Showing posts with label South American Cichlids. Show all posts
Showing posts with label South American Cichlids. Show all posts



female Apistogramma nijsseni in mating colors
Female Apistogramma nijsseni in mating colors (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
New World Cichlids can be found in the continents of North America, South America, and Central America. These fish make wonderful pets due to their unique colors, their interesting personalities, and the ease with which they may be maintained.

The angelfish is one of the most common New World cichlids. A South American cichlid, the angelfish is beautiful and queenly but needs very specific water conditions. Angelfish are generally triangular-shaped with long, string-like fins trailing behind them and sometimes a stripe or two across their backs.

Another common New World cichlid is the convict, so named because of its feisty temperament. Convict cichlids may be bullies but they can live in a wide variety of aquarium conditions and are easy to keep and breed. Convicts can be identified by their light blue bodies and the dark black, zebra stripes across their backs.

The Jack Dempsey is also a favorite among cichlid lovers. Like the convict, the Jack Dempsey can be moody, and as an adult, he can grow up to nearly a foot in length. Jack Dempseys are dark brown but males usually have splashes or dots of bright blue or green on their sides and humps on their foreheads. Jack Dempseys are easy to keep and need large open spaces as well as caves to hide in.

English: Oscar (Astronotus ocellatus), a popul...
Oscar (Astronotus ocellatus), a popular aquarium fish from South America.  (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
In the wild, North and Central American cichlids are found in rivers and lakes. Some lay their eggs in the sand of the river bottoms while others lay them simply on top of rocks at the bottom of the lake in which they reside. Some even make their homes in tiny underwater caves and tunnels. South American cichlids are usually found in water conditions that are more acidic such as black water regions in the Amazonian basin.

The aquarium requirements for these types of fish vary according to their natural habit. North and Central American cichlids are more adept at adapting to vary aquarium conditions but need good hiding places or caves in their aquarium for refuge. These should not be kept in any tank with a length of fewer than 48 inches.

The South American cichlid usually needs much more specific water conditions in the aquarium in which it is kept. The pH balance of the water needs to be quite low - sometimes as low as six - and the water itself needs to be very soft. Plants are popular with the South American cichlid, although certain species may cause havoc to underwater plants.

One of the best things about New World cichlids is that there are so many from which to choose. The variety available among these species of fish is simply astounding and there is always something new to discover. New World cichlid fish can be a joy to take care of and a delight to own.



Parachromis managuensis 2012 G1.jpg
Native to South American freshwaters, the Jaguar Cichlid (Parachromis managuensis) is as aggressive as its name suggests. For this reason, one must be careful not to put them into a tank with smaller species; it will attack them. During the breeding period, their aggression is heightened and they may even attack larger species. Providing a separate tank during breeding, or at the very least a tank partition will be beneficial to your entire fish population.

The Jaguar Cichlid can live for 15 years and males can reach sizes over 12 inches. Females will rarely exceed 12 inches in size, but these fish will need a relatively large aquarium, not less than 180 gallons if breeding or kept with other fish. Water temperatures should be kept between 77F and 97F with a pH level between 7.0 and 8.7.

If you want a Jaguar cichlid and you want to reduce it's aggressive behavior (which you can only do to a certain extent) then replicating their natural environment and water chemistry is a must. When I say natural environment, I mean the substrate of their habitat, the plants that are found in their favorite swimming areas, the types of rocks or driftwood and even the pace of the current. You can add a current to your aquarium by installing special jets with an adjustable flow-rate. Water chemistry includes pH, water temperature, water hardness and water clarity.

As a predatory fish, the Jaguar Cichlid prefers live food but may be trained to consume pellets as well. These fish reach maturity when they are about 4 inches in size and at this point are ready to breed. Males will lose the stripes on their body when mature. In keeping with their aggressive nature, males may become violent even with the females when breeding so it may be necessary to divide the tank in a way that the female may reach the male, but not vice versa. You can do this by installing a plastic divider in the aquarium. The divider needs to have one or two holes that are big enough for the female to swim through, but too small for the male to fit. This will allow the female to interact with the male when she wants to and swim away to protect herself when she needs to.

