Location: Taiwan Reef, north of Chizumulu Island.
Biotope: Sediment-free Rocky Habitat.
Size: 8cm in the wild, slightly larger in the aquaria.
Diet: They feed from the biocover and pick at the loose material from the substrate. They’re found in very high current so they constantly need to feed since they burn so much energy. In the aquaria feed foods high in vegetable matter. Feed them Spirulina, spinach, kelp, and a good supply of algae should be available to them also. They’re prone to bloat and will die if not fed properly.
Temperment: Territorial males are quite aggressive in their defence. Their aggression is concentrated on conspecific males, which they dislike very much. Females school in large schools along with non-territorial males in groups of 50 or more. Females in the aquaria will establish dominance amongst themselves and you’ll have an alpha female. Males are belligerent in the aquaria and will dislike anything with blue and black stripes.
Spawning Behaviour: Males lead females to the nest. The nest is usually a shallow depression in the substrate beside a rock out of the current. These fish love current even in the aquaria. A powerhead if used across a flat rock will become a favorite spots with the male at the front. Spawning will also occur more often using this method. Males will also develop a large chest region just ahead of the pelvic fins. This is built up from constant swimming in current.
Breeding: Females are great holders and show amazing colour. The fry are also very attractive both being very bright yellow/orange. Females, hold anywhere from 15 to 30 eggs for about 25 days. They’re a dwarf mbuna but make up for it with splendid colour and an attitude. Males are blue with black vertical bars, which contrast the bright yellow females. The fry grow not too quickly but not too slow. They don’t get very big to begin with so they don’t have to grow too much.
photo by Kevin Bauman
Konings, Ad. (1990). Ad Konings's Book of Cichlids and All The Other Fishes of Lake Malawi: NJ: T.F.H. Publications Inc.
Konings, Ad. (1997). Back to Nature Guide to: Malawi Cichlids: Germany: Fohrman Aquaristik AB