Pinstriped Fish That Packs A Punch – Convict Cichlid (Amatitlania nigrofasciata) – Complete Species Guide

Convict Cichlids! An instantly recognizable fish, and a widespread species for many years. A species that started in Central America. It now has spread all over the world, living in many people’s tanks and aquariums. Cared for and liked by fish enthusiasts all across the globe.

You may be wondering what all the fuss is about.
First, they’re an easy fish to look after and don’t need much maintenance and care. Second, they have a look that is aesthetically pleasing. In short, they’re popular for a reason. 🙂

Convict Cichlid black and white

If you’re thinking of having a Convict Cichlid, (or a few) as a pet. Or, you have one and are looking for more information, or you’re curious, you’ve come to the right place! We have everything on the Convict Cichlids right here, so read on.

Table Of Contents:

Convict cichlids breeding: Eggs hatching and taking care of the new born fry

Basic Facts

Name: Convict Cichlid

Scientific Name: Amatitlania nigrofasciata

Group: Freshwater

Size Of The Fish: Small/Medium

Temperament: Aggressive and Territorial

Aquarium Size Required: Medium

Where It Swims: All Areas

Care Difficulty Rating: Easy

Good Paired With: Convict Cichlids, Other Aggressive/Semi-Aggressive Cichlid Species


Convict Cichlids come from several countries in Central America. (Like many other species in the Cichlidae family.) These include Guatemala, Panama, Costa-Rica, Nicaragua, and Honduras.

The fish are freshwater, and they will usually be found in streams, creeks and similar bodies of water. They seem to prefer water bodies that have a steady stream of running water. They aren’t present in slow-moving water.

Convict Cichlids also seem to prefer habitats that provide hiding spots and protection. Usually, this protection is in the form of rocks and branches that have fallen into the water.

Determining the origin of the common name is quite simple. They have black stripes that go vertically across the body. These stripes have been compared to the uniform that prisoners in Britain used to wear. Before they were known as prisoners, they were called convicts. Hence the name.

The stripes have stemmed another comparison. That is one to the lines on a Zebra. So, they are sometimes known as Zebra Cichlids.

Convict Cichlid swimming taken by @catfishriver on Instagram - Here we share everything you need to know about Convict Cichlids. Find out how to keep your Convict Cichlids happy and healthy. | Contented Fish
Thanks to @catfishriver on Instagram for this Photo of this Convict Cichlid swimming.



Convict Cichlids have a distinctive appearance, that’s for sure. Their stripes and dark to light gray skin make them recognizable. Though they are not vibrantly colored. They are still quite an aesthetically pleasing fish.

An important factor in keeping fish is knowing the sex of your fish. It determines many factors, from how breeding will play out, to whether the Convict Cichlids will have a quiet existence.

As with many species, all across the animal kingdom, it can be difficult to determine the sex of the individual, but here are a few pointers to help you.

Markings and Colours: Males and females, although they share the same characteristic stripes. They are colored differently. A male has grey skin, and the black lines are paler than the females.

What’s unusual about these species of Cichlids is that the female has more colors, not the other way around. Strange, isn’t it. When the female is breeding, she usually has an orange spot on her body. Males don’t possess this feature. She also has very dark stripes and orange to pink coloration on her dorsal fin and belly.

Another method is to look closely at their dorsal and anal fins, though you will have to handle the fish to do this. If the individual fish has spots on them, they’re a male. Females don’t have any of these.

Small Convict Cichlid swimming among plants taken by @funtimefishkeeping
A great photo of a small Convict Cichlid by @funtimefishkeeping

Size and Shape: As usual, the males are larger than females. All their fins are more extended and pointer, and often they end in tendrils. Another dead giveaway is when a male matures; he develops a fatty lump on his head. So, his cranium looks much more significant than that of his female counterparts.

Behavior: Males are much more aggressive and territorial in the breeding season.

(Even if after you’ve followed all the pointers listed above, and you still can’t tell, ask your local vet or expert. That should clear up the problem.)

The usual coloration of the Convict Cichlid is blue-grey. This, along with the characteristic black stripes. The average number of these is 8-9. As with many fish, there are no differences between the sexes until the fish reach maturity.

Convict Cichlids aren’t as big as some other Cichlid Species. These can be a good pick if you are pushing for space. In the wild, they are much smaller than in the aquarium, the usual range being 1.5-3″ (4-7cm).

In the tank, they are bigger. Males usually grow to about the size of 6.5″ (17cm) long. Females are around 4.5″ long (11cm).

Their lifespan is 8-10 years, the average for a Cichlid. However, many sources say if they are well cared for, they may live for much longer than their usual lifespan.


These fish breed readily. But they are difficult to maintain during the breeding season. This is primarily due to the problems it causes with other inhabitants of the aquarium.

Most Cichlids become aggressive during the breeding season, (mostly the males.) However, Convict Cichlids take it to a whole other level. It can be quite a dangerous time for the fish.

A small convict cichlid swimming taken by @gillock1980
Another great photo by @gillock1980 – A small convict cichlid swimming.

We can’t stress how important is to monitor the fish. If you do, you can prevent any problems from happening. Remember, prevention is better than the cure.

If you are planning on breeding Convict Cichlids, it’s best that you aren’t a complete beginner. Here we explain the process they go through to reproduce, and how to prepare the conditions of the tank for them.

Before the breeding season, raise the water temperature to 84 °F. Make sure you have flat rocks through the tank. These will be used to lay the eggs. Also, have a separate breeding tank or a divider to separate the couple from the rest of the fish.

The process starts the same way it does for many fish. The behavior of the males change, and they begin to pair off. (You must be patent at this stage, the courtship takes a long time.) Once you have established that there is a pair, make sure to take them away from the others.

(Convicts have a different partner each breeding season, but only one at a time.)

When they have begun to breed, make sure to renew ¼ of tank water regularly.

The female will lay her eggs in a spot of her choosing, usually one with a flat surface. The male will fertilize the eggs. The average clutch size is around 100-200. Then, they split the responsibility. She looks after the eggs, and he guards her and their unhatched offspring fiercely.

(Again, this is why it’s important to separate them.)

Here we share everything you needed to know about Convict Cichlids. This Convict Cichlid is courtesy of fishy_wishes on Instagram.
Thanks to @fishy_wishes_ on Instagram for sharing this photo of a convict cichlid

Like other cichlid species, these fish are attentive parents. They cater to the fry’s every need. The eggs hatch in around three days. The hatchlings can’t swim for another 2-3 days until they are freed from the yolk. When this happens, they become free-swimming.

During this period, they are guarded by their parents, who will attack any fish that comes too close. After this time, (it’s quite rare,) the male might become skittish, and could eat the juveniles. If this happens, put the male back in the other tank, and leave the female.

The parents will continue to look after their offspring for another 10-14 days. After that, they can look after themselves. Once this happens, it’s safe to move the mother back into the usual tank. Introduce the juveniles into the tank over time.

Once the fry have established themselves, start feeding them. You should feed them with milled live food and dry flakes and pellets. You should also renew the water twice a week, to keep them healthy.

Male Convict Cichlid with beautiful fins taken by @catfishriver on Instagram
Thanks to @catfishriver on Instagram for this pic of a male Convict Cichlid with beautiful fins


Looking After Your Convict Cichlids

As we mention in the Feeding section, they aren’t fussy when it comes to food options. Likewise, this also applies to water conditions and environment. They are remarkable when it comes to adaptability. In the wild, they live in a variety of habitats and conditions.

When you are planning the tank, there are a few things you should take into account. First, the layout of the decor. As we mentioned earlier, in the Origins section. They prefer habitats with spaces they can hide. There should be plenty of hidey-holes.

(You can make these with arranging rocks, lying down on-the-side flower pots is a good idea.)

Other essential items in decor include plants and flat stones. (This is for the females to lay their eggs on if you choose to breed them.) Make sure the plants are tough and hardy. These fish like to dig, and so delicate plants could be ripped out in the process.

They aren’t demanding when it comes to decor. So include the items mentioned above, and you’ll be right to go.

Second, is the size of the tank. 52 gallons, (200 L) is an excellent place to start, for a pair. If you have a group or more fish, you’ll need to go bigger.

It’s also essential that you have a powerful, external filter. The digging from the fish could mess with the filter. Also, the constant flow of substrate into the water can make it clogged, so your filter needs to be powerful.

Conditions Of The Tank

Read on to find out how to make the ideal conditions for your Convict Cichlids to thrive.


Convict Cichlids are a tropical freshwater fish, from a warm climate. So, the best temperature range is one that is warm. We recommend 79–84 °F (26–29 °C).

PH And Hardness

The Convict Cichlid is quite flexible when it comes to water conditions. In the wild, it can and does live in all sorts of environments and situations. However, keeping the pH and hardness constant and unchanging is vital in the home aquarium. For the pH 6.6–7.8 is best, and for the hardness, 6-8 dGH.

Suitable Tank Mates

Convict Cichlids are some of the most aggressive fish out there. They will attack most fish, even those twice their size. If provoked, they can and will do damage; sometimes they attack for no reason at all. On top of that, they have a set of sharp teeth and could injure the fish they are bullying.

To put things into perspective, think of the aquarium as a school playground. The adult convict cichlid is like the feared bully, the one that no-one wants to get on the wrong side of.

So, this isn’t the best fish to keep with other fish. However, and we say but, you can keep it with other fish. However! They must be held under specific conditions, with particular species.

First, we’ll list the conditions you should have the Convict Cichlids under. This is in preparation for the tank mates. Then we’ll list the best Convict Cichlid Tank Mates.

The aquarium you have must be large enough for all the fish. This is critical. You should also introduce your fish to their tank mates as early in their life as possible. That will help them get used to them. Because adults are more aggressive than juveniles. The aggressiveness will decrease if you introduce them early.

Make sure the fish you are choosing are large fish, as large as you can afford/accommodate. This will minimize the risk of them being attacked, by a small amount.

Keep the Convict Cichlids in pairs, not groups. If you have a couple, don’t bother with tank mates.

Here is a list of the best tank mates.

More Convict Cichlids. They work quite well with their species.

Other Cichlid Species. Make sure they are large and have aggressive/semi-aggressive demeanors. Examples would include, Firemouth Cichlids, Jewel Cichlids, and the Blue Acara. Also, the Red Terror, Green Terror, Jack Dempsey and Yellow Lab Cichlids.

Flowerhorn Fish. These are larger, tough fish, ones that Convict Cichlids don’t usually pick a bone with.

Other Large Fish. Similar to the Flowerhorn, these fish are large and sturdy. Examples would include, Tinfoils, Plecos, Irridescent Shark and Clarias.

Small Female Convict Cichlid taken by @a.e_aquatics On Instagram
Thanks to @a.e_aquatics on Instagram for this pic of a small female Convict cichlid



Convict Cichlids eat all sorts of food sources, so they are classified as omnivorous. In the wild, they eat a variety of things. These include invertebrates, such as small insects and worms. In the plant department, they eat many types of algae and plant matter.

Convict Cichlids are not fussy eaters. In fact, far from it. Some have compared this fish to the Labrador, as it eats nearly everything you choose to give them. 🙂

However, in saying this, don’t feed them whatever! They may accept practically everything. However, don’t feed them whatever. You must put thought and planning into their food. You don’t want a sick fish.

These fish need a plentiful and varied diet, without it, they’re not going to survive for long.

If you are wondering about the feeding frequency for Convict Cichlids, we have the answer. Feeding them twice a day is best. Don’t make the amount of feed too big.

(Also, make sure you remove any uneaten food within 24 hours from the tank. However, this only applies if you don’t have fish that feed on the bottom.)

When planning to keep them as pets, there are a few foods to consider.

Flake and Pellets: Many aquarists recommend Flake and Pellet Foods. These should make up the most of the food that you feed Convict Cichlids. Make sure the foods that you choose are high-quality, and well-rated by users. Another pointer to remember is to make sure it’s designed for Cichlids.

Live Foods: These fulfill the meaty requirements in their diet. Recommended foods to feed them would be Tubifex worms, brine shrimp bloodworms, and Daphnia. They enjoy these types of foods and will eat them with gusto. However, remember everything in moderation.

Other Options To Consider

Frozen Foods: If you don’t have access to live foods, or they are out of your budget range, frozen foods are a good idea. Feeding them the same foods (Tubifex worms, brine shrimp blood worms, Daphnia,) just frozen, is an easy and convenient alternative.

Insects & Invertebrates: As we mentioned earlier, an integral part of Convict Cichlids’ diet. So, if you can, feeding them a few live insects now and then is great. They also like Mosquito Larvae, throwing them in the tank will keep them busy for a while.

Things To Avoid

Overfeeding: As with all other fish, if not all animals, stuffing them is a definite no-no! This could make your fish sick, and mess with their digestive system.

Meaty Foods: Don’t feed them any meats that humans eat, (lamb, chicken, beef, pork,). This is because it’s bad for their digestive systems.

Popular Types Of Convict Cichlids
Convict Cichlids have been in the aquarium trade for quite a while now. They are well-known among fish-keepers. Unlike Peacock Cichlids, which are a genus and include 22 individual species. Convict Cichlids are a single species.

However, and saying this, there a few variants of Convict Cichlids. They look quite different from the original. This is because they have been bred to display specific colors. Sometimes, there is a mutation in these fish that is known as “Leucism.” It happens in many animals, not only fish.

When an individual has this, the pigments in their skin and scales don’t appear or are weak. So the animal seems paler, without most pigmentation. (It’s not to be confused with Albinism, which is a complete lack of pigments.)

The colorations that breeders have developed are Gold and White. There is also a third, that is the more commonly known, pink.

Pink Convict Cichlids are the only color variant to have an official classification. That of which, we have listed here.

Name: Convict Cichlid

Scientific name: Amatitlania nigrofasciata

Other name: Zebra Cichlid

Name: Pink Convict

Scientific name: Archocentrus nigrofasciatus


Convict Cichlids are one of the staples in the aquarium trade. They have been on the market for many years, and have every intention of staying. Many fish-keepers find them a delight to bring home, and if you choose to do the same, you won’t be disappointed. In short, Convict Cichlids are easy to keep.

Do you have a Convict Cichlid, or are planning on getting one? Let us know.

If you found this helpful, then excellent! You can help other people find this resource by sharing it on social media, and telling your friends. If you have any tips, recommendations or suggestions that somehow weren’t mentioned in this list, please, by all means, share them in the comments. Thank you for reading.

