'he' is a 'she', IMO. and it's difficult to determine, if it qualifies for any specific variant name, but it certainly is not content. note the exposed dorsal spines, the shredded pectoral, and the stubby pelvic fin with stunted trailers. the dark coloration is likely due to it's living situation. HTH.
I have a dark little guy as well. He is burundi. When i got him he was jet black . Since moving him to a tank with other fronts he now has black and white stripes but he is still darker than all the others. Instead of a blue dorsal he has a blue/black dorsal and his blue on anal fin is navy instead of sky blue. I noticed this fish has very dark blue color on the body. My little guy does not have dark blue on the body, just the fins. That is all that is keeping me from saying burundi as well. I would say she or he is stressed and is dark because its not relaxed. What fish are chasing it or is it a new fish ?
No fish are chasing him/her at all, in fact, he/she is the king of the tank and eats like a pig (Futian Freeze dried shrimp, O.S.I. Cichlid pellets and Xtreme Ciclid Diet pellets). None of the other fish even look at the Frontosa, the Front is kept with haps and peacocks that are about 1/3 of its size and a 4 inch Calvus in a 125 gallon tank with perfect water conditions (0 ammonia, 0 Nitrite, about 20 ppm Nitrate, 77 degrees and a ph of about 8.1/8.2).
I have had the Frontosa now for about 10-12 days, not sure if thats still considered new, and I bought it from probably the best cichlid shop in the Denver area where it was also very dark when I bought it. I had just done a water change in the tank before the picture was taken. I would think the slight cuts on the dorsal fin were maybe from her/him hitting the rock during the water change.
Fronts are usually kept in larger groups with other fronts, species only or species and algae eater. He might be still stressed from being in the shop and a new arrival at your house. I also noticed that fronts like a lower light than most (must be genetic cause they come from so deep in the lake)Try leaving the lights off for a few days , just room lights and natural light, see if he calms a bit. Do you have alot of rock work or fake plants for him to have a bit of cover ? Some people even go to homedepot and get pvc plumbing pipes or clay flowerpots for them to go into. That might help him to relax, if he has a area he feels safe in. It is possiable he is just dark, some are just darker than normal .
I think its a tanzanian variant, possiable mpimbwe. It could also be a zambian. Im leaning towards the tanz. variant though. I just recently started keeping mpimbwe my self so lets confirm with some other members. I say tanz because the mask is narrow looking (zaires tend to have a bigger, taller mask. ) and tanz are more commonly kept than zambian if im not mistaken. So even though zambian also have a narrow mask im going to go with tanz since the blue seems a bit lighter as well. What does everyone else think, do you all agree ?
I am new to IDing the non burundi types and like i said only recently started keeping my tanz. variant (mpimbwe) so i would go with what people who have kept those variants for a long time think it is. It is a beautiful a fish and is a gibberosa not a frontosa type for sure LOL. Im glad i was partially right on the tanz variant, could still be a mpimbwe though, I have seen many pics of mpimbwe with the dark extention of the mask on the cheek like yours. To be honest the differences in the individual variants of any particular group are very difficult to tell apart with the naked eye, even to experts. What did they tell you it was when you bought it ?
They didn't say. The fish was just listed as a Frontosa. It seems as though many places either don't care or have no idea that there are different types of Frontosa's. Heck, I just really started learning more about the fish from this web site.