Jaguar Cichlids double in population every 1 to 4 years and are sought after for food and trade alike. Be sure you can accommodate the special needs of a Jaguar Cichlid before you make the decision to add them to your aquarium.


FIREMOUTH CICHLID - One of the Best Fish For Aquarium Beginners

English: Cichlasoma meeki
Thorichthys (Cichlasoma) meeki (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The Firemouth Cichlid, Thorichthys Meeki, comes from Central American areas such as Mexico and Belize. It is also known as the Red Breasted Cichlid. They are named such due to the fiery coloration on the underside of their mouths and from the tail to the mouth, it has a vivid red throat and belly.

On average their size is about 6 inches but they can grow larger and on the whole are a good fish for beginners to aquariums to work with and they can live up to 15 years. Water temperature should be between 75°F and 80°F and the pH between 6.5 and 7.5 although they are a pretty durable fish and can adapt to many water types. Water will need weekly changes of at least 15% to 20%.

Like most Cichlids, the Firemouth is carnivorous and prefers live foods such as brine shrimp, bloodworms or crickets. They are not picky though and will eat frozen food, pellets, and flakes happily. Be sure to feed food that has a good protein content and vary the type of food given so that the fish can receive a mixture of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals to stay healthy. In the case of baby Firemouth, a mixture of baby brine shrimp and crushed flakes should suffice.

Since the Firemouth fish likes to hide, it is good to include broken flower pots and piles of rocks for them to enjoy the nooks and crannies. Some water plants can be used but the Firemouth likes to dig in the substrate and so can easily damage or kill plants unless the plants are potted. The Firemouth Cichlid prefers a sandy tank bottom with broken driftwood but leaves an open area in the center of the tank for them to swim in.

Firemouth Cichlid is egg layers and prefers to do so on flat rocks or overturned flowerpots and they can get extremely aggressive during their breeding period. In general, they can be highly territorial and aggressive towards other fish and so should be monitored if in the same tank as other species or if you have more than a pair of them.

Always keep a close eye when introducing fish into the same aquarium as the territorial battles can result in stress and death.


Tips on BLOOD PARROT CICHLID Care and Breeding

English: A Picture of my large Blood Parrot It...
A Picture of my large Blood Parrot
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The blood parrot cichlid should not be confused with the parrot cichlid (Hoplarchus Psittacus). Blood parrot cichlids have no binomial nomenclature (scientific designation) to identify them by. Nor do they have a natural habitat. Why you may ask? Blood parrots are a man-made hybrid. They are, in fact, one of the only two fish species found within the Exotic-Aquariums Fish Care and Breeding Guide entirely of man-made origins. Although their parental lineage was never documented and remains shrouded in mystery, the blood parrot was first created in Taiwan around 1986.

Prevalent speculation points to the following cichlid species as the potential candidates of parental origins; the redhead cichlid (Cichlasoma synspilum) and the Midas cichlid (Amphilophus citrinellus) or a coupling between the red devil cichlid (Amphilophus labiatus) and the severum (Heros Severus). Despite the fact that all of the aforementioned species are native to either Central or South America, the blood parrot is considered an Asian cichlid because of the geographical location of its hybridization.

Regardless of the point of origin or parental ancestry, blood parrot cichlids have stirred up almost as much controversy as their man-made counterparts, the glofish. Unlike the glofish, blood parrots are a product of selective breeding rather than genetic manipulation. As such they have not banned for sale in most countries as a genetically engineered species. The subject of the controversy revolves around the anatomical deformities inherent in the hybridization of this previously nonexistent subspecies.

Perhaps the most physically detrimental deformity relates to the hybrid's narrow, beak-like mouth. Its vertical mouth opening makes it hard for the fish to feed and leaves it vulnerable to possible starvation. Blood parrots compensate for this deformity by using their throat muscles to finish pulverizing their food. Additional deformities include malformed swim bladders which result in erratic swimming patterns, unnaturally large often misshapen irises and deformed spinal columns that contribute to the fish's unique shape. To add further fuel to the controversy, many breeders inject the fish with colored dyes to increase the intensity and diversity of its color palette and enhance its overall marketability marketing them under the trade name Bubblegum Parrot.

