the con is not at all surprising, but expected.

What size is the tank?
To me, as a general rule, keeping African cichlids in the same tank as Central Americans is not usually a good idea unless they are drastically different in shape, and color.
 
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