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Types of Peacock Cichlids and Care Requirements

Peacock Cichlids care requirements can be rated from medium to slightly difficult depending on the experience of the fish keepers. Generally as long as you provide the living environment close to the same condition just like in the wild where they are caught from, then it should be okay. However, these days, new generations of peacock cichlids have been captive bred and thus are easier to look after since they can tolerate and adapt to our household water quality far better than their ancestors from Lake Malawi.

Regardless, the species is still very much sensitive to sudden change in water quality. Normally, in between water changes, try not to alter the hardness level and pH too drastically or they will show signs and effect of lethargy and losing their appetite. A good general guide is to control the water hardness at about 8 to 10 dGH while the alkaline level should be around 7.2 to 8.0 unit. For better understanding on the hardness requirement, refer to the water hardness table which will indicate on the level that you are having. Your pet will produce a lot of waste if you constantly feed them and accumulation of these materials will also alter the pH. I would suggest getting a good aquarium filtration system in place and constantly monitor and do water changes periodically.

sunshine sunburst peacock cichlidsA sunburst and sunshine cichlids comparing side by side

There are different types of peacock cichlids being sold in the market although most of these that you will find are generally hybrids produced by cross-breeding. Nowadays it is very rare to find pure bred peacocks that still maintain the original strain and natural lines similar to those that your could still find in their wild habitat. Few of the most common types that you will normally come across are sunshine peacock cichlid, the sunburst variant and also the blue (electric blue) peacocks. Comparing among all of them, the most popular is usually the sunshine type because being the prettier ones with having vivid and striking colors; they usually attract the most attention of the aquarium hobbyist.

Studying the peacock’s normal behavior is very interesting and is an important step towards your decision to establish a single species community tank. Males can sometimes show aggression towards each other especially when the males outnumber the females and there exist a competition to find their partners during mating season. There are times that even with different gender of the fish in existence living in the same aquarium, one of them is bound to exert its dominance towards the other fish and thus getting at least 100-gallon aquarium to house 3 – 4 of these fish should be the minimum requirement. Normally the most sensible thing is to have a male together with the presence of two females in its company.

Identifying whether your peacock fish is a male or female should be rather straightforward as only the males have bright and attractive coloration. If your intention is to set up an aquarium with only the males present and you do want a dull looking fish, then the appropriate thing to do is to buy them in a group when all of them are young. Establish a tank with lots of live plants in it, complete with rocks, caves and driftwood if possible and the bottom layer should be filled with fine sands. There are even attempts to mix the peacock cichlids with mbuna in the same aquarium and the results somehow varies with some reporting that theirs are fine while others are less fortunate and ended up different species fighting each other.

These days the aquaculture industry is booming especially in Asia with demands for different types of cichlids commanding a very good price for a fine specimen. The peacocks fish definitely fit into this criteria as it serves not only just a hobby but also for those with interest to take it further and venture into this field.



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About Me

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My fascination and interest towards aquarium fish has led me to devote my time towards caring and learning about this wonderful pet.

Aquarium fish keeping is a very challenging and exciting hobby. When I first started, I never knew much or have the necessary guidance back then because none of my family members were actually a keen hobbyist. And because of that, I’ve encountered numerous failures and the worst part is having to deal with dead fish every time when you started to grow fond and getting attached to my pets. However, I persevered and took steps to find out and search for information from other hobbyist, apart from the knowledge gained and learned from my own experience and research. The blog that I’ve created here is meant to share useful information and tips about aquarium fish keeping so that new hobbyist will not make the same mistakes that I’ve made in the past."

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