This same practice was also used to transform Indian glassfish into the once very popular Disco fish. The dying of fish for commercial resale is detrimental to the fish's health and frequently shortens their life expectancy. Practical Fishkeeping has been instrumental in exposing these practices to the general public. As a result of many fish stores and online retailers no longer stock the modified variations of these fish.

Although blood parrots were a product of the 80s they were not widely available in pet shops until 2000. Many avid fish enthusiasts were opposed to the sale of these creatures on ethical grounds due to the inherent deformities resulting from their creation. Fish stores who stocked these hybrids were even boycotted. Said boycotts only met with limited success. Some store owners simply cannot afford not to carry this inventory because of the high price tag they fetch. Ethical principles and genetic deformities aside, blood parrots frequently live for 10 years and have been reported to live as long as 15 years of age.

If you are not ethically opposed to owning a blood parrot then you should be aware that this is one of the larger cichlids. Blood parrots commonly grow 8-10 inches in length. A single fish will require a minimum aquarium size of 50 gallons. When kept as a community fish, you will need a substantially larger tank. Care should be exercised when choosing their tank mates. Blood parrots should not be housed with large aggressive fish. They should not be forced to compete for food or turf in a community setting. Angelfish, catfish, danios and larger variety tetras make suitable tank mates.

Blood parrots should be provided with ample room and adequate hiding places so that they can establish their own territorial boundaries. Driftwood, rock work and larger aquarium d├ęcor are excellent options. Like many cichlids, these fish are prone to dig up gravel. Choosing a smaller, less course substrate is recommended. These fish tend to function best under subdued lighting. This is attributed to iris irregularities inherent in their breeding.

South American cichlids prefer soft water environments with a ph balance around 6.8. Water temperature should be maintained between 78-86 °F. Lower temperature ranges could result in a loss of coloration.

The blood parrot is an omnivorous cichlid. They will readily accept a wide variety of foods. They are more adept at consuming sinking rather than floating food offerings. Standard food fare can be supplemented with bloodworms and brine shrimp. Commercial products high in b-carotene and canthaxanthin will help enhance and maintain their coloration. These fish are voracious eaters. They are known for generating a large amount of uneaten food debris in a short period of time. A good filtration system combined with frequent water changes and substrate maintenance is a must to keep nitrate levels in check.

Breeding Blood Parrot Cichlids

Although Parrots have been known to mate and even lay eggs, generally they are infertile. Male blood parrots are typically infertile. There have been sporadic cases of successful spawnings, generally when they have been crossed with a non-hybrid fish. The use of a non-hybridized male will increase your rate of success. In commercial breeding, males are injected with hormones to increase fertility rates. Like other cichlids, Blood Parrots will tend the eggs and resulting fry fastidiously. As with any eggs, those that are infertile will turn white and rapidly fungus. The parents will eat infertile eggs to prevent them from spreading the fungus to the fertile eggs.

Once the eggs hatch, daily water changes of 25% are critical to ensuring the health of the fry. Fresh baby brine shrimp are the optimum food during the first couple of weeks. Often pet shops will carry frozen baby brine shrimp, which can also be used. As they fry grow, they can be weaned to finely crushed flake food.

    By Stephen J Broy
    The hottest new trend in aquarium ownership is pet jellyfish. Jellyfish require a specially designed Jellyfish Aquarium Fish Tank to remain alive and healthy. Jellyfish aquariums are easier to maintain than a traditional saltwater tank. Pet Moon Jellyfish have become exceptionally popular in recent years with home aquarists both for their unparalleled elegance and ease of care. The market for moon jellies has increased to the point that two US-based websites are now tank raising these exotic creatures to keep pace with the growing demand.

    Article Source: EzineArticles


SEVERUM CICHLID - Basic Information About the Breed

Green Severum
Green Severum (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
They are scientifically known as the Heros severus and commonly called the green severum, or the Hero cichlid, or even the Banded cichlid. This variety belongs to the family Cichlidae of the South American cichlid. Normally they can grow as much as 8 inches in length at maturity and has a lifespan of approximately 10 years.

They are endemic to South America and can thrive in a 40-gallon aquarium. They do well together with New World Cichlids as tank mates such as the Firemouth, Green terror, Salvini, Texas, Blood Parrots and even Peicos.

