Champsochromis spilorhynchus from Lake Malawi

Champsochromis spilorhynchus

Champsochromis spilorhynchus. Photo by Ad Konings

Champsochromis spilorhynchus is a pursuit predator found throughout Lake Malawi. Reaching over a foot in length, C. spilorhynchus will chase down anything it can fit into its mouth. Its prey consists mostly of haplochromines and mbuna. Males are slightly larger than females and have blue coloration with red on the anal fin. The only other member of the Champsochromis genus is C. caeruleus, also a large and sleek pursuit predator.

In the aquarium Champsochromis spilorhynchus needs lots of space. A six foot tank is a minimum size for a mature adult. Decorations or rocks are unnecessary since this species prefers open waters, but sand is recommended as a substrate. Although not generally aggressive, tankmates should not be anything smaller than half of C. spilorhynchus‘ size. Mbuna and small haps will be eaten. Other large, non-aggressive predators are best. Since C. spilorhynchus is generally a loner, groups larger than one male and two females are not recommended. To discuss this species visit the Lake Malawi Species forum.


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