Cichlids are freshwater fish originating from Africa and South America. A hugely diverse species of fish, there are thousands of different types, ranging in size from only a few centimetres to over one metre. Cichlids are popular for their beautiful colourings, their behaviour, and their diverse shapes. Care needs to be taken when choosing cichlids for a home aquarium as not all species are peaceful with other fish. When choosing a cichlid, consider the popular species from African cichlids, South American cichlids, and Dwarf cichlids.
African cichlids are freshwater fish found in various lakes throughout Africa. Popular African cichlids ideal for home aquariums include the Malawi cichlids. Prized for their bright colouring, there are estimated to be around 800 different types of Malawi cichlids. Zebra cichlids and peacock cichlids are two of the top types of Lake Malawi cichlids available. Tanganyika cichlids are another top type of cichlid. These fish come from Lake Tanganyika, the second deepest lake in the world, and there are around 250 different cichlid species in this particular lake. Lake Tanganyika cichlids have a unique body shape. Tropheus cichlids are endemic to Lake Tanganyika and are generally larger sized fish and quite peaceful.
South American Cichlids
Cichlids are also native to South America. South American cichlids are attractive looking, hardy, and peaceful fish, making them a popular choice of cichlid for a home aquarium, especially a large home aquarium. Their behaviour is interesting and intriguing because they are quite an interactive type of fish. South American cichlids are diverse due to the wide range of ecological environments they are found in throughout Central and South America, meaning their different types range dramatically in size. Unique types include the Angelfish, the Discus cichlid, the Blood Parrot, and the Flowerhorn cichlid.
Dwarf cichlids are sometimes quite difficult to keep as they are not very hardy fish. They are found in both South America and Africa. Reaching a size of around 10 centimetres, dwarf cichlids make for an ideal addition to any home fish tank no matter its size. With more than 250 identified species of Dwarf cichlids, the Apistogramma is the most popular and readily available type. The Ram cichlid is another popular choice of dwarf cichlid, and the Kribensis cichlid is a beautiful looking cichlid that many like to have as part of their aquarium collection. Other types of dwarf cichlids include the Cockatoo cichlid, the Panda Dwarf cichlid, the Rainbow cichlid, and the Black-Stripe Dwarf cichlid.