Terror Of The Tank – Red Devil Cichlid (Amphilophus labiatus) – Complete Species Guide

A beautiful but violent cichlid, this fish is a vibrant red color. It has a temperament and personality to match. There’s a reason it’s called the Red Devil Cichlid!

Red Devil Cichlid taken by @klickahsaahn on Instagram header
Red Devil Cichlid thansk to @klickahsaahn on Instagram

This cichlid gets quite large when it comes to the age of an adult. Very aggressive and territorial. It’s not a good idea to give this cichlid tank mates. If you put another male Red Devil in the tank, they will probably try and kill each other, so probably don’t try that.

They will also hunt down smaller fish if in the tank and kill them. It can act to ‘play’ like a dog might, follow the owner around, or beg for food. A word of warning though, it sometimes will bite the owner’s finger, so be careful!

If you’re thinking of having a Red Devil Cichlid, (or a few) as a pet. Or you have one and are looking for more information, or you’re just curious, you have come to the right place! We have everything on the Red Devil Cichlids right here, so read on.

Table Of Contents:

Red Devil Cichlid Care – Predator Fish? Tank Mates?

Basic Facts

Name: Red Devil Cichlid

Scientific Name: Amphilophus labiatus (Previously Known As Cichlasoma labiatum)

Group: Freshwater

Size Of The Fish: 15.0 inches (38.10 cm)

Temperament: Extremely Aggressive and territorial

Aquarium Size Required: Extra-Large

Where It Swims: Around the bottom

Care Difficulty Rating: Medium

Good Paired With: Very aggressive so not such a good idea to give it tank mates. It’s best to keep a single pair together in a tank to themselves. The pair will sometimes tolerate other fish, but not recommended.


This fish comes from Central America. It has been introduced to Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and Singapore. Red Devil Cichlids come from several lakes in Nicaragua. These fish were previously known as Cichlasoma labiatum. These fish likes to inhabit open water and are rarely found in rivers.

They can be found swimming along rocks with crevices. The fish do this so if they need to retreat; so they can hide among the rocks. Their habitat is very dangerous. It’s the only freshwater lake in Central America that has a significant population of bull sharks.

Female Red Devil Cichlid taken by @christhefisherman
Female Red Devil Cichlid taken by @christhefisherman

This makes the crevices extremely useful and essential.

They can have a lifespan of ten to twelve years or more if looked after correctly and with care. This fish is called the Red Devil for a good reason. It’s because it has aggressive behavior, large teeth and it’s strong jaws, thus the name.


These fish get the first part of their name from their bright skin color. They are usually red, and a vibrant, rich red at that. Having these fish can brighten up your tank.

Their fins are pointed especially the anal and dorsal fins. Their usual fully grown size is 15″ (38cm). Yet, they become quite large. Sometimes even quite a few inches more than the typical length.

In the wild, they have been known to be dark brown to gray which helps them to match their surroundings. It’s the perfect camouflage!

However, in the aquarium, they look different. Red Devil Cichlids are usually bright red, yellow and sometimes white. They have thick rubbery lips that are red, and occasionally black. In the wild, their mouths are larger.

As with many species, all across the animal kingdom. It can be difficult to determine the sex of the individual. But here are a few pointers to help you out.

Markings and Colors: They are usually red, yellow, white pink and orange. As said below, males have a lump on their heads. It is more common in males other than in females.

Size and Shape: Males tend to develop a ‘lump’ on their head. Also, males will usually be larger than females and will have more pointed anal and pelvic fins.

Behavior: During breeding season, you can quickly tell which is which. Males will become aggressive and territorial. Make sure to have no other fish in the tank at the time; they will suffer and get chased and harassed.

Even if after you’ve followed all the pointers listed above, and you still can’t tell, don’t worry. You can ask your local vet or expert. That should clear up the problem.


Now, a word of warning. Breeding these fish isn’t the best idea for beginners or novice breeders. They get temperamental when the breeding season rolls around, so you need to be careful.

Also, before you start the process, make sure the fish you are planning to breed, are moved out of the tank. Alternatively, move the tank mates, (if any) out. Make sure there are no other fish in the tank besides the two, else they will be harassed endlessly.

Here, we list everything you need to know on breeding Red Devil Cichlids.

Thanks to @f22bcichlids For this Photo of two Red Devil Cichlids - Everything you needed to know about Red Devil Cichlids. Find out how to keep your Red Devil Cichlids happy and healthy. | Contented Fish
Thanks to @f22bcichlids For this Photo of two Red Devil Cichlids

Red Devil Cichlids are monogamous. This means that they will pick only one partner to mate with. Once they have chosen, they will stay with this fish for the rest of their life. Breeding season can become a hair-raising time for all fish in the tank.

So make sure to observe them during this time.

The male will ‘court’ the female, which isn’t how we would think of courting. They chase and harass the female. Yeah, friendly. Some aquarists recommend using tank separators to give the female a break once in a while. You wouldn’t want her to be hurt.

Once this is over, they will mate, and the spawning will begin. Like other cichlids, make sure you put a flat rock for them to put their eggs. The female will lay the eggs on the rock, and the male will fertilize them. On average, she will have a clutch size of 600-700.

Make sure to provide plenty of hiding spots in the breeding area. This will give the opportunity for the fish to have a break from each other if needed.

Both parents will protect and raise the eggs. The female will look after them will they are in the eggs, and they hatch after three to four days. Once they have hatched, the parents will transfer the young fry into a pit dug in the sand. They will live off their egg sacs for the first week.

After that, you will need to feed them. The recommended food is artificial feed designed for Cichlid fry. Or, finely crushed flake foods. Once they are grown, you can feed them the food you feed the other Red Devil Cichlids.


Looking After Red Devil Cichlids

Red Devil Cichlids are easy to look after regarding tank maintenance and care. However, their aggressive nature puts them at a definite ‘medium’ care difficulty rating.

On tank conditions, they’re quite easy, provided you keep the water clean. They’re not a stickler for specific water. But, keeping it within the requirements we’ve listed here, it should keep them happy.

What they are a stickler for, however, is the numbers they are kept in. A definite no-no is keeping a group, as if there’s more than one male in the group, well… Long story short, they’re going to fight. That’s always got to end badly.

So, try to buy a female and male, and keep them in the tank together. Make sure to introduce them to each other as early as possible in life. When they become sexually mature, they will be ready for breeding. This will make the breeding process much more manageable. (If you’re planning on doing that.)

The smallest tank size for an individual fish is 55 gallons (208 L). However, if you’re keeping a pair, you need something much bigger. 150 gallons (568 L) is the optimal size for a couple.

These fish need not only space, but they also need hiding places. Sometimes, the couple might need a break from each other. They’re also territorial, so make sure the tank is big enough each fish to have their territory.

Then there is the question of decor. For these fish, keeping it simple is a good idea. Flat rocks are essential, as that is where (like most Cichlids) females do their spawning on. Red Devils love to dig, make sure the plants you put in there are artificial.


Mango The Red Devil Cichlid taken by @paco_147g on Instagram
Mango The Red Devil Cichlid taken by @paco_147g on Instagram


The clumsy actions of the fish will destroy the root systems of natural plants.

This fish can tolerate most water conditions, keep in mind that it will attack heater and filters. They also may damage aquarium equipment as well. Of course, there’s a simple solution to this problem.

Secure them with suction cups to the walls. To prevent the problem, you can hide them behind a series of rocks. It’s also a good idea to put some stones on the sides of the tank. Rockwork makes these fish feel safe and mostly reduce aggression.

Something to remember is to put barriers on the heaters, so the fish don’t injure themselves.

IMPORTANT. Make sure to have, and put a cover on the tank when you aren’t performing maintenance. Red Devil Cichlids have a nasty habit of jumping out of the aquarium. Well, you wouldn’t want to wake up one morning and find a fish on the carpet!

Conditions Of The Tank

We can’t stress enough the importance of keeping the tank water clean. You need to change the water weekly. These fish are susceptible to pollutants and pH instability. Change 15-20% of the water. There’s also another reason you need to keep up the changes.

Like Convict Cichlids, these fish are very messy! On top of that, they produce a lot of waste. So you can keep on top of the Red Devils, you should consider having a dual filter. They will also move decorations around, so try to make sure everything is fastened down.

When you replace the water, make sure to clean the sides of the tank with a gravel cleaner. This is, so you remove all the build-up of decomposing organic matter.

These fish don’t have any specific lighting requirements, keeping it normal is fine.

Lighting: The lighting in the tank doesn’t need to be high or low, use normal lighting.

Bottom Lining: The bottom of the tank needs to be lined with sand.

Water Current: The current in the water must be moderate.

These fish are very sensitive to pollutants and ph instability. It is imperative that you clean the water weekly. Dual filters are recommended in this instance.

However, it is very messy, so make sure to keep the water clean. Several changes a week would be enough.

Red Devil Cichlids come from a tropical climate, so they need a warm tank. The best temperature for these fish is 73-79 °F (23-26 °C). However, when it is breeding time, the temperature for the Red Devils will need to be 77 °F (25 °C).

pH and Hardness
Their pH needs to be in the range of 6.0-8.0. Its tank water needs to be very hardy to keep the fish healthy. 6 – 25 dGH is the recommended range.

Suitable Tank Mates

Since this fish is aggressive, it isn’t such a good idea giving it tank mates. If you do though, please keep in mind this important fact. If other large males Red Devils are put in the tank with another male, they will try to kill each other. Also, they will hunt down and kill any smaller fish.

A male and a female pair will sometimes tolerate in the same tank. Other large Central American fish would sometimes make suitable tank mates. Be sure to check they can protect themselves. (Examples, Firemouth Cichlids, Convict Cichlids, and Jaguar Cichlids.)

Give the fish plenty of hiding spaces such as rocks, wood, and artificial plants. Don’t bother with real plants, as they will be eaten, shredded or get uprooted.

You can keep Red Devils with other fish when it is growing up. However, keep in mind. These fish will not tolerate other fish in their tank when they have fully matured.

The only other fish they will sometimes tolerate in the same tank is other Red Devils. However, it isn’t reliable, and the level of tolerance depends on the individual fish.

It isn’t guaranteed that putting more hiding spaces will stop the fish from being aggressive. This is the same for the fish trying to get more territory and acting rudely to other fish.

In short, it’s best to keep the fish by itself, or in a couple, if you don’t want any nasty incidents going on in your aquarium.


In the wild, they have a varied diet. Red Devil Cichlids eat worms, small fish, snails and other bottom-living creatures. It likes open water and will rarely be found in rivers, or water bodies with limited space.

Since it is an omnivore, it will need some vegetable food, but mostly meaty food. Have these fish on a varied diet, don’t overfeed them, and don’t give them the same food all the time. Keep these pointers in mind, and you’ll have a happy, healthy fish.

On feeding frequency, they should have two to three feedings a day, of moderate amounts.

When planning to keep them as pets, there are a few foods to consider.

Crustaceans: Prawns or shrimp, whether frozen or fresh, make a good diet staple.

Artificial Food: Pellets, designed for Cichlids or flake foods, could do as well.

The ideal diet you should give it would be prawns and shrimps. With frozen worms or blood worms and vegetable foods.

Other Options To Consider

Vegetable Foods: This will fill the vegetable requirement in their diet. Recommended foods include finely chopped spinach and cucumber.

Things To Avoid

Red meat. Three reasons. It’s not part of their natural diet, it has got far too much protein and fat in it for this fish. It’s also too rich for this fish to be able to digest. So, it’s not a recommended food. Full stop. So, if you want to give it to them, only do it very occasionally.


As you know, it’s not very good for beginner Aquarists to have a Red devil. You need to have experience with aggressive fish and know what you are up against.

However, in all, despite the hot temper of the fish, and their unpredictability. They are an enjoyable fish to have in your aquarium. Their bright, bold pattern brings vibrant color to the tank.

Enjoy looking after your Red Devil, and if you have a Red Devil Cichlid, let us know in the comments.

If you found this post helpful, then excellent! You can help other people find this resource by sharing it on social media, and telling your friends. If you have any tips, recommendations or suggestions that somehow weren’t mentioned in this list. Please, by all means, share them in the comments. Thank you for reading.

The Big Cat Of The Water – Jaguar Cichlid (Parachromis managuensis) – Complete Species Guide

So, you’ve chosen to include the Jaguar Cichlid in your aquarium, have you?

First off, it’s a good choice on your part, especially regarding appearance. They are beautiful fish.

However, be warned. These fish aren’t for the fainthearted. Or those who don’t have much experience in the ways of fish-keeping. Jaguar Cichlids are some of the larger fish in the aquarium trade, and they can be very temperamental.

Spotted Jaguar CichlidJaguar Cichlids are very aggressive and territorial. You should exercise caution in keeping them.

In saying that, if you provide them with the right conditions, tank, and feed, they will be a pleasure to keep. Their coloration and size will make an excellent addition to your tank. They are very visually pleasing.

If you’re thinking of having a Jaguar Cichlid, (or a few) as a pet. Or have one and are looking for more information, or you’re just curious, you’ve come to the right place! We have everything on Jaguar Cichlids right here, so read on.

Table Of Contents:

Jaguar Cichlid With Tank Mates

Basic Facts

Name: Jaguar Cichlid

Scientific Name: Parachromis managuensis

Group: Freshwater

Size Of The Fish: Large

Temperament: Aggressive

Aquarium Size Required: Large

Where It Swims: Bottom/Middle Areas

Care Difficulty Rating: Medium

Good Paired With: Other Jaguar Cichlids, Aggressive Cichlid Species


Jaguar Cichlids are yet another Cichlid species that come from Central America. These fish are freshwater, living in most lakes and basins throughout several countries. They come from the basins in Nicaragua, but they can be found in Honduras and Costa Rica.

Jaguar Cichlid taken by @fishy_wishes_ on Instagram - Here we share everything you need to know about Jaguar Cichlids. Find out how to keep your Jaguar Cichlids happy and healthy. | Contented Fish
Thanks to @fishy_wishes for this photo of a large Jaguar Cichlid

However, now they have spread throughout Central America. This is because of commercial anglers and human intervention. These include Salvador, Guatemala, Panama, and the southern areas of Mexico. They are also present in Florida, in the Us, and even Singapore.

The habitats of their preference are usually lakes that are cloudy. They also have an abundance of aquatic life. They also prefer warmer water, without too much oxygen. Jaguar Cichlids live in water bodies that have muddy bottoms.

