Ad Konings ACA 2016 Speaker
Between now and July 7th we’ll be doing a short profile on this year’s American Cichlid Association 2016 Convention speakers. Starting off with a person synonymous with cichlid keeping, Ad Konings. Born in the Netherlands, Ad’s passion for cichlids began at the age of 14. Although he originally studied medical biology at the University of Amsterdam, Ad is now one of the most recognizable names in ichthyology. In 1991 Ad started his publishing company, Cichlid Press and published his first of many cichlid books, Cichlids Yearbook, vol. 1.
In 1996 Ad Konings moved to El Paso, Texas. He has published many of the best books on cichlids and continues his research on the subject. Ad is also very involved with the Stuart M. Grant Cichlid Conservation Fund. Ad’s lectures are always exciting, informative and insightful. Join him and other speakers at this years ACA 2016 Convention.
Tropheus moorii Chaitika from Lake Tanganyika
Tropheus moorii Chaitika, aka Blue Rainbow. Photo by Ad Konings
The Tropheus genus from Lake Tanganyika is made up of only a handful of different species. However, those species are further defined by dozens of different variants. Pictured above is the Tropheus moorii Chaitika, commonly known as the Blue Rainbow. There are several variants commonly referred to as Red Rainbow, but only one Blue Rainbow.
Tropheus have a reputation of being best kept by advanced hobbyists, but with an understanding of their requirements and a willingness to meet thos needs, anyone can keep Tropheus. If you are interested in keeping a species like Tropheus moorii Chaitika check out the Tropheus Corner where you will find a variety of articles. To discuss any Tropheus species visit the Lake Tanganyika Species forum.
Amazon River needs to be connected
Photo by Neil Palmer/CIAT. CC 2.0
In past blogs the issues of dams being build on the Amazon River have been discussed. On one side there is the threat to the local ecology and on the other the increase need for sustainable energy. A recent study published in the journal Biological Conservation finds that separate areas along the river need to periodically flood and mix. This mixing of distinct regions leads to healthy and genetically diverse species of fish. Dams will prevent seasonal flooding which can have long-term effects not only on the native wildlife, but also on commercial fisheries.
For more information on the possible dangers dams pose to the Amazon River, read the study on the ReaserchGate.net website. To discuss cichlid species from the region visit the South American Species forum.
Malawi Cichlids in their Natural Habitat 5th Ed
The fifth edition of Malawi Cichlids in their Natural Habitat is now available. Through every edition, Ad Konings’ books have been a great resource for both beginner and advanced hobbyists. A review of the 4th edition by Peter Hofman can be found in the library.
The latest edition of Malawi Cichlids in their Natural Habitat includes over 1750 pictures mostly taken in the wild. Descriptions of species’ habitat, distribution, feeding and breeding behavior are included. For the novice hobbyists, this book is a great resource for helping identify and discover the many species of cichlids in Lake Malawi. Advanced hobbyists can also benefit by gaining a deeper understanding of the nature of fish they’ve kept. To discuss Lake Malawi cichlids visit the Lake Malawi Species forum. To pick up a copy of Malawi Cichlids in their Natural Habitat head over to Ad Konings’ website www.cichlidpress.com. The book is also found at a variety of online retailers and maybe your local stores.
Happy Mother’s Day 2016
Steatocranus bleheri and fry. Photo by Dave Hansen
The staff at Cichlid-Forum.com would like to wish all the special moms out there a happy Mother’s Day.
Pictured above is a Steatocranus bleheri with some of her fry. S. bleheri are found in the fast moving waters of the Luapula River System which eventually feeds into the Congo River. Although not very common in the hobby, Steatocranus keepers love their personalities and unusual behaviors. To find out more about S. bleheri check out the article title A Rheophilic Suprise, Steatocranus bleheri by Dave Hansen. To discuss this and other rheophilic species visit the West African species forum. Again, happy Mother’s Day!
