I have a 180 gallon tank I've recenly set up as a cichlid tank. In its former life, this used to be a saltwater tank but while I was going through my divorce, my $100 skimmer pump went out and I didnt have the $ to replace it and within 2 daysthe whole tank crashed. I was broken-hearted so the tank sat empty for about 5 years. Now I have a 10 month old daughter and decided to set it back up for the both of us, but thus time as a freshwater. I've always thought cichlids were beautiful and I have a good size tank for them. I'm using a lot of the materials from when I had a reef tank. I have a sump, but since both the return pumps no longer work, I capped the holes drilled in the bottom of the overflows and am using hang on back filters instead. I have non-silica sand and crushed coral on the bottom and about 400 pounds of (formerly) live rock arranged so there ate lots of caves. The front middle part is just sand so I can also have a few non-mbunas. I had planned on doing a fishless cycle, but I found a guy on craigs list giving away 5 cichlids that had outgrown his tank for $5 apiece, so I couldn't pass it up. He didnt know what kind they are, just lake Malawi. There are 4 males, 4-5" long and a 3" female. I think the largest is a red zebra (orange with spots on the fins). There is also a metallic blue one with turquoise around the jaw and mouth and a turqouise spot above and to the right of it eye. It also has a distinctive blue stripe along the top of the dorsal fin. The third one is dark blue with black fins and a white stripe along the top. The other is not as colorful, mostly tan with slightly darker stripes. His head and fins are black and he has a white stripe along the top. I think he is a Aulonocara. I believe the female is the same kind he is. I also purchased a small bright yellow one from wal mart but within days he developed stripes and his body is turning blue. He has a single yellow egg spot. I thought I had him identified as a Cynotilapia sp. "lion" but now I don't know. I will post pictures soon so you all can help me with IDing everything. I've been doing 10% water changes everyday and added bacteria while the tank is cycling. So far so good. At first, the only fish that came out with any regularity was the Aulonocara. When I added the small yellow one, I don't know if it was just coincidence that the other fish were getting bolder or if his personality caused the others to come out more. I have a few plants, but mostly sand and rock. I'm not sure how much to feed them. I have medium sized cichlid pellets, tiny ones and some flakes. At first I was overfeeding cuz I had to scoop out extra, but lately there are no extra. I feed them 3 times a day. I hope eventually to get the sump up and running if you think it would be worth it. How does it sound like I'm doing so far? I've had the fish in there about a week so far and of course will not be adding more until the cycle is complete. I'd like to add something green or red next. Any thought or suggestions on improvements or tank mates much appreciated!!