Severum cichlids came from the Northern American region of Brazil and appear to have a body shape similar to that of a discus. There are two color variations of these species and that includes Gold severum which was developed out of the green severum. They are originally bred from a pale yellow iridescent color without dark band original color. From the word green, green severum possess a greenish body with a good number of bands on its body.

Severum's thrive well with a water temperature of 72 - 84 degrees Fahrenheit, a pH range from 5.1 - 6.5, and a hardness between 3 - 10 inches. Regularly change about 10 - 20% water change weekly or bi-weekly depending on the number of cichlids in the tank.

Breeding information:
Although they are a peaceful species, they still have the possibility of eating small fish when placed together. Furthermore, severums may be quite difficult to breed compared to the other New World Cichlids because they are hard to pair off and also they do not readily pair off with the females. Sexing female or male severums are hardly recognized merely by its appearance. But they also have features that match that of other cichlid varieties and that is they basically spawn in a particularly clean horizontal surface as well as acting very concern parents to its young. They would patiently guard and take care of their young while growing up.

What is its proper diet?
Severums are omnivorous, they love flake foods, bloodworms, brine shrimp, and cichlid sticks which are considered as its favorite. They also like blanched zucchini, earthworms, or marine crustaceans. However, do not feed beef heart or liver for this food is hard to digest and may cause illness. Feed the food only 2 - 5 pinches in a small amount and in small quantities a day and not at once. This way the quality of water is kept for a long period of time. By letting your fish fast for one day once a week is also advantageous to your pet. Providing severum cichlid with vitamins and supplements which are added to its food may also be beneficial.

    Lacey Bryant is a cichlid enthusiast and author, who has been caring for cichlids for over 20 years. It is her goal to see that all Cichlids are properly cared for.
    Article Source: EzineArticles


UARU - Uaru amphiacanthoides

Uaru - Uaru amphiacanthoides


FIREMOUTH CICHLID - Cichlasoma meeki

FIREMOUTH CICHLID - Cichlasoma meeki



Midascichlid shedd.jpg
Photo: Omnitarian. Licensed under Wikimedia Commons.
A native of the lakes in Costa Rica and Nicaragua the Midas cichlid or Amphilophus Citrinellus is a popular fish of many pet shops and fish owners. It is a large fish that can grow to fourteen inches in length. It is quite beautiful and comes in an array of colors. They are normally yellow, red and white or an assortment of these colors. The Midas cichlid can easily be identified by the nuchal hump which is a feature of the adult male. The female version is not quite as distinguishable. The males have larger fins as well.

This fish likes lots of water. It should be placed in a large tank alone or in pairs. One Midas would be happy in a tank of 75 gallons of water. That should be the minimum amount. If the fish keeper still insists on placing it with other fish the best option would be to put fish of the same size. Any fish that looks to be inferior will surely end up in the stomach. The tank should have lots of rocks and wood. Ceramic pieces and slate will make it very comfortable. Since this is a fish that loves to dig it is not a good idea to place many plants in the tank unless they are plants that will prove difficult for the fish to move. Even if they can't move the plant around they will shred it to pieces.

The Midas Cichlid is omnivorous so it should be fed on protein as well as nonprotein foods. Worms, brine shrimp, processed fish food should be used to feed this fish. Vegetables and plants should also be added to the diet. They should be fed two or three times per day.

This fish has an intense breeding season. The male and female will play with each other for weeks and even months. They rub against each other until the time comes for the female to lay the eggs. The couple works together by digging towards the bottom of the tank where the female will lay the eggs. After laying them in rows the male will fertilize each of them. The male becomes very possessive and may attack the female during this period. To ensure her safety the fish keeper should put dividers in the tank. The male will stay with the eggs until the fry is able to go on their own. Both parents have a habit of eating any eggs that are not hatched.

If given proper treatment the Midas cichlid can live for up to fifteen years. The water should be cleaned regularly and have the correct temperature. They produce a lot of waste so the water should be tested regularly for any contaminants and chemical imbalances that would cause them stress. The recommended temperature is between 75 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. They are prone to Hole-in-the-head disease.

The Midas cichlid is a very interesting fish. They have flourished in captivity. Scientists have been using them to help in the conduct of behavioral research.