However, they can sometimes be found in places with sandy bottoms, such as ponds and canals.

Their common name ‘Jaguar Cichlid,’ comes from the unique spots that cover their body. The pattern of the spots has been likened to that of a Jaguar.

The second part of their scientific name, Parachromis managuensis, comes from the habitat where the first of their species was found. The ‘holotype,’ (the first known specimen of a species,) came from Lake Managua in Nicaragua.

Today, that lake has a large and thriving population of these fish.

Jaguar Cichlids are known under many different names. You may have heard of one, or a few of them. Their other names include Aztec Cichlid, Managua Cichlid, and Managuense Cichlid. They are also known as the Spotted Guapote, Guapote Tigre, and the Jaguar Guapote.

(FYI: “Guapote Tigre” is Spanish, and it means the Guapote Tiger/Jaguar.)



Jaguar Cichlids, when we look at them, they remind us of some of the magnificent big cats. Well, take a look at them. They’re called Jaguar Cichlids for a reason!

The majority of their colors may consist of tones. But, keep them in clean conditions, and the patterns stand out. The extra colors vary for each; it can be interesting to see how they develop.

As with many species, all across the animal kingdom. It can be difficult to determine the sex of the individual. But here are a few pointers to help you.

Markings and Colours: In the earlier stages of life, the males have more spots. However, as they grow older, they begin to lose them. They reach a stage where the spots disappear entirely. The females go through a similar process, but they keep most of theirs.

Another difference is the edging of the males fins are brightly colored. The female does have coloration, but hers is less vibrant.

Size and Shape: The males are always bigger than the females. Usually, there is an inch or so difference in length. They also have broader and sharply pointed proctal and dorsal fins. The females are rounder in shape.

Jaguar Cichlidae Parachromis managuensis

Behavior: As with most species, the sexes become prevalent during the breeding season. The males become very aggressive, ready to impress the females. Also, and this happens all year round, the females tend to stay in the bottom area of the tank.

(Even if after you’ve followed all the pointers listed above, and you still can’t tell, ask your local vet or expert. That should clear up the problem.)

Jaguar Cichlids, besides being large, are robust fish. They’re big in all directions.

They have light-colored skin, usually being pale yellowish brown, to yellow to bronze. When they are younger, they display dark-grey/black vertical stripes across their body. However, it completely changes when they become mature.

Slowly, the vertical stripes begin to disappear, and they are replaced with dark spots. They are present all over the body but are prominent on the gill covers and lower sides. They also have a horizontal line of these dots across the bottom of their body.

Like the Jaguar, no two body patterns of the fish are the same, and none of them have the same amount of spots. Their fins are always dark-grey/black, becoming significantly darker during breeding. Sometimes, their skin has a light blueish-green to a purple tint.

As Jaguar Cichlids are predatory fish, they have sharp teeth at the back of their throat. It makes hunting easier. They also have sharp edging on the ends of their fins. These are for protecting themselves from other predatory fish.

In the wild, these are whoppers of fish. The average size is 24 inches, (60cm), and the females being smaller. However, there’s no reason to panic. You don’t need to start thinking that you’ll need to punch out a wall to accommodate them.

Fortunately for aquarists, they don’t grow this big in the aquarium. Males grow to an average of 16″ (40cm), and for females, it’s 13″ (35cm). Still, they are still quite large fish. So, it’s safe to say that these fish are some of the largest in the

Jaguar Cichlid taken by @project_cichlids
A lovely Jaguar Cichlid pic taken by @project_cichlids

They are some of the longest-living Cichlids. Their lifespan is 10-15 years, but most live for around 15. Many experts say that with proper care, and a healthy diet, you can extend their lifespan for much longer.


A warning before we begin, breeding Jaguar Cichlids isn’t for amateurs. These fish get unpredictable during the breeding season. They can be hard to maintain, and all sorts of problems can arise if they aren’t looked after well.

However, if you are willing to rise to the challenge, we commend you. In the long run, breeding these beautiful fish is worth it. Here, we have everything you need to know on how to help these fish reproduce smoothly.

So, as usual, it starts with the breeding season. For Jaguar Cichlids, there isn’t a set time of the year; it depends on the conditions of the water. Specifically, the temperature. They start to prepare for reproducing when the water gets warmer.

So, in the aquarium, when you want them to begin, it’s time to raise the temperature. Do this over a period of two days. This is so you don’t shock the fish with it suddenly being warm. The recommended temperature is 82° F (28° C).

Get ready; this is where the problems could arise. The male/s will get aggressive and could attack tank mates, (if you have any.) When they get like this, move all the Jaguar Cichlids out of that aquarium. Put them into a particular breeding tank.

(If you don’t have one of these, using a tank divider is a good solution.)

If you are keeping these fish for breeding, it’s best to raise them in a pair from as early in their lives as possible. A definite no-no is introducing a female straight before they breed. Why? Well, the males have a nasty habit of sometimes killing an unknown female. Enough said.

They begin to court each other, but this may take a while. If you wish to speed up the process, there is a way that you can do that. If you change half of the water in their section twice a week, it should make a response.

Once the courtship has finished, the spawning begins. The usual spot of preference is a flat rock, so make sure you include this for them. The female lays the eggs; the male fertilizes them. The number is always variable, but she can lay up to 5000 eggs! However, the usual range is 3000-5000 eggs.

The male then stays to protect the unhatched offspring, and the mother looks after the eggs. If you watch them will they do this, you will notice that the female flaps her fins around the breeding site. This is so the water is continually moving through, so she can provide oxygenated water for the eggs.

In 3-5 days, the eggs hatch, and the fish larvae emerge. As they are still encased in their yolk sacs, they provide food for the larvae. Because of this, there’s no need to feed them during the first week of their lives.

Once they consume the yolk sac, this is when the parents take responsibility for feeding them. The fry are fed organic matter, and they can’t swim at this stage. Let another week pass by.

By now, the fry are free-swimming. What you do now is up to you, but here are some recommended options. The parents can continue to look after them for another six weeks. That’s until they are old enough to look after themselves.

However, some Jaguar Cichlids may consume their fry, if they are left in with them for more than two weeks. If they show signs of doing this, remove the fry immediately.

Suggested foods for the fry would be baby brine shrimp. Also, artificial feed designed for fish hatchlings.

Looking After Jaguar Cichlids

Jaguar Cichlids are aggressive fish. As much as you may not like it, it can’t be helped; it’s part of their natural temperament. With specific aquarium and water conditions, you may notice a change. Believe it or not, their aggression level can lower.

Looking after these magnificent fish well takes some specific planning. However, if you do it right, you’ll reap nothing but good results. Read on to find out how to keep your fish thriving.

Let’s start with the sizing of the tank. As a rule of thumb, the bigger the tank, and the more space they have, the less aggressive they will be. It’s best to keep them in couples. (For reasons we discussed earlier,) so the sizing we recommend reflects that.

The best Jaguar Cichlid tank size is 100 gallons, (378 L). It might seem huge, but it’s the best size for these fish. It’s especially important that they have a territory they can call their own. Because of this, 100 gallons is an excellent size.

Then there is the decor. There are two pointers to keep in mind, keep it simple, and keep it to a minimum. There’s no point having lots of nice-looking decorations. Only to have them knocked over all the time. Yes, they do that.

As with most Cichlids, include a flat rock as a spawning site. Make sure you have hidey-holes and cave-like areas. But balance it out with plenty of open swimming space. Then there is the question of plants.

Many aquarists advise not to have any plants at all. They like to dig, and the plants could be uprooted, or torn apart by clumsy maneuvers. However, you can have plants, only if you choose specific ones. They must be robust and hardy and have sturdy root systems.

Alternatively, you must place them in pots. Choose ones that attach themselves to driftwood and other structures. In the end, it’s up to you.

Top Tip. These fish prefer dark, cloudy habitats in the wild. It would give the fish a good experience if you were to replicate this. An easy way to do this is to chuck a handful or two into the filter, and a bag of aquarium safe peat. (Remember to change the leaves every two weeks.)

IMPORTANT! Your aquarium must have a tight-fitting lid. Why? Jaguar Cichlids can and will jump out of the tank, and there’s no way you want that happening!

Spawing Jaguar Cichlids taken by @xtrippyhippyx
Spawing Jaguar Cichlids taken by @xtrippyhippyx

Conditions Of The Tank

Once you’ve set up the tank correctly, and as you like it, looking after Jaguar Cichlids is easy. Despite the large size of the tank and fish, they don’t require a massive amount of maintenance.

As with any aquarium, the water conditions change over time, and they need to be regulated. For these fish, use a large filter. Recommended types would be simp or canister filters. This is because you need a powerful one to make sure the water is cleaned correctly.

Over time, nitrates and phosphates can build up. The hardness of the water can increase with the evaporation of the water. You don’t want any of these to grow too much, as it can be harmful to them. Like a few other Cichlids, these cichlids are sensitive to pH instability and pollutants.

Because of this, you need to replace 20-30% of the water twice a week, if the tank has much fish in it. If not, and you only have a few or a couple, you can do it every two weeks. When you are performing this chore, use a gravel cleaner. This is to remove the decomposing organic matter.

Make sure you keep your lighting low or subdued. They prefer it that way.


These fish like the temperature to be slightly warm, as they are from a tropical climate. The best Jaguar Cichlid temperature range is 74-79° F (24-28° C).

However, keep in mind that sometimes, the higher the temperature, the more aggressive the fish is. Because of this, it’s best to keep the temperature around 74° F (24° C).

PH And Hardness

Jaguar Cichlids thrive best in water conditions with 10-15 dGH, and a pH of 7-8.7.

Suitable Tank Mates

Now, before we start, there’s something important that you need to know. These fish aren’t the most compatible when it comes to other inhabitants of the aquarium. How much so?

Take a breeding pair of Jaguar Cichlids for instance. If you know a thing or two about Cichlids. You’d be aware that a reproducing couple isn’t the friendliest fish to be around. Well, these fish take it to a whole other level. Sometimes, they’ve been known to kill fish that get too close.

So, yes. Aggressive. They don’t do this to only smaller fish. No, the larger fish have to watch out too.

However! We say this with caution; you can keep them with other fish. You will need to be very selective, cautious, and monitor them closely. This becomes especially important if you are breeding them.

In preparation for the tank mates, you need a large tank. The usual recommended size of 100 gallons, (378 L), is a suitable size. It leaves lots of space for the fish and the Jaguar Cichlids. You should always choose companions that are larger than the Jaguar.

Now, onto the recommended Jaguar Cichlid tank mates.

Others Of Their Species. This is good, only make sure to raise them together from the start.

Other Cichlid Species. You need to choose large, aggressive Cichlids; this will lower the amount of conflict. Recommended species are Red Terrors, Green Texas Cichlids, and Oscar Fish. Also, the Jack Dempsey, Carpintis Cichlids, and the Convict.

Catfish. These are big fish. They tend to have a temperament that doesn’t cause them to get into many conflicts with other fish. Choose a large type of Catfish or a common pleco.

Tinfoil Barbs. These fish hail from the South-East of Asia, and are a peaceful fish. This and their size make them an excellent choice.

Another Option Would Be The Bala Shark. Despite the name, it isn’t a real shark.


In the wild, these fish are carnivorous. Specifically, they are piscivores, which means they eat other fish. However, this doesn’t say they only eat that. They eat a variety of meat, but their diet mostly consists of other fish.

They are also what is known as ‘raptorial’ feeders. If you don’t know what this means, don’t worry. In biology, it means predatory on other animals. It also says that they aren’t fussy eaters. In fact, they dine on almost everything that moves, and things they can put in their mouth.

Something to keep in mind is that these fish love to eat! They have massive appetites.

When planning to keep them as pets, there are a few foods to consider.

Live Foods. This should make up the bulk of their diet. They are carnivores, and the diet you give them should reflect this. There are many foods to choose from, and we have listed them here. Make sure you don’t feed them only one of the options, variety is essential.

The foods include bloodworms, ghost shrimp, black worms, and mealworms. They also like minnows, crayfish, crickets, even small frogs.

Frozen Foods. A good option as well. You don’t have to feed them only live food, a balance of both of them is excellent as well. Feed them the same foods, only frozen, as mentioned in the live foods.

Other Options To Consider

Pellets and Flakes. They don’t always eat these, and shouldn’t make up the bulk of their diet. However, they make an excellent supplement/addition. Keep in mind that sometimes your Jaguar Cichlids may not accept these. Don’t be alarmed. It’s only their preference.

Remember that the food you choose must be of high-quality, and designed for Cichlids.

Things To Avoid

Meaty Food. Don’t feed them any meats that humans eat; it can make them feel ill.

Overfeeding. As with all fish, feeding them too much is never a good idea. Feeding them a considerable amount daily is the best feeding frequency.


Jaguar Cichlids. Aggressive, territorial, large, and sometimes, the terror of the tank.

They are beautiful, uniquely colored fish, and can be a delight to watch.

They’re a fish of many opposites, but for us? That’s what makes them interesting.

If you’re looking for other colorful Cichlids, Peacocks, Jack Dempseys, and the Firemouth are a good starting place.

If you found this helpful, then excellent! You can help other people find this resource by sharing it on social media, and telling your friends. If you have any tips, recommendations or suggestions that somehow weren’t mentioned in this list, please, by all means, share them in the comments. Thank you for reading.

Tough Little Guy With Iridescent Scales – Jack Dempsey Cichlid (Rocio octofasciata) – Complete Species Guide

Jack Dempsey Cichlids aren’t that hard to take care of. (They’re not, say, Goldfish or Kissing Fish.)

They have many things going for them.

Jack Dempsey CichlidJack Dempseys are hardy, tough fish, that are low-maintenance. Not only that, but they’re colorful and reasonably priced.

The characteristic iridescent scales are a pleasure to look at. Moreover, their dark black skin makes it stand out even more. They are covered all over with these scales, in all sorts of colors, from light blue to a rich gold.

If you’re thinking of having a Jack Dempsey Cichlid, (or a few) as a pet. Or have one and are looking for more information, or you’re curious, you’ve come to the right place! We have everything on the Jack Dempsey Cichlid right here, so read on.

