A complete guide to keeping cichlids in your home aquarium
Some cichlids are haremic (e.g., some of the Apistogramma)where there may be several females within the male’s territory, but were each female lays her eggs in her own cave. Each female also provides care for her own young, whereas the male protects the harem and the entire territory from other males and predators.
Fish Information for African Cichlids - Lake Malawi, Lake Tanganyika, Lake Victoria, West African Cichlids, and Dwarf Cichlids including cichlid care, cichlid breeding, and fish diseases.
Tank mates should be chosen with a lot of care and should consist of other species from Lake Malawi. The , also from Africa (Rivers - Nile, Niger, Zaire) are thought to be able to be kept with zebra cichlds. These fish are extremely aggressive and if a peaceful view is desired when one glances at the tank, then these fish are definitely not the type to get. More males to females are advised. Males establish territories and defend them, while females tend to school. - Information about Aulonocara
- Information about Breeding Aulonocara
- A detailed article about breeding this Lake Malawi mouthbrooder, together with some useful general tips.
- Information about Haplochromis
- A guide to help you mad home made rocks for your Mbuna aquarium.
- Information about Keeping Pseudotropheus
- Information about Malawi Cichlids
- An article about Mbuna cichlids, their care and breeding.
- Information about Pseudotropheus
- Information about Pseudotropheus Breeding
- Basic information about Pseudotropheus cichlids from lake Malawi.
Best results in breeding is achieved by having 1 male for every 3 females. A displaying/shimmying male is usually trying to coax the females until they get them to breed. The female spawns on a flat rock or in a cave at the bottom of the tank and as many as 60 eggs can be laid. She then takes the unfertilized eggs in her mouth, following the male closely until he releases the sperm. The egg spots play an important role as it is thought that the female believes these are more eggs and goes to retrieve them and at this moment the male releases his sperm and fertilizes the eggs in her mouth. Unlike the South American cichlids after mating the male and female go their separate ways and the female cares for the eggs/fry herself. The eggs are rich with yolk and take a long time to hatch. Once hatched the yolk sac takes about 20 days to be absorbed. Being , the female carries the eggs in her mouth until the eggs hatch. Newly hatched fry can be fed daphina and dry foods.Water Changes
As I mentioned earlier, cichlid care begins with the aquarium. The aquarium being a closed environment, gets unclean quickly especially in case of overcrowding, excessive feeding, and ineffective filters. Hence you need to change the water regularly, and in small quantities. At least 10% of the aquarium water should be changed every week. Some species, such as the Malawi Cichlids which are prone to aggressiveness may become gentler with water changes of up to 30% every two weeks. Water changes if made more often during the breeding period, and during the time of raising the fry, is beneficial. If water changes are made regularly, then the level of substances that are potentially harmful will be reduced. Feeding
A variety of foods must be fed to your cichlids. Cichlid flakes and pellets, frozen, and even live food. Feed them smaller quantities frequently, rather than a large amount at one go. If you are unable to feed them often enough, you could provide them with rocks which have a lot of algal growth on them. Inappropriate kinds of food might make cause bloating, sickness, and may even be fatal. Cichlid care involves being aware of the specific needs of your cichlids, so do some research about them and their diets first.This article describes taking care of Malawi cichlids as a whole including breeding, dietary needs and tank set-up. Use a form at the bottom to share experiences regarding keeping Malawi cichlids or simply ask us in case your question isn't answered below yet.