Introduction to PARROT CICHLIDS

English: Bloody Parrot, also called the Red Pa...
Bloody Parrot, also called the Red Parrot
(Photo credit: 
Typically speaking there are two kinds of cichlids that belong to the parrot cichlid family, the Hoplarchus Psittacus (Green Parrot) and the Blood Parrot. The Green Parrot Cichlid is known to be the "original" parrot. It is a beautiful green cichlid that originates from the Amazon in South America. Not surprisingly its name came from its big parrot-like mouth. It is known to be less common within the aquarium industry but over the past few years, it is slowly becoming more popular.

The Blood Parrot is noticeably more common in aquarium shops. Interestingly, the Blood Parrot is a fish that has been developed over a few years of selective breeding and when it first came on the scene it was a bright Orange. Nowadays this fish is known to be found in many different colors such as Red, Purple, Blue, Yellow, and Green just to name a few. Given the mass range of selective breeding and colors that have now been produced, there has been a blanket name placed over these multi-colored fish, this is known as the Jellybean Cichlid.

Because the Blood Parrot Cichlid is a man-made hybrid so to speak, knowing the exact origins of this fish become difficult however there is speculation that it might be a cross between the Severum and a Midas Cichlid or Red Devil.

An interesting fact is that it does not have a scientific name due to its hybrid origins, it should also be noted that it will never be given one because of this reason.

Water parameters for this fish are somewhat the same as the original Green Parrot, neutral pH and a temperature of around 26°C or 78°F. Parrot Cichlids have been known to grow to 12 inches in length or more in some rare occasions and can be expected to live for up to 10 years.

Some good Tank Mates for the Parrot Cichlid are as follows;

* Geophagus cichlids,
* Rainbow cichlids,
* Firemouths,
* Severums
* Some Tetra species (make sure they are not fin nippers)

Blood Parrots generally attempt to breed when the water parameters are suitable, and in some cases have been known to attempt to breed every few weeks or so. Unfortunately, the lack of egg fertilization is a common problem associated with these fish and breeding, although consistent might be very unsuccessful.

However more and more people have reported that they have had successful breeding pairs, perhaps this is all a part of their hybrid origins being bred out of them.

    By Craig Wrightson
    If you would like to learn more about Parrot Cichlids and their environment, visit my site African Cichlid Success - NEW eBOOK! Get Instant Access!

    Learn everything you need to know about setting up and maintaining a perfect Cichlid Tank including the unbelievably simple secrets the professional breeders use on caring, feeding, breeding, and diseases!

    Article Source: EzineArticles


JACK DEMPSEY Cichlid - Knowing How And What to Feed?

Jack Dempsey
Jack Dempsey Cichlid - Photo  by Nikonian Novice 
The Jack Dempsey (Rocio octofasciata) cichlid fry may be small but they will tend to sack up crushed flake food or even pulverized cichlid pellets. The first three days of their life they will only absorb the proteins from the food they sack. Even then these tiny creatures will nibble around at things possibly on some microorganisms.

I would prefer the use of an established tank since the good source of microorganisms and bacteria that are covering the gravel or even bare glass bottoms are found. Most beneficial bacteria found in an established aquarium are full of vitamins and minerals unlike in new set-up tanks they are barely present or none at all. Tiny white worms visible on tank glass are not likely to be found in new tanks.

However, even with established tanks, it is still essential to provide a bit of regular food after a few days but if ever the parents are still with the fry they will most likely take care of their young's for a few weeks. Parents will gladly take the food you give, chop it up and spill out tiny crumbs of it through their gills and mouth to their fry. How amazing it is to see both male and female cichlid participate in the feeding process.

But if keepers want to transfer the eggs without the parent's presence, then the aquarist job would be more difficult. When feeding, be certain to crush the food to a powdery form. Be wary that for the first ten days of their life is crucial and many will possibly die. After a week or so they would be large enough to be able to consume on newly hatched Artemia brine shrimp. Micro worms are also an excellent option but remember not to overfeed Jack Dempsey cichlid.

Feed the fry 5 times a day for the first 3 weeks, lesser than that will hinder growth or even weaken health and eventually perish. Remove any debris as soon as possible. Do not be weary to see a brood of 500 fries will end up to 200 in a matter of 4 weeks - this is the call of nature no matter how much care is bestowed on them.

