Originally belonging to the genus Cynotilapia, Metriaclima sp. “mbweca” was commonly found on price lists as “afra mbweca” or “green afra”. Like other Malawi mbuna, male M. sp. “mbweca” can be territorial and does best in groups of one male and multiple females. While dominant males can be aggressive toward conspecific males, they are not known for being as aggressive as other mbuna. M. sp. “mbweca” can be kept with a variety of other cichlid species. However, care should be taken to ensure that females of other species are not similar to M. sp. “mbweca” females. A short article on Metriaclima sp. “mbweca” by Nick Andreola can be found in the Library.
A great hour-long dive video in the waters off of Chizumulu Island in Lake Malawi.
For Malawi cichlid fans, the name Chizumulu should ring a bell. There are many species in the hobby today that were originally collected from around Chizumulu Island including mbuna, peacocks and haps. While many species of cichlids can be seen in this video, the vast majority are mbuna. If you are a fan of in the wild videos or mbuna, this video by Marc Boulton of African Cichlid Hub is fantastic. To discuss the many species around Chizumulu Island in Lake Malawi, visit the Lake Malawi Species forum.
Labidochromis flavigulis. Chizumulu Island. Photo by Ad Konings
This article about cichlid test subjects up for adoption is about 10 days old, but there still might be some left. The Central American predatory cichlids were used to see how their presence would affect the development of platyfish. Once the study was over, about 70 cichlids were up for adoption at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. When the article was published on October 23rd, about half were still available. If you live in the area and are looking for some cichlids, you can inquire if some are still available by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the study which used cichlids test subjects visit The Daily Nebraskan website.
Julidochromis dickfeldi “midnight blue”. Photo by Dave Hansen
What appears to be a random mutation led to a uniquely colored Julidochromis dickfeldi. Known in the hobby by a variety of names, but most commonly as “midnight blue”, this strain of J. dickfeldi appeared at least 10 years ago. It is said that the first generation of the fish came from a spawn of normal J. dickfeldi. All subsequent offspring from “midnight blue” pairs yielded the same mutation.
Just added to the library is a short species profile of my own experiences with Julidochromis dickfeldi “midnight blue”. If you’ve ever kept J. dickfeldi or Julidochromis in general, the “midnight blue” strain isn’t any different. A breeding pair forms and together both parents raise repeated generations of offspring. Bonds between Julidochromis are usually lifelong. Check out the species article titled Julidochromis dickfeldi “midnight blue” in the library. Discussion can be done in the Lake Tanganyika forum.
Prognathochromis sp. “silver stiletto”. Photo by Dave Hansen
Prognathochromis sp. “silver stiletto” is a predator from Lake Nawampassa in the Lake Victoria Basin. Using its slender body, the “silver stiletto” will lie in wait among the reeds and quickly ambush unsuspecting fish. In the aquarium, P. sp. “silver stiletto” is undemanding although providing some plant cover will bring out its natural behavior. Like many other predators, this species is relatively docile when not hunting. Care should be taken with tankmates as it can easily be bullied by aggressive fish. Other fish in the tank should also be large enough not to become meals. Foods high in protein are a must for this piscivore.
Hobbyists who want a different look for their aquariums will do well to consider Prognathochromis sp. “silver stiletto”. However, care should be taken to provide them with a proper environment and diet. This fish well not do will with active herbivores like mbuna. To learn more about this predator, read the article titled Prognathochromis (Tridontochromis) sp. “silver stiletto” by Greg Steeves. Discussion can be done in the Lake Victoria Basin forum.
The Ohio Cichlid Association will be holding its 21st Extravaganza in less than a month. The OCA’s Extravaganza is one of the great cichlid events of the year and a must attend for anyone in the Cleveland area. This year’s speakers will include Ad Konings, Ted Judy, Julian Dignall and Heiko Bleher. Aside from the speakers, the Extravaganza will include a swap meet, informal dinner and auction of donated equipment from manufacturers. Of course, no cichlid event will be complete without a huge fish auction on Sunday.
Congochromis sabinae and fry. Photo by Udo Vornhusen. CC BY-SA 3.0
Congochromis sabinae is a small cichlid found in the Congo River system. Originally known as Nanochromis sabinae, this fish was first described by Anton Lamboj and named after his daughter, Sabina. Detailed information on their origin and natural habitat can be found in the Species Article by Randall Kohn.
In the aquarium, Congochromis sabinae should be kept in an aquarium with a sandy substrate and plenty of cover and caves. These fish form monogamous pairs and if conditions are right, they will spawn frequently. Tankmates should be peaceful. Water conditions need to be right, low pH and hardness, if you want lots of offspring. In the wild, C. sabinae feeds mostly on plant matter with the occasional invertebrate so a diet high in spirulina is recommended. Discussion on this species can be done in the Lake Victoria Basin, West African, Madagascar & Asian Species forum.
A third release of Pseudotropheus saulosi into the waters around Taiwanee Reef in Lake Malawi. This release was made by Larry Johnson and fellow divers last month.
At one time the waters of Taiwanee Reef were swarming with colorful Pseudotropheus saulosi. However, due to over-fishing, the species could hardly be seen. Fortunately P. saulosi are common in the hobby and young individuals are being returned to the area in hopes of reestablishing their numbers. This species was highly desirable due to their size and vivid colors. Dominant males a blue with black bars while females are bright yellow. This species came make a colorful addition to the appropriate aquarium setup. To learn more, read the Species Article by Paul Barber or visit the Lake Malawi forum.
Crenicichla tuca (top) and Crenicichla tapii (botton). Photo from publication.
A recent published paper has described two new Crenicichla species from the Iguazu River in South America. Crenicichla are commonly known as pike cichlids and depending on the species, can range in size from a few inches to almost two feet.
The two new Crenicichla species have been named Crenicichla tuca and Crenicichla tapii. As seen in the pictures above, C. tuca has an unusual mouth which sets it apart from other Crenicichla. While C. tuca appear to be solitary, C. tapii was usually observed in schools with other tapii. The article also revisits three other species of Crenicichla found in the same waters; C. iguassuensis, C. tesay and C. yaha.
The article, originally published in the Argentinian magazine Historia Natural, can be downloaded in PDF format from HERE. Two discuss the two new Crenicichla species or the three other species discussed in the article, visit the South American Cichlid forum.