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Pseudotropheus polit
by Marc Elieson

Subadult male P. politThis particular mbuna species hails from Lion's Cove, also home of the ever-popular Labidochromis caeruleus "Electric Yellow". Males are a soft, bluish-white with a black face mask. Females look similar, although they have an orangish hue to them. They also seem to retain a dark horizontal stripe. This fish is best kept in ratios of at least 2 females to one male, if not 3:1. My male is quite "nippy" with the female, and I have heard similar reports from others keeping this fish.

P. polit is a vegetarian, scraping algae from the rocks and eating occasional invertebrates hidden in the biocover. They respond best if fed foods high in vegetable content, such as Spirulina flakes. Other veggies such as squash, spinach, and zucchinni are usually consumed with enthusiasm.

Subadult male and unsexed juvenile P. politMales reach lengths of approximately 4 inches, 4 inches max. Females tend to be a slightly shorter. Even though this mbuna is a "rock-dwelling cichlid," my experience tells me that they keep to the open water most of the time. Don't misunderstand, however, rock work is appreciated for females that are either stressed or holding. While I have not bred this particular species, others report that the male will frequently "bump" holding females, causing them either to swallow or release the fry prematurely. Consequently, removing holding females to another tank is recommended. Holding time is approximately four weeks, with broods numbering 12-18. □

VIDEO: Pseudotropheus polit. Courtesy of Marcelino Guel.  [File size = 0.8MB]


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