The appropriate size for a nursery is 5 - 10-gallon aquarium for the first month in order to keep fry close to each other during feeding time. Water conditions are tolerable meaning not critical but the conditions of an established tank are important. It must have a temperature of 72 - 82 degrees Fahrenheit and a pH level of 6.5 - 7.2 is adequate for the fry. Maintain that consistency no matter what the parameter of an established tank is.

As they grow larger it is best to transfer them to a larger 20-gallon tank probably after 5 - 6 weeks. Imagine a 20-gallon tank with 150 to 200 Jack Dempsey cichlids, so I guess you have to figure out how to house the rest of them as they mature. It is also reasonable at this time to move back the parents to their original tank.

As the Jack Dempsey cichlid matures larger types of food may also be fed. Find out more about the proper feeding of the mature cichlids.

    Lacey Bryant is a cichlid enthusiast and author, who has been caring for cichlids for over 15 years. She has been breeding Cichlids for years and it has become her passion to share her knowledge about their proper care.
    Article Source: EzineArticles


OSCAR CICHLID - Things To Know About Oscars!

Silent Argument
Oscar Cichlids - Photo  by     Tomi Tapio
The Oscar Cichlid, or otherwise known as "Oscar fish", has been one of the most favorite species of cichlids considered for petting because they are fun to keep and are friendly to their owners. They could easily recognize their owners and be aware of what is happening around them.

They are natives to the different rivers of South America, specifically from the waterways of Peru, Brazil and French Guiana. But before going out to purchase one for a pet, there are important things to know about Oscar Cichlids that you need to consider.

Enthusiasts planning to raise Oscar Cichlids should prepare a large tank, spacious enough to accommodate the immediate growth of this kind of fish. Oscars tend to grow an inch after its eight to the tenth month. Expect them to reach about 10-12 inches in their first year. Gravel is the most recommended substrate for the tanks since they are abundant in Oscar's natural environment.
However, be sure to make use the rounded kind since these types of fish are inclined to dig, and sharp gravel might harm them. Furthermore, there are observations that these fish do not prefer bright lights. Thus, this should also be considered in preparing their tanks.

Hobbyists who are obsessed with decorated tanks should think twice to raise Oscars since they tend to be disastrous pets, often rearranging their aquarium, moving rocks and decors around. These are normal Oscar behaviors. Let them do this for it increases their comfort zone on their surroundings.
Feeding can be an exciting experience since Oscars interact whenever they are fed. They show excitement, swimming eagerly around the tank when they know they will be fed. They eat insects and small crustaceans such as crickets, earthworms, mealworms, and shrimps.

Owners should also understand that Oscars are temperamental. This is the reason why they are considered to have personalities. They show what they are feeling. At one point they can be happy and cheerful, like during feeding, but then they will be moody, retire in one corner or stop eating for a while. Don't be bothered if this happens. This is only a phase and the Oscars will eventually get back to its original jolly selves in time.

Enthusiasts need to be aware that in most cases, Oscars are the non-aggressive type of fish, as compared to another type of cichlids. They show uncommon behavior while inside the tanks but these are oftentimes ritualistic. They can be seen spreading their gills and opening their mouth wide while facing another fish, performing a tug of war. This is actually testing each other's strength or part of a mating ritual. Oscars may also be observed to charge the wall of their aquarium.

They might just think that their reflections are another fish trying to get in their territories. Oscars, like most cichlids, are territorial. They need to be accustomed to their tank mates for a while before they given in. That is the reason why in some cases, it is suggested that Oscars should be bred early with another type of fish for the former to be accustomed to it while growing.

Breeders should also take note that in most cases, it is hard to distinguish a male from a female Oscars. The only indication of a female Oscar is when it becomes pregnant and begins to be bulkier. They lay their eggs on a surface of a rock and will rearrange their space to provide a suitable spawning area in their tanks. The eggs hatch after three days.

