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Cichlids / Africa / Lake Malawi / Mbuna / Eduard's Mbuna

Eduard's Mbuna
Pseudotropheus socolofi

Synonyms: Pseudotropheus pindani
Physical description: P. socolofi has a "typical" mbuna shape. The coloring of the fish is golden yellow or pale blue to dark blue. On the blue morph, faint bands can sometimes be seen. Usually the blue variant is marked with a black ridge along the upper part of the dorsal fin and a black band on the first rays of the anal fin. The yellow morphs are usually not marked.
Size/Length: Males to 4.7" (11 cm), females to 4" (10 cm)
Similar species: Barlow's Mbuna ( P. barlowi), Zebra Mbuna ( P. zebra)
Habitat: Eastern Africa; found on the eastern coast of Lake Malawi and around the Likoma Islands.
S: All
Aquarium: 40" (100 cm) or 40 gallons (150 L). Use rock structures that reach the surface of the water. Provide hiding places among these structures. Robust, live plants can be used as this fish will not usually bother them. Leave open swimming areas.
Water chemistry: pH 7.5-9.0 (8.1), 12-25 dH (16), 73-81°F (23-27°C)
Social behavior: P. socolofi is among the most peaceful of Pseudotropheus species. Although territorial, this fish does well with peaceful mbunas and Peacocks.
Suggested companions: Small Haplochromines, mbunas, Synodontis, Aulonocara
FOOD: Algae; flake; live; snails, bloodworms, mosquito larvae, microorganisms, crustaceans, snails, Tubifex ; pellets; tablets; plant matter; vegetables; peas, lettuce, spinach; fruit.
Sexual differences: Males have three to four, distinct egg-spots on the anal fin and have slightly longer pelvic fins.
Breeding techniques: Use water with a temperature from 77-82°F (25-28°C), a pH from 8.0-8.3, and a hardness from 10-16 dH. The male is polygamous, so use several females. As many as 60 eggs are laid and fertilized by the dummy-egg method. The female mouth broods the eggs for 20-25 days. The blue colored fry emerge and can be fed Artemia , Cyclops , and Daphni a. The female should be removed 6-10 days after the fry are released from the female's mouth.
Breeding potential: 7. A moderately difficult fish to breed.
Remarks: P. socolofi differs from other mbunas by its lack of clear sexual dichromatism.
Difficulty of care: 4. A relatively peaceful mbuna.


By Rhett Butler   Mongabay.com