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Discussion regarding only Lake Victoria Basin, West African, Madagascar & Asian Species.
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Starry Night Cichlid

Wed Jul 22, 2009 7:30 pm

I'm looking into getting a starry night cichlid (Paratilapia polleni, I think). I know there's a profile on here, but it's not very detailed at all, and I cant find very much good information elsewhere either. Does anyone know anything specifically about them that you could share? I'm wanting to get him his own tank... what would be the best size? And would he be okay by himself or would he prefer some tank mates? And if so, what is compatible with him? Thanks!

Fri Jul 24, 2009 11:16 am

I have a young male Polleni in a 125 gal tank with a Nicaraguanese, a Robertsoni, a Gold Sev, a Green Sev, a Chocolate Pleco, & an African Brown Knife. He is at about 6" and starting to get his nuchal hump. He is the lead dog in the tank, but not much more than a split fin has happened in the tank. I have had him since he was about 1 1/2" as were all of his tankmates. He seems really to get along with everyone in the tank and is like a puppy. I think he would be lonely if he didn't have the others in the tank. Just from his personality. If you decide to get one, do not get a tank any smaller than 18" wide. The males can get to over a foot long and it would make it very difficult for them to turn around. They are a beefy fish, very thick. I love mine!

Fri Jul 24, 2009 2:57 pm

Thank you so much! I was thinking about setting him up a 55 but I guess I'll have to go with at least a 75. So any of the lesser aggressive south american cichlids would be relatively compatible with him?

Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:51 pm

Yeah any of the sa or ca cichlids short of a Jack Dempsey will be fine.

Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:58 pm

I always thought a a single one with a group of jewel cichlids in a tank with anubias would look stellar.

Thu Dec 10, 2009 10:57 am

I always thought a a single one with a group of jewel cichlids in a tank with anubias would look stellar.

I think it would look great as well. Do you think this would work? I have never kept jewels, have only read about them.

Thu Dec 10, 2009 5:13 pm

Well, I haven't kept a polleni before so I'm not sure. Jewels can be fiesty things though, often called the 'convict of westies' ... I've kept jewels with breeding convicts before and they can give as good as they get. I would try it myself, though I have heard that pollenis can be bullies with smaller fish ... which is why I would choose the jewels. Fiesty buggers.

Thu Dec 10, 2009 10:53 pm

Interesting thought as I am currently looking into tankmates for a young polleni and have always admired jewels.

Re: Starry Night Cichlid

Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:14 pm

I had one in a mbuna tank. He was my favorite fish, but died suddenly after a substrate change 2 days ago. I did have to remove a Kenyi that used to bother him, but he thrived after that.
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