Central American Cichlids • Convict Cichlid

Discussion regarding only Central American Cichlid species. (Guapotes, Jack Dempseys, Red Devils, Firemouths, Convicts, Texas Cichlids, etc.)

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Convict Cichlid

Postby BC in SK » Thu Oct 10, 2019 12:06 am

A thread for any thing and everything to do with the Convict Cichlid.
Pictures and video. Links to information and articles. Discussion on tanks, tank size, tank mates, set ups, spawning and other behavior, aggression, size, growth ect. ect.
Still my favorite cichlid after all these years. Larger males are sort of like a miniature Midas cichlid, but with a little less attitude.
A picture of one of my current males:
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A picture of my current 'pink' male with one of the 'pink' females in front:
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Some video from 125 gal. Convict Cichlid tank:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xphIlCk4TmY
And picture from back in 2011, of male and female convict cichlid:
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BC in SK
 
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:06 pm
Location: canada

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Re: Convict Cichlid

Postby BC in SK » Sun Oct 20, 2019 4:21 pm

Male convicts get considerably larger then the females. Males can get up to 6" or more and weigh over 100 grams.
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While males can be more impressive due to their larger size, deeper bodies, nuchal humps and nicer finnage, females are almost always the more colorful. 3 1/2" to 4 1/2" is a fairly typical size for mature females. Largest I've ever had was 4 3/4" and weighed 44 grams. There are pictures on the internet showing a 5" female beside a tape measure, but that sort of size is really not common at all, for female convicts.
Picture of a mature female convict. Less yellow on it's belly then most female convicts, but still more colorful then most males, with some yellow on it's fins:
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Often, a large difference in size between male and female tends to be an indicator that an animal is polygamous. IME, convicts have a tendency towards polygamy with males often pairing up with 2 or more females at the same time and occasionally breeding with more then one female at the same time. Though of coarse a male has to be very dominant and own large territory in order to breed with more then one female at the same time.
Some video of my convicts in the 125 gal. taken last month:
BC in SK
 
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:06 pm
Location: canada

Re: Convict Cichlid

Postby BC in SK » Mon Nov 11, 2019 10:45 am

As far as tankmates, convicts are very versatile. At some point in time, I would have kept convicts with just about every fish I have ever kept. The few exceptions would have been apistos andNanaochromis nudiceps ( but even then I may have kept them very briefly with very young convicts as it's too long ago to remember very well). Convicts are aggressive, so what might be suitable in a grow up situation while young and small, doesn't always work out well as larger adults. Their tankmates usually need to be very tough and sturdy to live with adult convicts. And convicts are usually pretty confident and out going so they do not generally require other fish for a dither role, and may in fact be used as dithers for some other cichlids.
Over the last 2 decades I have kept convicts quite a bit with both Salvini and Blackbelt. They have definitely worked out a lot better with Blackbelt, then salvini, though still with a lot of friction. Even had male Blackbelt just a little larger(7 1/2") kill my large male convict (6"). With salvini, I'll keep them together to some extant in grow up situations, or female convict in a salvini tank or female salvini in a convict tank up to a certain size or stage, but full grown pairs of both in the same tank has proven to be a no-no time and time again over the last 18 years. IME, salvinis will fight the convicts...until the convicts loose! Sometimes convicts work out OK with larger CA. The convicts can use there smaller size and/or the terrain as an agility advantage and because they are of a different weight class the larger cichlid doesn't really push the dispute and tolerates them. But I've had other CA that had to be separated from convicts. I had a dovii X festae hybrid that when he was around the 8" size had a large pair of convicts held hostage in their cave. Even the female convict couldn't come out of it's cave for a moment with out getting nailed at high speed. So they had to be separated right away!
Over the years, I've found they get along much better with African mouthbrooders then they do with other substrate spawners. That's my experience, anyways. I currently keep them with demasoni and zebra obliquidens. Demasoni have the added advantage of being in some what different weight class, so are often a little less competitive then they would be with other mbuna. Also have a male convict in my 90 gal. with male Malawi and a young male salvini. Male convict is boss of the tank though the male sunshine peacock owns territory in the upper levels of the tank:
BC in SK
 
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:06 pm
Location: canada


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