Table Of Contents:

Jack Dempsey Cichlid Care, Tank Mates, Fully Grown

Basic Facts

Name: Jack Dempsey Cichlid

Scientific Name: Rocio octofasciata

Group: Freshwater

Size Of The Fish: Medium

Temperament: Aggressive – Territorial

Aquarium Size Required: Medium

Where It Swims: Middle To Bottom Area

Care Difficulty Rating: Easy

Good Paired With: Other Jack Dempseys, Catfish, Goldfish


The Jack Dempsey Cichlid. As soon as we heard the name for the first time, one of us mused, “That’s got to be named after a human.” When we were doing the research, it turned out we were right. The Jack Dempsey in question was a professional boxer.

He was an American, and he wasn’t just any boxer. From 1919 to 1926, (7 years), he reigned as the World Heavyweight Champion! The Cichlid named after him has robust facial features and is an aggressive fish. So, they are named after him.

Despite the fish’s reputation for aggressiveness, they aren’t the most out of all the cichlids.

When it comes to the story behind the scientific name, (Rocio octofasciata), it’s as interesting. The genus name, (Rocio) was named after the author who wrote about the genus’s wife. The meaning of Rocio in Spanish means ‘morning dew’. This is more than likely a subtle reference to the ‘spots’ that sparkle in sunlight on the body of the Jack Dempsey.

(These ‘spots’ are scales, with different colorations on the skin.)

The other part of the scientific name, (octofasciata, the name of the individual fish). Supposedly comes from the Latin words “octo” (meaning eight) and “fascia” (meaning stripe or belt). So, putting those two together, you get “eight striped.” (Actually, often, they have a lot more stripes than that!)

They hail from various countries throughout Central America, (as the Firemouth Cichlid does.) These countries include Mexico, (the southern area and the Yucatan Penisula). Also, Honduras, Guatemala, and Belize.


That isn’t their only habitat in the wild. Whether accidentally or on purpose, the Jack Dempsey has been introduced to the United States, Thailand, and Australia. (In Thailand, the fish are Mexican Blue Frontosas.)

They are a freshwater fish, but very adaptable, as they live in lots of conditions and habitats. Some of their usual habitats include slow-moving water bodies. Such as rivers, streams, and even drainage ditches!

They can also be found in canals with sandy or muddy bottoms, and swamp areas, that are warm and murky. Sometimes, they appear in water with a slow flow of water, usually with a muddy bottom.

Large Jack Dempsey Taken By @maidenheadaquaticssummerhill - Everything you needed to know about Jack Dempsey Cichlids. Find out how to keep your Jack Dempsey Cichlids happy and healthy. | Contented Fish
Large Jack Dempsey thanks to @maidenheadaquaticssummerhill on Instagram



Jack Dempsey Cichlids are not the most colorful fish. But they make up for it with their unique ‘spots,’ and scales that sparkle in a variety of different colors.

As with many species, all across the animal kingdom, it can be difficult to determine the sex of the individual. Here are a few pointers to help you.

Markings and Colors.

The males of the Jack Dempsey Cichlid are brighter in color and patterns than the females. The male sometimes has a black, round spot at the base of the tail, and in the center of the body. In contrast, the female can have a have a small one on the lower edge of each gill cover. She can also have one on the dorsal fin.

Remember, regardless of the quantity and location of the spots on the fish. Females always have fewer spots than the male. The males also have more sparkly scales; they are more brilliant in color. They also have red edging around their anal and dorsal fins.

There is a stark difference in the cheeks, too. A male has blue spots directly back from the eyes, and no spots down near their mouth. A female has blue markings across the whole length of the cheek.

Size and Shape: Like many Cichlids, the differences in sizes and shapes of the sexes are minimal. But if you know what you’re looking for, you can usually discover the sex. As usual, the males are bigger than the females. They also have a longer and pointier dorsal fin. Another difference is they also have a bigger head, and a more defined and square jawline.

Behavior: When they are juveniles, it’s nearly impossible to tell their sex. However, even before they are mature, some males are aggressive to others in the tank. During the breeding season, the behavior, colorations, and attitudes of the fish change. So this is an excellent time to discover the sex of your fish.

Males become much brighter and more vibrant. They also become much more aggressive and territorial than usual. Females sometimes change color too. When she is feeling frisky, sometimes she becomes very dark. The blue specks on her gills and jaw become brighter.

A beautiful Jack Dempsey Cichlid taken by @kevinmeeki
A beautiful Jack Dempsey Cichlid taken by @kevinmeeki

(Even if after you’ve followed all the pointers listed above, and you still can’t tell, ask your local vet or expert. That should clear up the problem.)

When the fish are born, and right through being a juvenile, their coloration is dull. They don’t have any of the spots or sparkly scales that Jack Dempseys are so easily recognized by. In fact, the colors develop quite slowly, taking a full year or more to appear. When the fish matures is the time it becomes vibrant.

They have purplely-gray skin, with iridescent scales that are present all over the body. These come in the colors of light green, blue and gold, which all vary in their shades. That is their natural coloration. But there are a few other variations that have been developed by breeders, which we talk about here.

One of the main features that distinguish them from other cichlids is two grey-black bars on their face. They extend from the top of the head to the eyes and are positioned between the eyes. They also have a series of dark bars going vertically across the body.

These fish are known to have changes in their color, due to many factors. Their colors change when they age. If they get stressed, they become paler, and their spots and markings are less vibrant. Of course, the male’s colors become brighter during the breeding season.

The Jack Dempsey is a medium-to-large sized fish, which grows to a maximum of 10″, but the range is 8-10″, (20-25 cm). They are usually smaller in the wild than they are in the home aquarium

They have a lifespan of 10-15 years, which is quite long for a fish!

Jack Dempsey Cichlid Taken By @jeans_zoo - Everything you needed to know about Jack Dempsey Cichlids. Find out how to keep your Jack Dempsey Cichlids happy and healthy. | Contented Fish
Thanks to @jeans_zoo on Instagram for this Photo of am Amazing Electric Blue Jack Dempsey



So, let’s move on to how Jack Dempseys go about the business that keeps their species alive and kicking. You know what we’re talking about, reproduction. Here we explain the processes which they go through, and how to breed them successfully.

It starts, (as with many fish), with the beginning of the breeding season. In the wild, it begins when the temperatures get warmer. If you are planning to breed them, it’s best to have several of the fish. Six is a good starter, as you’re likely to get more couples.

When the breeding season starts, it can be a bit of a risky time for the other fish that live in the tank. Make sure you watch the behavior of the Jack Dempsey Cichlids, especially the males. If they’re getting too aggressive, make sure you step in.

The males’ colors brighten, and their behavior becomes territorial. This is the time when they begin to pair off. If you don’t have that big a tank, make sure the pair isn’t bothering the fish in the aquarium. If they are, you need to separate the couple from the others.

There are two methods for doing this. If you have a separate tank set up for breeding, put the couple in there. If you don’t have that, placing a divider in the tank is a good idea too.

(Like other Cichlids, Jack Dempseys are monogamous, and they mate for life.)

Make sure you have a pre-cleaned, flat surface for the fish to spawn and lay their eggs on, as that’s what they do in the wild. Flat rocks, upturned flowerpots, or something similar is best. They also prefer an enclosed spot, so have something there that makes it protected.

The process of breeding goes like this. Jack Dempseys lay eggs, and the female lays her eggs on the chosen spot. The male follows after, fertilizing the eggs as he goes. Once the eggs are laid, the parents dig a pit around the area to hide the eggs from sight.

(Because of this, it’s essential you don’t have any plants near that they could accidentally dig up!)

As usual, the clutch size depends on the female. However, on average, the female lays 500-800 eggs. Both parents will guard the eggs protectively. Which is why, again, we stress the importance of keeping them away from other fish! The male gets even more aggressive at this point.

The eggs take around three-six (it depends on the depends on the temperature and conditions,) days to hatch. Then they are looked after regularly by the parents. Until they become fully mobile in another four. This is around the time they start being able to eat.

When this happens, here are a few foods to consider feeding them. Powdered fish food, newly-hatched brine shrimp and food designed for Cichlid fry are right foods to give them. When they develop into bigger juveniles, you can feed them the same food you give your adults.

Breeding Problems And Solutions

Jack Dempseys are easy to breed, but a few problems can arise. Here, we list them and give you solutions on how to prevent and fix them.

#1 When the fry hatch, the parents split the jobs. The male looks after the territory, keeping everyone safe. The female tends to the unhatched eggs, the larvae and juveniles. It seems a good idea, but sometimes, problems can arise.

If the male is neglecting his responsibility, or he’s too excited about it, this may infuriate the female. Usually, nothing happens. However, the worst thing that could happen is the parents may end up eating the eggs and larvae! That would ruin their (and your) hard work.

There’s no point waiting around to see if the problem will cool down or escalate. If it shows signs of rearing its ugly head, remove the male from the breeding site. Because, if you’ve put up the divider or they’re in another tank, there’s nothing to guard against.

#2 The female can lay up to 800 eggs. If you have a small tank, the aquarium may be too small to hold all the hatchlings. The female may not be able to look after them all. It could cause a strain on her. If she shows signs of being overwhelmed, now is the time to step in.

This method may seem cruel, but it’s the best thing you can do. Take 50% to 70% of the fry out of the tank. You can use them as live food for your other fish. This leaves the female with much less strain. She can concentrate on the remaining hatchlings.

Despite all this, Jack Dempsey Cichlids are attentive parents. They look after their offspring well.

Jack Dempseys Cichlids Taken By @rivers.2.reefs - Everything you needed to know about Jack Dempsey Cichlids. Find out how to keep your Jack Dempsey Cichlids happy and healthy. | Contented Fish
Thanks to @rivers.2.reefs on Instagram for this Photo of a Jack Dempsey With Gold Stripes


Looking After Your Jack Dempsey Cichlids

Jack Dempsey Cichlids aren’t that hard to take care of. (They’re not, say, Goldfish or Kissing Fish.) They’re an excellent choice for beginners, but not as easy as the Firemouth.

They have many things going for them. Jack Dempseys are hardy, tough fish, that are low-maintenance. Not only that, but they’re colorful and reasonable prices.

Planning your tank carefully is optimal for reducing problems. For both the Jack Dempseys and other tank mates. They are a medium-sized fish, so you don’t need a huge tank. 55 gallons is a good starting point, as it gives them plenty of space. The bigger the area, the less likely they are to be aggressive.

However, if you have lots of fish in with them, you’d want to go with a bigger tank. Having many fish there can make them feel cramped, and you don’t want. Many aquarists recommend the dimensions of 4 ft, or if you can manage it, 5 ft.

When deciding on the decor, we have mentioned a few good ideas in this post. But here is as much information as we could find. Remember, you want decor that is practical, makes the fish feel comfortable and looks nice. (If you’re into that sought of thing.)

Rocks, both flat and those that form caves and hidey-holes are integral to your tank. Make sure you place the stones first. Jack Dempsey Cichlids are known to dig into the substrate, so put them first to avoid the rocks falling. If you like it to look natural, decorating it with bogwood is ideal.

With plants, you need tough, hardy ones that either grows on the bottom or are floating. Try not to have too many, as it could clutter up the tank. Ideal ones that grow on the bottom are Anubias or the Java Fern.

Make sure you place the rocks and ground decor in a way that breaks up the aquarium into territories. So, the Jack Demspeys can establish themselves. Make sure you have vertical structures, so they have something to hide behind.

An important note. Despite everything, we’ve said about how aggressive Jack Demspey Cichlids can sometimes be. When you first buy them, they don’t live up to their name. No, seriously. They are quite shy, awkward, and afraid of their new surroundings.

Like any person who gets a new job or a job for the first time. Come on, admit it. You were scared, weren’t you?

They can be skittish when they’re like this, so you need to treat them with caution. It’s best to introduce them to their tank mates right from the start. (Don’t put them on their own first, if you delay this, it may come as a bigger shock.)

When you introduce them, make sure the lighting isn’t too bright, and there are places for them to hide.

Electric blue Jack Dempsey Cichlid - Taken By - @cichlid_obsession on Instagram - Everything you needed to know about Jack Dempsey Cichlids. Find out how to keep your Jack Dempsey Cichlids happy and healthy. | Contented Fish
Thanks to @cichlid_obbession on Instagram for this Photo of a Beautiful Electric Blue Jack Dempsey

Conditions Of The Tank

On the spectrum of non-adaptable to entirely flexible. Jack Dempsey Cichlids are veering towards altogether flexible. They don’t need super-specific conditions. But making sure the conditions are right is essential.

Make sure you keep the aquarium water clean. It should have no nitrite or ammonia in it. You can allow some nitrate to be in there, but the amount can’t be larger than 40mg in a liter. You can achieve this with the help of a strong, quality biofilter.

Also, be sure that the water is free of harmful nitrogen compounds. Though Jack Dempseys seem to be able to live with it, they tend not to live for very long.

Another critical thing to remember is to keep your lighting not too bright. They don’t like bright lights.

Like Peacock Cichlids, these fish are sensitive to pH instability and pollutants in the water. Exposed to these for too long, it could cause problems for the fish. The simplest way to solve this is to restock the water every two weeks. 15-20% is the desirable amount.

It becomes even more critical if the tank has much fish in it. When you do the water changes, make sure to use a gravel cleaner. This removes the decomposing organic matter, which is critical to do if you want to keep the fish healthy.


Jack Dempsey Cichlids are from Central America, and their habitats have a tropical climate. Because of this, the optimal temperature range is that of a warm one. The recommended range is 72–86 °F, (22–30 °C), with the best temperature being 73-76 °F, (23-26 °C).
PH And Hardness

Jack Dempsey Cichlids are quite flexible when it comes to water conditions. However, keeping the pH and hardness in a specific range is essential. The pH: 6-7; the hardness, 9-20 dGH.

Jack Dempsey cichlid Taken By @ourfishtank - Everything you needed to know about Jack Dempsey Cichlids. Find out how to keep your Jack Dempsey Cichlids happy and healthy. | Contented Fish
Thanks to @ourfishtank on Instagram for this pic of their Jack Dempsey


Suitable Tank Mates

The name of the fish comes from a heavyweight boxing world champion. You’re probably going to think that the Jack Dempsey Cichlid is like a local heavy! Rest assured, it is aggressive, yes, but it’s not going to be the terror of the fish tank.

Now, in saying this, you must be careful about which fish you place with your Jack Dempsey Cichlids. If you don’t, quite a few problems can, (and probably will), arise.

First, we’ve listed as many pointers, tips, and tricks to keeping your tank a smooth experience for all inhabitants. Then, we’ll list the suitable tank mates.

