Cichlids Buying Guide

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Cichlids Buying Guide

In order for your cichlids to thrive, it is important to prepare the aquarium properly and purchase fish that can live side by side. Cichlids do better when only one or two pairs are in the same aquarium. As some are very aggressive, knowing which fish will thrive in the same tank is important. 


African River Cichlids

African river cichlids are all relatively friendly and have different personalities that tend to reduce stress between different pairs. Preferring a well-planted and maintained aquarium, these cichlids usually leave the plants alone and do not have a reputation for destructiveness of the tank environment. For hiding and breeding, African river cichlids need caves and protected spaces. Kribensis spawn in caves, which you can create using rocks, roots, or flowerpots. The African Thomasi spawns on flat surfaces like rocks, so you need a few flattops in the aquascape. To promote spawning in Egyptian mouthbrooders, the aquarium needs fine sand. With all of these fish, keep some areas of the tank free of plants and decorations to give the fish room to swim, as well as for you to see them. Keep the aquarium clean and African cichlids feed, thrive, and spawn. If the aquarium appears too sparse add a few schooling fish. 


Central American Cichlids

Cichlids from Central America are an aggressive tropical fish and do best with only two species in the tank. These fish spawn on rocks, so caves are not a necessity but still recommended for hiding places, resting areas, and refuge if one becomes more aggressive, especially during spawning and while caring for their young. Sajica usually leave plants alone, but Convict cichlids have a reputation for destruction of plants and surrounding environments. Since these fish do not need plants, consider sword plants, java fern, and anubias to decorate the aquascape. These fish are easy breeders; it is best to allow the parents to care for the young rather than separating them.


Amazon River Cichlids

When raising and breeding Amazon cichlids, you should consider having a larger aquarium of at least 200 litres as these fish are larger at maturity. Scalares need takes that are at least 50 cm in height. Easy to care for on a day to day basis, Amazonian fish require a bit more from the aquarist in order to spawn. A well-planted aquarium that allows plenty of free swimming area is super for these cichlids. Plant larger sword plants and cryptocoryne plants as these fish need good spawning plants. Curviceps like caves. You can add free swimmers like schooling fish to fill out the space, but avoid neon tetras with scalares as they see them as extra nourishment. Keep the water clean and filtered, and these fish thrive.

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