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Cichlids / Africa / Lake Tanganyika / Black-finned Slender Cichlid

Black-finned Slender Cichlid
Cyprichromis leptosoma

Synonyms: Limnochromis leptosoma, Paratilapia leptosoma
Physical description: An slender, elongated fish. The head is muddy-yellow to bright yellow. This yellow color quickly becomes a deep violet blue to indigo blue. The anal and dorsal fins can be deep violet blue, while the pelvic fins is usually white with the lower part being bright yellow. The caudal fin is yellow or indigo blue depending on the morph.
Size/Length: To 5.5" (14 cm)
Similar species: Other Cyprichromis species.
Habitat: Eastern Africa, an open water swimmer usually found above a rocky biotope in the southern part of Lake Malawi
S: middle, top
Aquarium: 40" (101 cm) or 45-55 gallons (170-209 L) is sufficient for a small number of 4" (10 cm) fish. The fish of the genus Cyprichromis like a great deal of open swimming area, so a tank of at least 56" (142 cm) or 75-100 gallons (285-378 L). Cover the tank as this fish will jump, especially during courtship.
Water chemistry: pH 7.5-9.0 (8.0), 10-20 dH (15), 75-81°F (24-27°C).
Social behavior: An active schooling fish that swims in the upper strata. Peaceful, this fish can be kept with many other Tanganyika cichlids. A large school of six to ten fish is a fine set-up. In a school, there should be more females than males.
Suggested companions: Lake Tanganyika cichlids, Synodontis, Aulonocara, Lamprichthys, Afromastacembelus
FOOD: Live; flying insects, insect larvae, aquatic insects, crustaceans; flakes; pellets. Be sure to give this fish a balanced diet including nutritious live foods.
Sexual differences: Males are considerably more colorful.
Breeding techniques: Courtship takes place just below the surface. The fish are open water spawners. As each egg is dropped, the female gives chase and takes it into her mouth. The eggs are incubated for a period of three weeks. Their progress can often be observed through the female's transparent throat sac. The young leave the mother's mouth and head to the surface where they can be fed on Artemia, Cyclops nauplii, Daphnia, and crushed flake foods. The mother does not participate in broods care after the young are released.
Breeding potential: 7. Breeding is fairly difficult.
Remarks: A lack of nutritious foods and variety in their diet can lead to disease and blindness. Make frequent partial water changes.
Difficulty of care: 5. A peaceful fish that is sensitive to water pollutants.


By Rhett Butler   Mongabay.com