(FYI: Don’t panic, but sometimes they have been known to eat smaller tank mates.)

The first thing to take into account is the size of your tank. As a rule of thumb, the smaller the tank, the more fish, the more the Jack Dempsey will feel cramped. In turn, it’s likely to be more aggressive. So, if you’re planning on tank mates, make sure you have a big tank.

Second, is how many Jack Dempsey Cichlids you are planning to keep. When in groups, is the time they work best with other fish. If you have a pair for breeding, don’t have tank mates.

Third, is the qualities of the fish that you choose for tank mates. They should be larger than them, and also have a peaceful/non-aggressive temperament.

Now we’ve taken those things into account, here are the best tank mates for Jack Dempsey Cichlids.

When they are juveniles, they get along quite well with other South American Cichlids. However, they will more than likely become intolerant of these fish when they age. If any problems arise, it’s best to move them into a seperate tank.

Other Jack Dempseys Cichlids. This one’s a no-brainer. These fish are comfortable with their species.

Goldfish may come as some surprise, but yes, these are a tried and tested companion. The relationship works quite well. Make sure you choose a bigger goldfish, and also a ‘common’ one, not a ‘fancy’ one. Common goldfish, for example, a koi, get to 14″, so they’re big fish.

Other Types Of Cichlids are an excellent way to go. Sometimes, housing Cichlids with others can be problematic. But not if you choose the right species. If you have a big enough tank, it will be easy-going for all of them.

Recommended species would be Firemouth Cichlids, Acaras Cichlids, Green Terrors, and Oscars.

Kissing Fish. This would be one to avoid if you are a beginner, but if you feel you can, Kissing Fish would be an excellent choice. These are peaceful fish, and a bonus is they eat nearly the same food that Jack Dempseys do.

Banded Corydora, also known as bearded catfish, reach around 4″ inches in length. This, along with its temperament, and ease of feeding, make it a good choice if you’re a beginner.

Catfish are a good idea, as they are large, and tend to mind their own business.

Iridescent Jack Dempsey taken by @prathambenke
Iridescent Jack Dempsey taken by @prathambenke


Jack Dempseys are tough and hardy fish and are some of the less fussy eaters in the fish world. Their diet is omnivorous; they dine upon a multitude of different sources. In the wild, they eat crustaceans, other fish, insects, worms, and plant matter.

These fish will thrive if fed a carefully chosen and varied diet. If you do this, it has even been known to increase their lifespan. In general, Jack Dempsey Cichlids will eat all kinds of foods in the home aquarium.

When planning to keep them as pets, there are a few foods to consider.

Pellets And Flake Foods. These are great, as they have been designed uniquely for fish in mind. They don’t seem to mind this kind of food and will accept it happily. As always, make sure it’s designed for Cichlids and is high quality.

Meat, is good, but always in moderation, as too much of it could make them sick. They can eat it raw, make sure it’s cut into sizable chunks. Fish or meat from the animals humans eat is the best choice.

Live Foods, such as bloodworm, tubifex and brine shrimp should often be offered. They should be a staple in the diet of your fish.

Don’t Forget Plant Material! After all, they are omnivores, and the other part of their diet should be filled. Finely chopped, foods like blowball leaves, cabbage, and lettuce should be sufficient.

Other Options To Consider

Frozen Food. If you don’t have access to live foods, or they are out of your budget range, these are a good option. Frozen versions of the live feed mentioned above are good. Of course, these can be offered alongside the live alternative.

Milled Seafood. Another excellent choice. Prepare it by thawing; your fish are sure to appreciate it.

Things To Avoid

Warm-Blooded Meat isn’t good for them. By ‘warm-blooded,’ we mean meat such as beef and chicken. This is because the amounts and types of proteins in this meats aren’t good for them. They can’t digest it properly, so it can make them quite sick.

(FYI: Many people talk about offering beef heart to Jack Dempsey Cichlids often, but this isn’t a good idea. Beef heart is high in proteins, so should only be provided for a treat. Don’t make it regular!)

Overfeeding. Feed them once a day to avoid this problem.

Jack Dempsey Cichlid Taken By @monstertankfish - Everything you needed to know about Jack Dempsey Cichlids. Find out how to keep your Jack Dempsey Cichlids happy and healthy. | Contented Fish
Thanks to @monsterfishtank on Instagram For this Photo of a Colorful Jack Dempsey

Popular Types Of Jack Dempsey Cichlids

Though the Jack Dempsey Cichlid is one species, it has been in the Aquarium trade for a long time. Some breeders and other aquarists have developed different Jack Dempsey Cichlids. Ones that don’t have the usual coloration that the regular fish does.

They have been bred to have vibrant and wildly colorful, and they are quite popular to keep as pets.

Some of the colorations that are available in the market are Gold, Electric Blue, Pink. It’s unclear why the Pink fish is advertised as one. It carries traits and colorations from both of the former options.

The most commonly known one, (that you may have heard of), is called the Electric Blue Jack Dempsey Cichlid. It’s like the original fish. But it has a vibrant blue for its skin color, is smaller, and less aggressive.


The Jack Dempsey Cichlid. It has such a reputation, after all, it was named after a boxer. However, this seemingly rough and ready fish houses a secret.

Sure, it is aggressive.

However, there are the beautiful colors, ease of breeding and maintenance. It will keep this fish firmly within the choices of many fish-keepers to come.

If you found this helpful, then excellent! You can help other people find this resource by sharing it on social media, and telling your friends. If you have any tips, recommendations or suggestions that somehow weren’t mentioned in this list, please, by all means, share them in the comments. Thank you for reading.

Fish That Breathes Fire! Well, Not Really – Firemouth Cichlid (Thorichthys meeki) – Complete Species Guide

Hailing from Central America, these beauties are a staple in the aquarium trade. They have been known and loved by aquarists for many years. Well, it makes sense. Take a look at them, they might not be mind-bogglingly bright, but they are nicely colored.

Firemouth Cichlid

With that is the ease of keeping them! They are some of the best for beginners, and countless people have said how easy it is to keep the fish in a tank.

Of course, if you’ve read the title of this post, you know what we’re talking about. That’s right, Firemouth Cichlids.

If you’re thinking of having a Firemouth cichlid, (or a few) as a pet. Or, you’re looking for more information, and you’re curious, you’ve come to the right place! We have everything on the Firemouth right here, so read on.

Table Of Contents:

Firemouth Cichlid (Tank Boss)

Basic Facts

Name: Firemouth Cichlid

Scientific Name: Thorichthys meeki

Group: Freshwater Fish

Size Of The Fish: Medium-Large

Temperament: Semi-Aggresive/Territorial

Aquarium Size Required: Large

Where It Swims: Bottom-Middle

Care Difficulty Rating: Easy-Medium

Good Paired With: Cat Fish, Tetra Species, Other Firemouths


The Firemouth Cichlid, (Thorichthys meeki) is a tropical fish that comes from the family Cichlidae. It was first discovered in 1919, by a man named Walter Brind.

The scientific name of the Firemouth comes from the American ichthyologist Seth Eugene Meek. (Ichthyologist means someone who studies fish.) It was named in his honor.

The common name, Firemouth Cichlid, comes from two factors. One, the almost fiery red that is around their gills and mouths. Two, the display males put on during the breeding season. To look impressive, they flare out their gills, and it seems as if their mouth is on fire.

Their natural habitat is Central America. They inhabit the countries of Mexico, (the Yucatan Peninsula,) El Salvador, and Honduras. Firemouths also inhabit Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panama and Costa Rica. Although that is their natural habitat, they have been introduced by humans into many places. Hawaii, the US mainland, Colombia, and even Singapore!

They choose to live in ponds, rivers that don’t have fast currents, and canals with sandy and muddy bottoms. Within these areas, they live most of their lives in the middle and bottom of the water body.

Firemouth Cichlids taken by @tf_tropical_fish on Instagram
Firemouth Cichlids thanks to @tf_tropical_fish on Instagram


While Firemouth Cichlids aren’t some of the most vividly colored fish out there, they still have a unique coloration. It makes them highly sought after. Many aquarists say that they are magnificent fish, and a pleasure to keep.

Like many types of Cichlid species, they are sexually dimorphic. However, unlike some species, (say, Peacock Cichlids), the differences aren’t extreme. Unfortunately, because of this, it can be quite challenging to tell the sex of your fish.

Here, we’ve listed as many pointers as we could find to help you out.

(A Note: Don’t bother trying to figure out the sex our your firemouths when they are young. Juveniles, whether they are male or female, are almost impossible to tell apart. When they mature, it will become easier.)

Markings and Colors: As with many other Cichlids, the males are much brighter than the females and juveniles. They gain their coloring when they reach maturity. It becomes much more noticeable during the breeding season.

All Firemouths have orangish-red or red markings on their neck, abdomen and gill covers (opercles). However, the males’ markings are always brighter. (Many people say that males have more reddy colors, and females have more orange, but it can vary.)

Size and Shape: When it comes to shape, the differences between forms are quite subtle, but they are there. The males tend to be larger than females and have dorsal and anal fins that are more sharply pointed. The females also are plumper and fuller looking.

Behavior: In general, the males are more aggressive than the females. Though, sometimes a female can be quite protective of her eggs.

You may have heard that Firemouths flare their gills. This is true, and it can help to determine the sex of the individual. All year round, males flare their gills when they want to intimidate or are aggressive, females don’t usually.

Yet, in the breeding season, both sexes flare their gills to show how impressive they are.

(Even if after you’ve followed all the pointers listed above, and you still can’t tell, ask your local vet or expert. That should clear up the problem.)

On color, (for the juveniles) they have a light-gray to olive gray for most of their body, with a blueish tint. When they reach maturity, their skin becomes almost entirely violet. On their neck, abdomen and gill covers (opercles), they have orangish-red or red.

Firemouths have another marking that depends on the fish and environmental conditions. It’s the appearance of stripes and spots. Sometimes, they have broad, dark-colored lines that extend along the body. They might also have a black spot in the middle or a horizontal stripe.

Their opercles have one black spot on them, and most of the fins are light pink, with blueish flecks. About the eyes, they are usually a blue color, with black pupils.

In captivity, they grow larger than in the wild, the largest size for males being 6″ (15cm). Females are smaller. Sometimes, they live for about eight years. Usually, their lifespan is usually between 10-15 years.

Firemouth Cichlids Fish taken by @christhefisherman on Instagram
Firemouth Cichlids Fish thanks to @christhefisherman on Instagram


With Firemouth Cichlids, it’s natural that one of their primary goals in life is to reproduce. Like most, but not all fish, they lay eggs. Also, like Peacock and other cichlids, they are mouth breeders. Here is a description of how they breed.

In the wild, the breeding season centers around changes in the water temperature. When it becomes hotter in the warmer months, the water starts to change, become warmer. This fuels the beginning of the breeding.

There are changes in the behavior of both sexes, but the males are more noticeable. Their colors become more vibrant, and they get more patterns than they usually have. They also become much more aggressive. Because of this, they will fight with the other males in the tank to impress the females.

Over a few days, they will usually pick their mates, which they stay with for the rest of their life. Once all the matching has been decided, breeding follows soon after.

The female becomes fertile and begins looking for a place to put her eggs. It’s usually safe and secure, Firemouths lay their eggs on flat pieces of rock often. Once she is ready, she will begin laying the eggs, long rows of them. The male will follow behind, fertilizing all the eggs as he goes.

Firemouth Cichlid Thorichthys meeki

It continues until the last egg has been laid, and they’ve all been fertilized.

Then there is the question of the egg count. As with many fish, the number varies depending on how mature the female is, and the individual fish. However, the usual clutch size for a Firemouth is up to several hundred eggs.

Something that is unusual about the Firemout Cichlids, is it’s the female that does most of the egg looking after. She stays and tends to the eggs, while the male is on guard, protecting the territory. The eggs hatch after 3-4 days. After that, they begin caring for the fry.

Once the fry have hatched from their eggs, the parents move them to another location and stay there for a few days before the babies can swim. About a week after they hatch, they can swim.

The parents will continue to care for the fry, making sure they are fed, safe and protected. They do this for around six weeks, (quite a long time for fish) until the babies can take care of themselves. After this, the parents and fry leave each other and go their separate ways.

A Firemouth Cichlid Fish taken by @tf_tropical_fish on Instagram
A Firemouth Cichlid Fish thanks to @tf_tropical_fish on Instagram

As we have mentioned earlier, Firemouth Cichlids are some of the easiest of Cichlids to keep. Fortunately for fish enthusiasts, they are relatively easy to breed, too. Once you’ve familiarised yourself with their breeding processes, producing them should be a piece of cake.

Here, we’ve listed pointers, tips, and tricks to make the breeding process easy for the fish, (and you)!

When you want them to start breeding, it’s best to raise the temperature of the tank over the course of two days or so. The best temperature would be 82°F (28°C).

When they have paired off, or they are too aggressive to their tank mates. There’s an essential thing you need to do to make sure there aren’t too many problems. You should separate the couples from the other fish with a divider. Or put them in a separate breeding tank if you have one.

To prepare the tank for breeding, you should have appropriate places for them to have a spot to put their eggs. Suggested materials would be PVC pipes, upside-down flowerpots, and flat rocks.

When the fry have hatched, check up on them occasionally for the first week or so, but they don’t need feeding yet. After the 7th or 8th day, they gain the ability to swim, and this is when you should start feeding them.

They grow quite fast, so make sure you have enough room in the tank to accommodate them.

Recommended foods for the first three weeks are brine shrimp, crushed flake food, micro worms and other foods designed for fry. When they reach three weeks of age, you can introduce dried fish food. Also, when they mature, you can feed them whatever you feed your other Firemouths.

When you have the fry, it’s essential to change 10% of the water every day with aged water.

(A word of warning, sometimes, first-time parents have been known to eat their hatched young. Please don’t panic if this happens. It’s unfortunate, but they get the hang of parenting and stop eating the fry after the second or third time.)

Looking After Firemouth Cichlids

Despite its aggressiveness and unpredictable behavior towards other species. It’s a easy species to look after. In fact, the low level of maintenance required, and lack of particular water conditions make it a recommended fish for first-timers.

Firemouth Cichlids are part of a genus called cichlasoma, (which has now been divided into several genera). They are some of the most peaceful of that group. It’s best to keep them in a group of their species, or a couple if you know their sex.

(For more on how to keep Firemouths, and what species would make ideal tankmates. See the Suitable Tank Mates section.)