Other fish in the tank should be taken out once spawning of the female is observed since they are considered threats by the Oscar mothers. It is advised that owners let their Oscars discover their roles as parents by not removing the eggs and allowing them to figure out what to do. They are generally nourishing and protective parents to their fry, eventually providing good nourishment for the infants.
Since Oscar Cichlids, or Oscar Fish, are expected to live up to 15 years, taking care of them is a commitment an owner should accept. These Oscars would require nourishment, attention, and care. Nevertheless, the Oscars are often times referred to as "river or water dogs" because they somehow behave like dogs, shaking their heads or tails whenever they see their owners.


Fact Sheet: GREEN TERROR - Andinoacara rivulatus

Green Terror 

Andinoacara rivulatus - 20061112.jpg

Common Name: Green Terror
Binominal name: Andinoacara rivulatus (syn Aequidens rivulatus) 
Origin: South America
Family: Cichlidae

Care Level: Moderate

Tank Conditions: 72-80°F; pH 6.5-8.0; KH 9-20

Minimum Tank Size: 50 gallons

Max. Size In Aquarium: Up to 8"

Color Form: Bright Blue, Green, White

Temperament: Semi-aggressive

Diet:  Omnivore

The Green Terror is a beautifully marked cichlid. Its body is a greenish white with many electric blue spots on the chin area. The males of this species have a longer tail fin, which is outlined in red.

The Green Terror requires an aquarium of at least 50 gallons, with a sandy bottom, and rock work that will provide plenty of hiding spots. Live plants should be planted in pots to protect the roots from these fish. The Green Terror is generally peaceful with other fish of similar size, but can get more territorial as it matures.

The Green Terror is an open-breeder and will accept a range of water conditions. The Green Terror readily pairs and the female will take the bigger role in raising the fry. The female will lay the eggs on a cleaned, flat rock. They will spawn about every two weeks if the young are removed from the aquarium.

The Green Terror is omnivorous and will eat most prepared and frozen foods, including freeze-dried bloodworms, tubifex, and ocean plankton, as well as flake food and Cichlid pellets.


RED DEVIL CICHLIDS - Aggressive But Tons of Personality

There are so many tropical fish keepers in this hobby today that own or are looking to own the red devil cichlid. These fish hold a very special place in this wonderful hobby.

English: Amphilophus labiatum, female, in aqua...
Amphilophus labiatum, female, in aquarium
(Photo credit: 
The red devil cichlid also is known as Amphilophus labiatus, is originally from Central America. This cichlid is considered a medium to large cichlid often growing 10-12 inches in their lifetime. Males are often larger and develop a hump on their head as they age.

Red devil cichlids are often purchased from pet stores as a small 2-3 inch fish. Many people bring them home to their tank not knowing the personality of this Central American cichlid. This is the reason for this article. I would like to enlighten you on the unique personality of this awesome cichlid.

Red devil cichlids are extremely aggressive. Often, males will harass and chase females to the point of death. Many red devil owners choose to give this freshwater tropical fish it's own tank because of its hostility towards other fish.

One should be aware of this aggression if you plan to keep multiple fish in the aquarium tank. So many people get attached to this cichlid to only have it turn on them later and kill everything in the tank. If you choose to keep this tropical fish, you will not be disappointed because of their cool personality.

Red devil cichlids are territorial and they will protect what they claim as their part of the tank. This space will depend on each individual fish. Some claim a corner of the tank while others claim one-half to more than 75% of the tank. This cichlid will kill and often eat fish that can fit in their mouths. Do not keep this cichlid with any peaceful smaller fish. I would like for anyone that is interested in this cool cichlid to please be prepared to give it a tank of its own or be prepared to find another home for it later if you cannot handle the aggression. These fish make excellent wet pets and will do well in a tank to themselves.

The red devil cichlid is often known for jumping and leaving out of the water so ensure you have a tight lid or canopy on the tank. Provide plenty of cover and hiding spaces for this prized cichlid.

    The Red Devil Cichlid can be hit or miss depending on the individual fish. Either way, you get a very unique tropical fish that can give you years of happiness and entertainment. To read more about freshwater tropical fish please visit Tropical Fish Success
Article Directory: EzineArticles


SOUTH AMERICAN CICHLID Tank Mates - How to Choose Tank Mates For Cichlids (It's Easy)

Choosing South American Cichlid tank mates is not difficult at all. There are a few things that you need to consider before you make any quick decisions while at your favorite pet store.