American Cichlid Association Convention 2016
The American Cichlid Association Convention 2016 registration is now open. This year’s event will be in Cincinnati, Ohio and hosted by Greater Cincinnati Aquarium Society. The event is still two months away but everyone should start making plans to be in Cincinnati on July 7th – 10th. Scheduled lecturers include Ad Konings, Greg Steeves, Rusty Wessel, Jeff Cardwell, Vin Kutty, Steve Lundblad, and Wayne Leibel.
Activities during the convention will include tours to the Newport Aquarium, several Cincinnati Craft Breweries, and the Cincinnati Zoo. What better way to do it than with other cichlid enthusiasts. For more information on the year’s American Cichlid Association Convention visit their website at acaconvention2016.com. More updates will be posted as the event date draws closer.
Invasive crayfish threaten Lake Tanganyika
Australian red-claw crawfish. Photo by Department of Fisheries & Allied Aquacultures, Auburn University.
There is a new threat to Lake Tanganyika. Invasive crayfish have been making their way toward the lake. When crayfish get into bodies of water for the first time, their impact on the local ecology is devastating. They are voracious eaters that will consume algae, plants, invertebrates and fish.
Past experiences with the introduction of crayfish into African waters have all ended badly. Even the Okavango Delta, one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa, is at risk from the invading crayfish. To read more about the invasive crayfish and their past and potential impacts check out the article on The Huffington Post.
Metriaclima fainzilberi OB “Charo”
Metriaclima fainzilberi OB “Charo”. Photo by Ad Konings
Metriaclima fainzilberi is a Lake Malawi mbuna collected from various locations. Pictured above is an orange-blotched male from Charo on the western side of the lake. While most M. fainzilberi males are blue with black stripes, OB coloration does rarely happen.
Metriaclima fainzilberi is a herbivore and should be fed a diet high in plant matter. Although not especially aggressive toward other species, males can be very aggressive toward other M. fainzilberi. Care should be taken to ensure females and subdominant males have room to run and hide. Tankmates should be chosen to be tolerant of aggression as well as having a compatible diet. To discuss M. fainzilberi visit the Lake Malawi Species forum.
Neolamprologus cylindricus from Lake Tanganyika
Neolamprologus cylindricus. Photo by Ad Konings
Neolamprologus cylindricus is a rock-dwelling predator found in Lake Tanganyika feeding mostly on small fish and crustaceans. N. cylindricus gets its name from the streamlined, cylinder shape of its body. Its shape resembles that of a closely related species, Neolamprologus leleupi.
In the aquarium Neolamprologus cylindricus can be problematic if its aggressiveness isn’t managed. N. cylindricus is a solitary fish and does not tolerate other N. cylindricus unless it is its breeding partner. Extra males and even females will be harassed to death by the dominant male. When a pair is spawning, other species of fish will be introduced to N. cylindricus sharp teeth. Despite its aggression, N. cylindricus can be successfully kept with other species. In community tanks, separate rock territories need to be provided so a pair of N. cylindricus can defend it while allowing other species the rest of the tank. Suitable species need to be tough and with the same dietary requirements. Similarly shaped Neolamprologus should be avoided. For more information on Neolamprologus cylindricus visit the Lake Tanganyika Species forum or read up on the short article by Marc Elieson in the library.
Amatitlania sp. “Honduran Red Point”
Amatitlania sp. “Honduran Red Point”. Photo by Dave Hansen
Amatitlania sp. “Honduran Red Point” fist appeared in the hobby almost 15 years ago where it went by a variety of names. There has always been speculation that this fish is a variant of Amatitlania nigrofasciata (convict cichlid). However, many hobbyist believe that it is a different species. Despite its attractive coloration, ease of breeding and temperament, this species has not gained much traction in the hobby.
In an aquarium, Amatitlania sp. “Honduran Red Point” males reach about 4 inches while females are about an inch shorter. They readily accept all types of food and are believed to be omnivores. They can be shy and do best when provided caves. Once comfortable, A. sp. “Honduran Red Point” will pair up and stake out some territory. Eggs are laid on a hard surface and spawns yield about 50 fish. The adults will look after the fry until they are old enough to be on their own. To discuss A. sp. “Honduran Red Point” visit the Central American Cichlids forum.