They are relatively large fish, and they tend to be aggressive, so they need lots of space. Fifty gallons (189 L) is a good starting point and makes for a perfect size for a couple. If you are thinking about keeping a group, 100 gallons is excellent, (if you can manage it).

Remember, they need lots of space, especially if housed with other species. Keep this in mind when choosing the size of your tank.

The layout of your tank must reflect the needs of the fish. There’s no point spending hours on beautifying your aquarium only to find the fish don’t do well in it! Here are a few tips and tricks.

Putting live plants in there is a good idea, as it can give fish some privacy, and something to hide behind. They should have large leaves. To stop them floating around, planted in pots, covered with stones.

If you can, secure them down, as Firemouth Cichlids have a habit of digging down into the substrate. That will stop them disturbing and moving the plants.

(However, in saying this, there is something to note. Despite what you may have heard about them digging furiously, this habit is quite moderate. They don’t spend their whole days digging.)

Another idea is putting rocks that jut in and out and arranging them in a way to make lots of nooks, crannies, and caves. These will be a place they can seek refuge, and hide away if they need to.

Doing this a good idea. Many fish-keepers say their Firemouths quite active, always doing something. Though, this depends on the fish, as some say their fish like to hide away most of the time. Regardless of this, all Firemouths Cichlids are diurnal, which means they are active during the day.

Group Of Firemouth Cichlids taken by @johancistrusGroup Of Firemouth Cichlids taken by @johancistrus
Group Of Firemouth Cichlids taken by @johancistrus

Conditions Of The Tank

Firemouth Cichlids live in many different countries and habitats across Central America. Over time, they have become some of the more adaptable fish. These fish are quite easy to look after, as they don’t need a complicated set-up.

Here are a few pointers, then we’ll list the recommended Temperature and PH And Hardness.

There’s something that is very important when it comes to keeping Firemouth Cichlids. Keeping the tank water clean and pure. You should filter it often, say, at least once a week.

Filtering it often keeps nitrite and ammonia out of the water. It’s is crucial to keep your fish healthy. With nitrate, however, it’s okay to have some in the water, but nothing over 20mg a liter. This is because fish are susceptible to harmful nitrogen compounds.

Having live plants in the aquarium and a good external filter helps maintain the water purity. Cichlids can be sensitive to changes in the pH, and pollutants. So it’s essential that you change 15-20% of the water weekly. It becomes even more critical when you have much fish in the aquarium.

Also, when you replace the water, you need to make sure you clean up all the decomposing organic matter. An excellent way to do this is with a gravel cleaner. If you make sure you keep this up, you can avoid most problems that arise with tanks that contain tropical fish.

It may come as a surprise, but the cause of most problems is because: you guessed it, decomposing organic matter!

When you clean the tank, you should remove most of the algae growth from the glass panes. However, leave a substantial amount of growth. You may not like it, but alga is an excellent source of food for the Firemouth.


They are a tropical fish, and the waters they live in, in the wild can be slightly cool to warm. But, in the home aquarium, it is best to keep your fish happy with a stable temperature.

75–86 °F (23–30 °C) is the recommended temperature range.

However, out of that, the best temperature for the fish would be between 76-78 °F (24-26 °C).

PH And Hardness

As we mentioned earlier, they are fairly low maintenance but require immaculate tank water. Here are the recommended levels for the pH and hardness.

pH Range: 6.5 – 8.0

Hardness Range: 8-15 dGH

Firemouth Cichlid taken by @christhefisherman on Instagram
Firemouth Cichlid Thanks to @christhefisherman on Instagram

Suitable Tank Mates

Now, as beautiful as Firemouths are, they are well-known for having an aggressive and tough temperament! Now, this isn’t in extremes, as much as Convict Cichlids, but they are still aggressive. They are quite territorial and will go lengths to protect what they believe is theirs.

Because of this, careful planning must go in if you wish to have a harmonious tank.

In general, having lots of tank mates for Firemouth Cichlids is not the way to go, for the reasons mentioned above. If they weren’t enough, they get very defensive during the breeding season. In some cases, they have been known to eat tinier fish! However, please, don’t panic.

Despite everything mentioned above, if you plan carefully, you can avoid most of these problems.

Step one would be having a big tank. Never have an aquarium that is ten gallons or less, it could be very problematic. 55 gallons would cut most problems. Anything bigger than that would effectively solve the problems.

Step two is to choose the right tank mates! Here are some recommended species.

Other Firemouth Cichlids are a good bet, as they are usually pretty comfortable with their species. However, if you are going to have more than one, make sure you get a group.

A definite no-no is having two males together, as it will not go down well. Two females aren’t such a good idea either. It’s best to have a mix of both sexes.

Gouramis and Mollies are a species that are a good idea to keep with them. Many species of Gouramis (except of course Siamese Fighting Fish,) are generally not aggressive. Mollies are excellent too. They are some of the most serene fish around, and will not cause any problems for Firemouth.

Make sure the Gouramis and Mollies you are planning on keeping are as big or larger than the Firemouth Cichlids. This will minimize most conflict.

Other ideas for potential tank mates would be Catfish and the Tetra group of fish.

All in all, you can keep Firemouths with other species, you have to be careful about which ones you choose. However, if you decide to keep them by themselves, that’s an excellent idea too.

Two Firemouth taken by @kevinmeeki on Instagram
Two Firemouth thanks to @kevinmeeki on Instagram


In the wild, Firemouths, like other Cichlids, have a varied diet. They are primarily carnivorous, but the truth is they are omnivores. Despite this, their diet consists mostly of meat. They feed upon all sorts of things, such as larvae, invertebrates, small fish, and worms. They also eat some algae.

When feeding them in the home aquarium, there are a few things your food must be. It must be high in protein, you must give them a varied diet, and you mustn’t overfeed them! Overfeeding can make them very sick, and it could even be fatal.

Another thing to remember is newly-bought fish are often timid and shy. They aren’t familiar with their new surroundings. At first, they may refuse to be fed, but if you feed them then leave, they might eat. (The timidness can last up to several months, so you have to be patient.)

Here are a few foods you should consider feeding your Firemouths.

Bloodworms and white worms are a good option for fulfilling the meaty need. As are brine shrimp and tubifex worms. (However, brine shrimp and blood worms are quite meaty. So, should only be given occasionally. Consider them as a treat food.)

Frozen Feed is good for Firemouth Cichlids too. Examples would include artificial food such as flakes and tablets, Cyclops and frozen brine shrimp.

Other Options To Consider

Vegetables are good too. Great options are spinach, blanched and finely chopped, and pieces of cucumber.

Leaving some of the growth of algae on your tank is a good idea, as they like to eat that in the wild. So, it would make sense if it’s a supplemental food in the aquarium for your Firemouth.


So, that’s it then. We spent hours, scouring the internet. We also researched everything there is to know about Firemouth Cichlids. They are some of the most popular cichlids in the aquarium trade, as they should. They’re an appealing fish, low-maintenance and perfect for a beginner just starting out.

Do you have a Firemouth cichlid, or are planning on getting one? We’d love to hear about it.

(If you’re looking for other types of popular cichlids, and ones that will brighten up your aquarium, Peacock, and Convict Cichlids are a good bet. 🙂 )

If you found this helpful, then excellent! You can help other people find this resource by sharing it on social media, and telling your friends. If you have any tips, recommendations or suggestions that somehow weren’t mentioned in this list, please, by all means, share them in the comments. Thank you for reading.

Easily The Most Stunning Cichlids – Peacock Cichlid (Aulonocara nyassae) – Complete Species Guide

Peacock Cichlids! Known widely all over the fish-keeping community as one of the most colorful cichlids, and freshwater fish. It could be not truer; peacock cichlids are very bright. They are covered in vibrant reds, blues, yellows, oranges, and even purples in some cases.

cichlid-fish-from-genus-aulonocara Peacock Cichlid

(FYI: Peacock Cichlids are not to be confused with Peacock Bass. They are two different species; their habitats are in two different parts of the world.)

Before, they were not a well-known species, and in turn, not very popular when it came to being kept as pets. However, now, all that has changed, and they have risen in popularity. Well, so they should.

There are many pointers to them making a good fish to keep. One, they are a large fish, but not hugely so. Two, as we mentioned earlier, they are very colorful, so are a pleasure to watch. Three, they are relatively easy to take care of and do not need that much maintenance.

If you’re thinking of having a peacock cichlid, (or a few) as a pet, looking for more information, or you’re curious, you’ve come to the right place! We have everything on the Peacock Cichlid right here, so read on.

Table Of Contents:

How To Guide: African Cichlid Peacock and Haplochromis Show Tank

Basic Facts

Name: Peacock Cichlid

Scientific Name: Aulonocara nyassae

Group: Freshwater Fish

Size Of The Fish: Medium

Temperament: Semi-Aggressive

Aquarium Size Required: Medium-Large

Where It Swims: On The Bottom

Care Difficulty Rating: Easy-Medium

Good Paired With: Other Small To Medium Community Fish, Other Peacock Cichlids


Amazing Multicolored Peacock Cichlid taken by @from860to215 on Instagram
Amazing Multicolored Peacock Cichlid thanks to @from860to215 on Instagram

The Peacock Cichlid, (Aulonocara nyassae) is one of the many African Cichlids. It comes from the family Cichlidae, which includes all known Cichlid species. Many types of Peacock Cichlid come from the Lake Malawi in Africa. The lake straddles the border of its namesake, Mozambique, and Tanzania. At an area of 29,600 km², it’s the ninth largest lake in the world.


If you are a fish keeper, you would know that Cichlids are some of the most bright and vibrant looking freshwater fish. Peacock Cichlids indeed live up to the expectations.

Peacock Cichlids are a sexually dimorphic species. This means the males and females are entirely different from each other.

As with many species, all across the animal kingdom, it can be difficult to determine the sex of the individual. Here are a few pointers to help you.

Markings and Colours: As with other fish, Males are much more colorful and vibrant than their counterparts. This is primarily in the breeding seasons. Another thing is that males sometimes have what’s called “egg spots,” on their anal fins. They are unusual, in the fact that they are unique to the tribe haplochromine.

According to Plos One, they seem to be used for showing the male is healthy and may make it easier for the fish to find a mate. In fact, they so important, that some fish will go to the point of targeting others who don’t have egg spots.

Size and Shape: Usually, the males are bigger than the females, sometimes up to an inch (2.5cm) longer. Another thing is that the anal, dorsal and caudal fins of the male fish may be longer.

Behavior: If you’re trying to work out the gender of your fish, closely study its behavior, sometimes it can be a dead giveaway. It becomes evident during the breeding season. Males become flamboyant and aggressive, in hopes of impressing the females. They also may become occupied with building a nest or cave. So, they have a suitable place for reproduction.

Peacock Cichlid Aulonocara nyassae

With the females, change in behavior is a bit more subtle. Two fish preparing to spawn will spend much time together. However, two or a group of females tend to ignore the other cichlids in the tank. Breeding Peacock Cichlid females often carry their eggs in their mouth. They do this for the sake of protecting their young.

(Even if after you’ve followed all the pointers listed above, and you still can’t tell, ask your local vet or expert. That should clear up the problem.)

Peacock Cichlids, when fully grown, reach lengths of 4-7 inches, (10-18cm). They are some of the larger cichlids that live in Lake Malawi.

On color, the Males excel in that category. Females and juveniles are drab in comparison. But, when the males mature, they transform, their colors becoming vibrant.

Their colors also become more pronounced during the breeding season. This is because, like with many other animals across the animal kingdom, vibrant colors are impressive. For the females, bright scales means the male is healthy and has good genes. This gives more chance of survival for her offspring.

Beatiful Peacock Cichlid taken by @aqua_naturalist on Instagram
Beatiful Peacock Cichlid thanks to @aqua_naturalist on Instagram



As we have mentioned earlier, it is relatively easy to tell the difference between a male and a female. Due to the bright coloration of the former. During most of the time they spend in the tank, males tend to lead solitary lifestyles. They also ignore the other fish. They are also territorial. But they aren’t overly aggressive like some of the other Lake Malawi Cichlids.

If you want to breed Peacock Cichlids at home, the first thing would be setting up a group of them at the beginning. For the safety of the fish, and to get the best outcomes, a ratio of one male to three-four females is a good idea. Fortunately, Peacock Cichlids are not too difficult to breed in the aquarium.

If you are planning on keeping different species together in the same aquarium, it helps if you choose species that look starkly different from each other. This helps minimize the risk of hybridization during the breading season.

Like all other species of Cichlids, they lay and hatch eggs. These fish are mouth breeders. So once the eggs are laid and fertilized, the female keeps them in her mouth to protect them as they grow.

They are incubated and develop in her mouth for two-three weeks.

If the female is a first-time mother, she will lay ten eggs, on average. However, if she’s a mature mother, who has given birth several times, she will lay around 30 eggs.

Remember, these numbers are a guide. The number of eggs a given female will produce depends on how much experience she has as a mother, and many other factors.

After the baby fish, (called fry), hatch, the mother will look after them for a week or so. After that time, they are strong enough to look after themselves.

Yellow Flavescent Peacock Cichlid taken by @central_texas_cichlids on Instagram
Yellow Flavescent Peacock Cichlid thanks to @central_texas_cichlids on Instagram


Looking After Peacock Cichlids

All the species of Cichlids that come from Lake Malawi are naturally aggressive. Often, when they are placed in an aquarium or similar confined space, there is usually an increase in aggressive behavior.

If you are planning to keep Peacock Cichlids, it’s essential to have a tank large enough to accommodate them. They also need places where they can seek refuge.

If you plan your tank carefully, you can avoid common problems that people who keep peacock cichlids face. These include bigger fish preying on the smaller and unnecessary clashes between fish. It even may prevent two different species breeding with each other. (This is known as hybridization.)

As we have mentioned earlier, the average size for Peacock Cichlids is 4-7” (10-18 cm). Because of that, it’s essential they have a large tank! The minimum size (water capacity) of the tank recommended for them is 50 gallons. If you can manage it, 100 gallons is a good idea. This size is excellent for a group of fish.

A pointer to remember when picking the size of your tank is 1/2 an inch of fish per gallon. As Peacock Cichlids swim in the open water, tall tanks are a good idea, as they offer more space.

Not only are they a species that swims in the open water, but they also cover an extensive range in the wild. Despite many males being solitary, they do form schools. They swim together, feeding on the bottom of the lake.

