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Hi everyone who reads this..I'm new to the site,and new to keeping malawis,, would like to ask a few questions...
I just bought a used 320 litre tank that had malwai's in it..it came with eheim filter lights heater etc...I have cleaned the tank got some nice rocks...still to decide on what substate to go for yet...when I get it all set up and cycled.which of the malawis would be ideal for a beginner..I've read about African MalawI, American Malawi ,lake Malawi..what's the difference in them all..I like the bright coloured ones and the blue and black ones... Thanks in advance
 

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Welcome to CF and welcome to the cichlid hobby. When people in the fish hobby talk about 'Malawis', they most likely mean cichlids that originally live in Lake Malawi. Lake Malawi is a huge lake in Africa that is home to a very large number of cichlid species. Nearly all of those cichlids are endemic to Lake Malawi, meaning they exist only in that lake and nowhere else.

If you click on 'Profiles' on the top of this page, you can browse a list of cichlid species from Lake Malawi, which we have separated into three groups. Most people start with mbuna - which is what you probably mean by 'the bright coloured ones and the blue and black ones' :D

There are other places in Africa where cichlids for the aquarium hobby come from, most notably Lake Tanganyika. In addition to those 'Old World Cichlids', many cichlids come from South America and Central America (New World). In other words, there are definitely American cichlids, but there is no such thing as 'American Malawi'.

I hope you'll enjoy the site, and please don't hesitate to browse our library section or ask more questions in the forums.
 
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