The first thing that you must consider is the size of your cichlid species. Obviously, don't choose fish or invertebrates that appear to be able to fit in their mouth. It is not fool proof, but it makes for a good rule of thumb.

The pink oscar fishs
The pink oscar fishs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Secondly, don't choose a species that potentially could be more aggressive than your favorite species of cichlid. For example, Oscars and Angel Fish will generally do just fine together when they are juveniles. But when those Oscars start to get big, those poor Angels won't stand a chance.

Now that I have made a few obvious points about choosing South American Cichlid tank mates, let's get to the point. When I think of South American Cichlid tank mates, I think of catfish. But more specifically I think of the gentle Corydoras. These are absolutely some of my favorite aquarium fish and they make excellent tank buddies for many varieties of Cichlids, even the African varieties.

When choosing corys, make sure you consider the size of your Cichlids. If you have a mature Oscar tank, choosing the smaller types of corys is a bad idea. Your Oscars will love the snack and vacuum them up like skittles. Choose one of the larger varieties like Corydoras aeneus. They will mature at about three inches long and make good tank mates for even the larger varieties of South American Cichlids when the catfish are fully mature of course.

Keep this in mind when choosing South American Cichlid tank mates, Oscars sometimes break the rules. For the best results with Oscars, it is best to raise them with tank mates like corys, while they are both juveniles so that they are conditioned to having each other around. Oh, and make sure you keep at least a half dozen or so of the corys. They like the company and have strength in numbers.

Keeping a South American Cichlid [] tank can be a very enjoyable and rewarding experience. Cichlids can have unique personalities and be quite intelligent, but keeping them healthy and stress-free can be a challenge. Visit [] and find out for yourself the correct and easy way to keep your Cichlids healthy, colorful and stress-free.

Big Al's Aquarium Services, Ltd.


ALTUM ANGELFISH - The Rarest of All

Altum angelfish originally came from Brazil, Venezuela and Colombia. The word Altum is a Latin word means tall and this fits the fish well because it can grow as 30cm/12” in height and they can get long as 15 cm/6”. This angelfish are the sensitive version of angels. They are not that suitable for keeping as pets because of its timid and sensitive tratots plus they could cost a lot ranging from $20-$50. But if you really into this angel, then you must prepare to pay for this amount to acquire this sensitive angel. The suitable and normal rtange of ph for its water is 4.5-6.5 plus they prefer warmer water with temperature of 28-30C/82-86F.

Pterophyllum altum
Pterophyllum altum - Photo by Joel Carnat

Altum Angelfish is one of the largest and colorful cichlids.  They are known for its timid traits that even a small shadow could frighten them. Though they are timid and a bit frightened, when they start to get accustomed to its surroundings, they can be good pet fish. But this fish is not that friendly to smaller fishes in the reefs though they may join the school of other fishes, they still get aggressive and very territorial as they grow older and when they in the breeding stage. It was in the early 1900’s when the first altum angelfish was introduced and establish in America. There have been numerous colors and patterns available in every pet shop, retailers and wholesalers since then.

Altum Angelfish has a habit of always yawning. Their mouths are larger than any angels. These fishes are very rare and most of the times, you will notice some defects on their skin on a pet shop because of the shipping and sometimes because of the fighting scene from other predators. You will also notice some black pepper like sprinkles on their skin. This is an infection called black spot disease. Adult altum can grow up to 13 to 15 inches or more. You must provide a large and spacious tank or aquarium for them.

When it comes to altum angelfish diet, this specie is not picky eater. They most especially like to feed on mosquito larvae, blood worms, Daphnia and some live brine shrimp. They prefer these foods to be frozen first. Make sure to feed them once a day then leave one day out before you feed them again to make sure that they really digested it all. Brine shrimp can also help their digestions and can even prevent constipation. Altums also like to eat the substarte on their tanks which can injure their delicate mouths Though most cichlids are peaceful, altum can be quite aggressive and territorial when it comes to space on their tanks. Make sure to use coarse gravel with more rounded edges to prevent this harm to happen to your altums.

By William Ousley  is a angelfish expert.
Article Source: EzineArticles