In the aquarium, the fish forming schools are essential for a harmonious existence for them. It will minimize conflict between the cichlids. As mentioned in the breeding section, there is usually one male to 3-4 females. Because of this, they are known as polygamous. Keeping within this ratio will also help the formation of schools.

Something to keep in mind is that Peacock Cichlids need lots of space to move around in. Their care and maintenance are like that of the Mbuna group.

Conditions Of The Tank

The Peacock Cichlids are endemic to Lake Malawi, which means this is the only place they can be found in the world. Because of this, they aren’t the most adaptable of fish. So if you wish to keep them, they require fixed water conditions and specific water chemistry.

Read on to find out how to help your Peacock Cichlids thrive.

PH And Hardness

In the natural conditions of Lake Malawi, the water absorbs bicarbonate and calcium from the bedrock on the bottom and the sides of the lake. The minerals are released into the water, making it quite hard, and giving it a neutral pH.

Being endemic to the lake, the Peacock Cichlid has specially adapted to the environment. In the home aquarium, the conditions must be particular for the fish. For the pH, it needs to be 7.5 to 8.5. This is the high range of pH for freshwater fish.

Make sure that the pH is the exact amount. Don’t make them any lower or higher. If you put the fish in an environment with a lower pH, it will stress them out, and it could contract diseases.

Vibrant Blue Peacock Cichlid taken by @billcamp11
Vibrant Blue Peacock Cichlid taken by @billcamp11


Lake Malawi is situated almost in the middle of the Tropic of Capricorn and the Equator. It has a tropical climate. The water is quite warm, so your aquarium needs to reflect that.

The recommended tank temperature for Peacock Cichlids is 74-80° Fahrenheit, (23-27° Celsius). Another important thing when it comes to temperature is maintaining it steadily. Sudden changes – even those in the recommended range – can make the fish uncomfortable.

A useful tool to maintain the temperature would be an aquarium heater.

Useful Tools

As Peacock Cichlids require special water conditions, it can be a bit of a pain to have to monitor the tank regularly. Well, you have to, to make sure the requirements haven’t changed!

However, the aquarium trade is well aware of this problem, and they have created a few handy tools to make tank maintenance easier.

Here are some of the best for Peacock Cichlids.

Rift Lake Salts

Rift Lake Salts are for creating, and maintaining ideal water chemistry for your fish. You can get them in most pet shops, and in shops online, where they are sometimes also known as African Cichlid Salt. They contain bicarbonate and calcium, which are the minerals that are most prominent in Lake Malawi.

When you dissolve them in the tank water, the Rift Lake Salts maintain the pH and increase the hardness of the water. This imitates the water conditions of where Peacock Cichlids come from.

If you choose to use this product, make sure you dissolve it in a bucket of water beforea adding it to the tank. It allows the pH and hardness to be put right before your fish are in the water.

Passive pH Control

The salt mix isn’t the only way you can maintain the water chemistry. There is a way you can keep the ph and hardness at the right levels. Also, you can have a lovely decoration for your aquarium at the same time.

Rocks such as tufa and substrates such as coral sand contain minerals that are calcium-rich. These substances slowly release bicarbonate and calcium into the water.

This is like the natural processes of the rocks in Lake Malawi, so it is an excellent way to kill two birds with one stone. (Decoration for your aquarium, and contented fish! 🙂 )

Peacock Cichlid swimming taken by @aqua_naturalist on Instagram
Peacock Cichlid swimming thanks to @aqua_naturalist on Instagram


Suitable Tank Mates

Many types of cichlids live in Lake Malawi, and compared to many of them, Peacock Cichlids are peaceful fish. As with other fish species, these fish are protective of their territory. This is mainly male peacock cichlids, but they aren’t known for their aggressiveness.

Because of this, peacock cichlids can live alongside other species.

Here are some ideas for Peacock Cichlids tank mates.

Suggested companions would include other cichlids, (preferably those that aren’t aggressive. As well as other species who’s temperament is community.

Other members of the tribe that Peacock Cichlids come from, (haplochromine), share a similar temperament. A good example would be Utaka Cichlids. They would also make an excellent companion for Peacock Cichlids.

A definite no-no when it comes to pairing them with other fish is with Zebra Cichlids. They can be quite aggressive, and putting them together would not go well. Other fish from the Mbuna genus isn’t a good idea either.

(For more on Zebra Cichlids, AKA Convict Cichlids, see here.)


In the wild, where they live in Lake Malawi, Peacock Cichlids are described as insectivores, so their diet mainly consists of insects. Unlike some of the other Lake Malawi Cichlids, whose diet consists mostly of vegetation. Peacock Cichlids are bigger and hunt in the open water, so this allows for a much more varied diet.

They also have a specific method of feeding. They are a benthic species. This means they feed and live in the lower or deeper areas of water bodies, sifting through the substrate on the bottom for food.

To prevent overfeeding, and for the sake of keeping them healthy. It is much better to feed Peacock Cichlids small amounts several, say, 2-3 times a day, rather than one big feed.

It is also essential to remove any uneaten food from the tank. By doing this, you prevent ammonia spikes and blockages in the filter. They could be a real pain if they were to happen!

When planning to keep them as pets, there are a few foods to consider.

Many people recommend these types of fish foods: wafers, granules and sinking pellets. However, there is the importance of giving them a varied diet. Feeding them specific types of fresh and frozen foods is a good idea.

As with any animal, you must be careful when it comes to feeding them foods that aren’t specific fish foods.

Here are a few pointers.

It is a good idea to feed them different types of vegetables, such as cucumber, broccoli, peas, and lettuce. Also, a good idea is Japanese seaweed or nori. Here are the methods of preparing them:

Cucumber: Cucumbers can be chopped into inch long chunks. Then, weigh them down with something heavy, so they sink to the bottom. This is an excellent idea for keeping your fish occupied, as they can slowly demolish the chunk.

Peas: This may be tedious, but de-shelling the peas is a good idea unless you are using baby peas. If you want to make them softer, boil them.

Washed, and finely chopping, any of the above foods is a good way to prepare them, as well as blending them and freezing them into small cubes.

Garlic is also another great option, believe it or not. Make sure you chop it as finely as you can and mix it with something else. Feeding them small amounts of garlic helps Peacock Cichlids with their health and immune system.

However, these must only be fed to your fish in moderation. As with any other food, for the sake of keeping your fish healthy and making sure they have a balanced and varied diet.

Other Options To Consider

Despite being insectivores, Peacock Cichlids will be content on a diet with meat in it. However, there are specific types of meat you could feed them. Good options include frozen and freeze-dried bloodworms, brine shrimp, and daphnia.

Things To Avoid

Other Types Of Meat: Don’t panic, it’s fine to feed your fish the meats recommended above. But, as with everything, always in moderation. Beef, chicken, lamb and other meats are a definite no-no. Peacock and other Lake Malawi Cichlids have digestive systems that aren’t suited to meat.

All in all, if you are concerned or want in-depth information about feeding your fish, asking your local vet is always a good idea.

Pretty Peacock Cichlids taken by @cerulean_aquatics
Pretty Peacock Cichlids taken by @cerulean_aquatics

Popular Types Of Peacock Cichlids

Peacock Cichlids is the name for the genus of fish called Aulonocara. It includes many species and sub-species. So there’s plenty of variety when it comes to choosing your Peacock Cichlids.

According to the website Fishbase, there are 22 recognized species of the genus Aulonocara. There is the possibility that more are waiting to be discovered. But, not all them have made it into a favorite pet. Although there are others that are available in the aquarium trade, not all 22 are at your fingertips.

Here is a list of the most popular types of Peacock Cichlids, and their scientific names. Also, any other names they might be known as, (if applicable.)

Night Aulonocara – Aulonocara hueseri (Midnight Peacock)

Sulfurhead peacock – Aulonocara maylandi (Sulfurhead Aulonocara)

Aulonocara Chizumulu – Aulonocara korneliae (Aulonocara Blue Gold | Blue Orchard Aulanocara)

Eureka Red Peacock – Aulonocara jacobfreibergi (Freiberg’s Peacock | Fairy Cichlid)

Blue Orchid – Aulonocara kandeense (Blue Orchid Aulonocara)

Nkhomo-Benga Peacock – Aulonocara baenschi

Emperor Cichlid – Aulonocara nyassae

Greenface Aulonocara – Aulonocara saulosi

Pale Usisya Aulonocara – Aulonocara steveni

Flavescent Peacock – Aulonocara stuartgranti

(FYI: The Emperor Cichlid mentioned above isn’t to be confused with the Giant Cichlid, (Boulengerochromis microlepis). It’s a species which comes from Lake Tanganyika in Africa. The Giant Cichlid is sometimes known as the Emperor Cichlid, which is why people confuse it.)


So, has your thirst for knowledge been quenched? Good! All in all, Peacock Cichlids make an excellent, low-maintenance pet. They are an absolute pleasure to look at. Some of the brightest and most colorful freshwater fish out there. They’re sure to bring some vibrancy to your aquarium.

If you found this helpful, then excellent! You can help other people find this resource by sharing it on social media, and telling your friends. If you have any tips, recommendations or suggestions that somehow weren’t mentioned in this list, please, by all means, share them in the comments. Thank you for reading.

The Top 100 Aquarium Blogs, Websites And Best FishKeeping Bloggers To Follow in 2020

A new post I am working on…

Thought I would make my notes public and create a handy list of all the fishkeeping sites and aquarium blogs I’ve found so far.

Have I missed any good ones?

Please send me a note here or leave a comment below. Thanks.

Contented Fish - Top 100 Aquariam Blogs Feature Image

Reef Central

Reef Central Logo

About: Reef Central is an aquarium and coral information site, where marine hobbyists from beginners to advanced can exchange their knowledge.

Reef Central

What We Love: Reef Central has an excellent fishkeeping community forum! You’re sure to find fellow fishkeeping hobbyists with interests in common.

They also have some calculators that are accurate and easy to use. Very useful for when you are aquascaping or planning a tank.

Unique Corals

Unique Corals Logo

About: Joseph Caparatta is the owner of UniqueCorals. He worked in the marine aquarium industry for over two decades. During his studies, he traveled, lectured, and learned as much as possible about fishkeeping.

Unique Corals

What We Love: Unique Corals has excellent, clear photos and endless advice on aquarium equipment.

They have a web series called Water Box Battle, where people compete to make the best aquascaping in a small tank. Go check it out!

Find Unique Corals On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

Bulk Reef Supply by Andrew Duneman and Ryan Batcheller

Andrew Duneman and Ryan Batcheller from Bulk Reef Supply

About: Bulk Reef Supply, founded in 2007 by two friends, Ryan Batcheller, and Andrew Duneman, spend their time and effort to give helpful aquarium equipment solutions and sales to fishkeepers.

Bulk Reef Supply

What We Love: Bulk Reef Supply has helpful tips and tricks for keeping your fish happy. They have an excellent youtube channel full of fishkeeping videos, plus much more!

Find Bulk Reef Supply On  Instagram | YouTube

JBJ Aquarium Products

JBJ Aquarium Products Logo

About: JBJ Aquariums is an online marine aquarium company. They sell almost everything you need to start a tank. Including user guides, a great support center, and lots more helpful features.

JBJ Aquarium Products

What We Love: The amount of photos and range of products JBJ Aquariums have is awe-inspiring! Their blog keeps you up to date with everything going on in the company, plus useful information.

Find JBJ Aquarium Products On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

Reef Bum by Keith Berkelhamer

Keith Berkelhamer from Reef Bum

About: Keith Berkelhamer founded ReefBum, and his goal is to help the average marine hobbyist create the perfect tank. Keith shares his knowledge through photos and aquarium broadcasts videos.

He hopes to inspire the world of marine hobbyists.

Reef Bum

What We Love: Reefbum often shares helpful and interesting articles on aquarium help. Keith also has a page including the different aquarium equipment he uses for his tanks.

Find Reef Bum On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Reef Builders by Ryan Gripp

Reef Builders Logo

About: Reef Builders, founded by Ryan Gripp in 2006, focuses on the marine industry of keeping saltwater tanks.

Reef Builders

What We Love: They have fascinating articles full of facts on types of marine life in different places. There are also a ton of videos, from tank showcases to everything you need to know about a species of animal.

Find Reef Builders On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube


Reefs Logo

About: is an online fish and coral forum including information on Reef Care for beginners and advanced aquarists, with reef equipment advice, DIY projects, and more!


What We Love: have an excellent fish forum and exciting marine news. This is a place where you can always learn something new!

An excellent magazine and an app for your phone are some of the many great features.

Find Reefs On Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | YouTube

Aqua Nerd

Aqua Nerd Logo

About: AquaNerd posts about ocean discoveries, equipment notices, a gallery full of all their favorite aquarium events, and more!

Aqua Nerd

What We Love: They have excellent posts on aquarium equipment info. Also quite a few hilarious aquarium memes! Well worth a look if you need a laugh. 🙂

Find Aqua Nerd On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Saltwater Aquarium Blog by Al Ulrich

Al Ulrich from Saltwater Aquarium Blog

About: Saltwater Aquarium Blog is an online guide to creating the perfect saltwater aquarium. They’ve got fact files on saltwater fish, tank guides/aquarium setup, and an aquarium book series.

Saltwater Aquarium Blog

What We Love: Plenty of helpful aquarium equipment reviews. Also lots of amusing articles about the author’s experiences as a fishkeeper.

Find Saltwater Aquarium Blog On Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | YouTube

Melevs Reef by Marc Levenson

Marc Levenson from Melevs Reef

About: Marc “Melev” Levenson founded Melev’s Reef and has been an aquarium hobbyist since 1998. He talks about his experiences on his blog.

He also loves Scuba diving and exploring natural coral reefs.

Melevs Reef

What We Love: Melev’s Reef is full of great articles, including equipment reviews, and info and facts on Mark’s tanks.

Find Melevs Reef On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Mad Hatters Reef by Jeff Hesketh

Jeff Hesketh from Mad Hatters Reef

About: Mad Hatter’s Reef was created by Jeff Hesketh, who aims to provide useful information about installing and maintaining saltwater aquariums.

Mad Hatters Reef

What We Love: Jeff has great facts on fish species, articles of his experiences, and a helpful guide for aquarium set up.

Find Mad Hatters Reef On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Reef-fin by Scott Fletcher

Scott Fletcher from Reef-in

About: Scott Fletcher is the creator of Reef-Fin and has a great passion for Reef and fish keeping. He aims to help and encourage others into the hobby and support them on their journey.


