In the aquarium these fish are quite easy to care for, and make for model citizens. They are amongst the least aggressive of peacocks and can be kept in smaller aquaria than other representatives of their genus. The aquarium must be at least 36” (90cm) in length, and some rocks or caves should be provided so that the fish will have somewhere to hide when feeling threatened. Finding food in the lake sediments is their natural feeding behaviour so a sand bottom is preferred, but gravel will work as well. Any high quality prepared dry food supplemented with frozen or live mysis shrimp, brine shrimp, and/or daphnia will meet all of their nutritional requirements. Many people who purchase either one of these species have difficulty with the males achieving the intense colouration as seen in pictures. A. maylandi and A. kandeensis are quite timid among cichlids, they simply don’t do well with most other species. Because of this their colouration can be very drab or washed out. Keeping them in a species tank is best, but it is possible for them to coexist with non-threatening cichlids like Labidochromis caeruleus. It is interesting to note that it is not uncommon to have two or even three males in a colony displaying full adult colouration. Aggression is kept to a minimum, and usually consists of a lot of displaying, but very little physical confrontation. Females will hold for approximately 21 days, but produce an exceedingly large number of fry for a peacock, expect 60-100 very small fry. Raising the minute fry does not pose any problem as they will readily eat baby brine shrimp, cyclopeeze, or finely crushed flake food.
Aulonocara kandeensis and Aulonocara maylandi are real “sleepers” amongst the peacocks of Lake Malawi. Their subtle beauty stacks up against their more extroverted cousins of the Stuartgranti complex at any given time. Once a hobbyist maintains these species they will undoubtedly agree with this sentiment.