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Species profiles presents in depth studies, articles, and information surrounding the numerous species of Lake Malawi Cichlids.
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Melanochromis auratus
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Group Mbuna
Location Click to find this species location
Male Picture
Female Picture
Juvi Picture
Discovered By BOULENGER, 1897
Common Name "Golden"
Fish Size min 3" - max 4" Inches
Min Tank Size 50 Gallons
Sexual Differences Males develop black over the yellow in the body, face and fins and the dark stripes become yellow to light blue. Females are yellow in body, face and fins with two black horizontal bands on the body. The dorsal fin also has a black horizontal band. Caudal fin has black spots on upper region with lower region remaining solid yellow.
General Information Located in the southern third of the lake. Found in the rocky habitat. Diet in the wild consists mostly of algae and invertebrates. M. auratus is an opportunistic feeder and will eat anything it can fit into its mouth.

The aquarium should have plenty of rockwork to provide shelter, territorial markers and spawning sites. Feed a quality cichlid flake/pellet food. Supplement with spirulina flake and frozen foods such as krill, brine or mysis.

M. auratus is considered a highly aggressive species and as such should be kept with other species from the mbuna group that share a similar temperament.

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