Friday, October 14, 2011

Choosing African Cichlids

You may be like me and like the tropical fish species called Mbuna cichlids. If this is the species that you have chosen to put into your tank then, good for you! I will like to suggest that when choosing African cichlids that you purchase all the cichlids you want at one time. It is not a good idea to buy a few now and then a few more later because the original cichlids in the tank will have probably already established boundaries and adding in new cichlids could cause some major fighting. By adding them all at the same time eliminates one particular species from gaining total control and terrorizing the rest in the tank. This approach can level the playing field, so to speak. But if you already have a few Malawian cichlids in your tank and you want to add some more then read the post I wrote called "Cichlid Aggression Prevention". And of course that post can help you if some fighting does start in your tank some time in the future (hopefully this doesn't happen, but it can, so watch your cichlids on a regular basis).

After your tank has cycled, you will then want to purchase healthy fish. What are some things to look for to make sure your fish are healthy? Look for fish that are active within the tank. If they are staying at the bottom or hanging out at the top without much movement, it's a good possibility that the fish is sick or stressed. Pick the fish that are freely swimming around with others. If the abdomen of the fish appears to be fat
or if you see red streaks on its body and it is breathing quickly it may be suffering from Malawian Bloat. You will want to avoid that fish. If you see white spots or what appears to be fuzz on the fish, this is another sign that the fish is sick. Don't purchase that one.

So to narrow it down, just closely view the fish in the fish store and avoid the ones that act or look weird. If the fish or fishes you want are active, bright eyed, and are good colorful fish, then they will probably be fine to purchase. Hopefully this advice helps you in Choosing African Cichlids as your tropical freshwater fish! Read more about African cichlids...