What We Love: This site has an excellent section for starting your first aquarium, including tank setup, tank maintenance, and a helpful beginner’s guide.

Find Reef-fin On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Saltwater Aquarium Advice by Andrej Brummer

Andrej Brummer from Saltwater Aquarium Advice

About: Andrej Brummer is a biological scientist who has a great interest in the world of marine animals and plants.

He grew up in New Zealand and Australia, and there learned a love for ocean conservation and aquarium keeping.

Saltwater Aquarium Advice

What We Love: Saltwater Aquarium Advice has vibrant, clear pictures, and lots of excellent aquarium advice, including maintaining your coral, disease solutions, and other helpful topics.

Find Saltwater Aquarium Advice On Facebook | Twitter

Saltwater Smarts by Chris Aldrich and Jeff Kurtz

Chris Aldrich and Jeff Kurtz from Saltwater Smarts

About: Saltwater Smarts was created by Jeff Kurtz and Chris Aldrich to help fellow hobbyists create a successful saltwater aquarium.

Saltwater Smarts

What We Love: This blog has a unique page about an aquarium show called “Salt Speak.” In each episode Chris Aldrich (Co-founder of Saltwater Smarts) invites a fellow hobbyist to chat about topics related to the aquarium hobby.

Find Saltwater Smarts On Facebook | Twitter | YouTube

Red Sea Fish

Red Sea Fish Logo

About: Red Sea is an online aquarium source full of reef solutions, including aquarium equipment info, reef care products, and setup guides.

Red Sea Fish

What We Love: This site has excellent “reef recipes”, guides to set up your aquarium. They’ve also got great information on aquarium products full of all the facts you need to know.

Find Red Sea Fish On Facebook | YouTube

CORAL Magazine

CORAL Magazine Logo

About: In 1999 German natural history publisher Matthias Schmidt suggested to marine aquarist and author Daniel Knop to join him on creating an aquarium magazine.

Their goal is to keep blogging on their online coral magazine and to give out useful aquarium advice.

CORAL Magazine

What We Love: Coral Magazine is an engaging digital publication full of issues on new aquarium equipment, aquarium news, and more exciting stories.

Find CORAL Magazine On Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

Reef Nation by Justin Hester

Reef Nation Logo

About: Justin Hester is the founder over at ReefNation. Justin grew up in the southern coasts of Long Island, in NY.

When he moved to the Midwest in the ’90s, that longing to smell salty air again was what guided to him to keep a saltwater coral tank and eventually start ReefNation.

Reef Nation

What We Love: ReefNation has excellent product reviews, a slick coral store, fish profiles, and loads more great articles.

Find Reef Nation On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

Freshwater Aquarium Blog by Cory McElroy

Cory McElroy from Freshwater Aquarium Blog

About: Aquarium Co-op has an extensive list of information on Reef keeping, including water chemistry, plant supplies, DIY, tank decor, product reviews, and more.

Freshwater Aquarium Blog

What We Love: This site has a vast range of helpful videos, including aquarium plant info, how to treat disease, fish recommendations, and other useful tips.

Find Freshwater Aquarium Blog On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Fishkeeping World

Fishkeeping World Logo

About: Fish Keeping World is an aquarium blog that can give you everything you need to know about freshwater fish keeping and aquarium maintenance.

This site’s pieces are in-depth and well written.

Fishkeeping World

What We Love: This site has excellent fish profiles including saltwater and freshwater, and fishkeeping guides full of all the facts you need to know about your new slippery little friend.

Find Fishkeeping World On Facebook

Aquariadise by Mari

Aquariadise Logo

About: Mari, a young woman from the Netherlands, has always been a keen aquarist. She set up her site to show Aquariadise focuses on freshwater fishkeeping, including aquarium set-up info, plant/fish guides, and more.


What We Love: Her site has a great design and an amusing logo. Aquariadise has excellent plant and fish care-sheets, including interesting facts and other helpful tips and tricks.

She also has great product reviews to help you choose the best equipment to buy.

Find Aquariadise On Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

That Fish Blog by Rick Amour

Rick Amour from That Fish Blog

About: That Fish Blog is full of aquarium advice, freshwater and saltwater tanks, aquarium FAQs and ponds and water gardens.

That Fish Blog

What We Love: This site has excellent guides to choosing aquarium equipment, freshwater/saltwater aquarium info, and great articles for pond-keeping.

Find That Fish Blog On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Aquarium Fish Blog by John

Aquarium Fish Blog Logo

About: Aquarium Fish Blog is a site all about aquarium care, plants, decor, and fish reviews. Rashed Ahmed is the writer at Aquarium Fish Blog and loves to share his tips and tricks and ideas.

Aquarium Fish Blog

What We Love: Aquarium Fish Blog has helpful fish reviews, aquascaping tanks, plant info, fish profiles, and a lot more useful articles.

Pet Guide

Pet Guide Logo

About: is a blog with information about cats, dogs, and fish, with tips and advice about all three.

With Pet Care information and pet forums, will help you keep the perfect pet!

Pet Guide

What We Love: PetGuide covers a range of topics, including great aquatic plant, freshwater/saltwater aquariums, invertebrates, coral info, and loads of aquarium product reviews.

Find Pet Guide On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

My Aquarium Club by Michael Mokotov

My Aquarium Club Logo

About: My Aquarium Club has fish keeping FAQs, information about maintaining freshwater and saltwater fish, tropical fish, amphibians and reptiles, and more.

My Aquarium Club

What We Love: This site has super helpful articles featuring everything to do with keeping an aquarium; fish advice, fish/plant profiles including all the facts, and loads of other topics.

Find My Aquarium Club On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Oregon Coast Aquarium

Oregon Coast Aquarium Logo

About: Oregon Coast Aquarium is a non-profit organization established in Newport, on the Oregon Coast.

With their mission to create unique and exciting experiences that unite you to the Oregon coast, they are a passionate team focused on marine conservation.

Oregon Coast Aquarium

What We Love: This site has exciting experiences you can go to, such as animal exhibits, beach clean up days, and loads more inspiring events.

Find Oregon Coast Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Centreville Aquarium by David

Centreville Aquarium

About: Centreville Aquarium was established on January 1, 2000, provide information on freshwater and saltwater, fish species, plants, and sharks, and also have FAQs and reviews.

Centreville Aquarium

What We Love: A highlight is their clever homemade GIFS of the fish in their aquarium. They have a monthly post called “Fish of the Month.”

Representing a new arrival in their stock, with plenty of information on the species.

Find Centreville Aquarium On Facebook

Aquarium Adviser

About: Aquarium Adviser is the marine aquarium hobbyist’s guide to the best products for fish, tanks, and equipment.

Aquarium Adviser

What We Love: Aquarium Adviser has great aquarium equipment reviews, including helpful guides, and info.

Aquarium Info

Aquarium Info Logo

About: Aquarium Info is an online guide to aquarium aquascaping, marine aquariums, fish information, and planted aquariums.

Aquarium Info

What We Love: This site has a handy “Beginners’ Guide,” including choosing the right fish for your tank, aquascaping basics, and a couple of DIY article guides.

Betta Fish Care

Betta Fish Care Logo

About: Nippy Fish is a guide to all things about caring for Betta Fish. They have sections on fish behavior, equipment, and information to help you care for sick Bettas.

Betta Fish Care

What We Love: This site has heaps of useful information about Betta fish. They’ve got great tips about dealing with diseases, breeding, and behavior, and great info on what is the “betta” equipment for your fish. 🙂

Discus Tanks by Casper

About: Discus Tanks

Discus Tanks

What We Love:

Guppy Aquarium

About: Guppy Aquarium is a blog all about Guppy and Livebearer fish. They have topics covering Basic Fish Care, tank set-up, breeding, and also an Aquarium Fish Glossary Terms.

Guppy Aquarium

What We Love: This site has excellent info on designing your guppy aquarium, useful breeding info and, and some helpful care guides.

The Fish Bowl Guide by Ronnel Caluag

The Fish Bowl Guide Logo

About: The Fish Bowl Guide is all about caring for fish in a fishbowl. They have solutions to fish diseases and Fish Care on feeding your fish and cleaning your fishbowl.

The Fish Bowl Guide

What We Love: This site has excellent diy guides to setting up your fishbowl, caring for your fish, getting rid of diseases, and other useful essential tips.

Goldfisho by Tim

Goldfisho Logo

About: Goldfisho writes about everything to do with goldfish. They have information on the goldfish diet, diseases, tank set-up, and other essential info.


What We Love: Goldfisho has an interesting article about the History of Goldfish, definitely worth a read!

Find Goldfisho On Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

Molly Fish

Molly Fish Logo

About: Molly Fish is an online Care Guide that has information on types of Molly fish, how to care for a pregnant Molly, fish diseases, and the best tank mates.

Molly Fish

What We Love: This site has lots of essential info of the different varieties of Molly fish, great when in need of researching the facts!

Tropical Fish Success by Kris

Tropical Fish Success Logo

About: Tropical Fish Success has sections for info on tropical fish, maintaining your aquarium water in check, tank types, various equipment, and a cichlid gallery.

Tropical Fish Success

What We Love: This site has a broad range of fish profiles, including lots of interesting facts.

Find Tropical Fish Success On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

The Cichlid Stage by Scott Wells

Scott Wells from The Cichlid Stage

About: Scott Wells is the founder of The Cichlid Stage and has been a marine aquarium hobbyist for nearly twenty years. With his preferred fish species being Cichlids, Scott is a freshwater aquarist.

The Cichlid Stage

What We Love: This site posts some fascinating articles featuring fellow fish lovers interviewed. Worth a read.

Find The Cichlid Stage On Twitter

Aquarium Kids by Evan Baldonado

Evan Baldonado from Aquarium Kids

About: Evan Baldonado is the founder of AquariumKids, is a Lincoln-Douglas debater, journalist, environmentalist, volunteer, science enthusiast, and coder.

Aquarium Kids

What We Love: AquariumKids gets kids involved with great activities about protecting the environment.

Find Aquarium Kids On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Big Als Pets

Big Als Pets Logo

About: Big Al’s Pets is a fish, dog, cat, reptile, and bird care site. They have tank equipment, aquarium decor, feeding equipment, food products, and also products for other animals.

Big Als Pets

What We Love: This site has an excellent section for saltwater/freshwater aquarium advice, also including pond maintenance articles.

Find Big Als Pets On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Tennessee Aquarium

Tennessee Aquarium Logo

About: Tennessee Aquarium is a marine aquarium blog that has Events and Programmes and 3D IMAX Virtual Reality Theatre.

Tennessee Aquarium

What We Love: They have taken on a fascinating project called Project Rivers to protect the aquatic animals and understand more about how the changing environment impacts them. Worth a read!

Find Tennessee Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

Fish Tank Club

Fish Tank Club Logo

About: Fish Tank ClubFish Tank Club is a marine aquarium blog that has pond, fish and tank guides, aquarium supplies and several helpful reviews.

Fish Tank Club

What We Love: Fish Tank Club has some helpful guides, great when you’re looking for some tips on picking equipment/aquarium supplies.

Find Fish Tank Club On Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | YouTube

Aquarists Online

Aquarists Online Logo

About: Aquarists Online is a saltwater aquarium guide. This site has categories including marine conservation, DIY projects, articles about coral reefs, aquarium equipment, and more.

Aquarists Online

What We Love: This site has an excellent category full of DIY tips and tricks.

Find Aquarists Online On Twitter

Rate My Fish Tank

Rate My Fish Tank

About: Rate My Fish Tank has sections on maintaining your saltwater or freshwater tank, ideal tank set-up, a reef photo gallery, and more.

Rate My Fish Tank

What We Love: Rate My Fish Tank has sections on maintaining your saltwater or freshwater tank, ideal tank set-up, a reef photo gallery, and more.

Practical Fishkeeping Magazine

Practical Fishkeeping Magazine Logo

About: This site has excellent saltwater/freshwater guides, including aquarium set-up, equipment/supply info, choosing tank decor, and more.

Practical Fishkeeping Magazine

What We Love: Practical fishkeeping is an online marine aquarium magazine, including the latest fishkeeping news, helpful tips on fish types, fish FAQs, aquarium equipment, and more.

Find Practical Fishkeeping Magazine On Facebook | Twitter

Tropical Fish Care Guides

Tropical Fish Care Guides Logo

About: This site has an excellent section for a fishkeeping Q&A, with helpful answers and advice.

Tropical Fish Care Guides

What We Love: Tropical Fish Care Guides cover articles on LED lighting tips, Betta Fish Care, aquarium filter advice, and tank set-up.

Find Tropical Fish Care Guides On Pinterest

Tropica Aquarium Plants

Tropica Aquarium Plants Logo

About: Tropica is an online plant care guide including sections for choosing the right plants for your aquarium, plant profiles and facts, an inspirational photo gallery, and more.

Tropica Aquarium Plants

What We Love: Tropica is a great online source if you’re looking for aquatic plant tips for your aquarium.

Find Tropica Aquarium Plants On Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

Home Aquaria

Home Aquarium Logo

About: Home Aquaria is an online magazine that has articles on freshwater and saltwater fish info, aquascaping tips, aquarium gear, and helpful equipment reviews.

Home Aquaria

What We Love: This site has excellent reviews, helpful when you’re looking for tips on choosing tanks, aquarium supplies, etcetera.

Find Home Aquaria On Facebook | TwitterPinterest | YouTube

Seriously Fish

Seriously Fish Logo

About: This site has fish profiles, an aquarium term glossary and articles on aquarium news.

Seriously Fish

What We Love: Seriously Fish has a heap of fish profiles, helpful when you’re looking for facts.

Find Seriously Fish On Facebook | Twitter | YouTube

Advice Cart

Advice Cart Logo

About: AdviceCart is full of pet advice, including fishtank set-ups, choosing the right aquarium equipment, and product reviews.

Advice Cart

What We Love: This site has excellent reviews for aquarium equipment, great when you’re having trouble finding the right tank equipment.

Find Advice Cart On Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Aquarium Base

Aquarium Base Logo

About: Aquarium Base has pieces on freshwater and saltwater aquarium advice, cures for fish diseases, aquarium plant set-up, and aquarium product reviews.

Aquarium Base

What We Love: This aquarium blog has a vast range of useful product reviews.

Find Aquarium Base On Facebook | Twitter

Fish Tank Setups by Jordan

Fish Tank Setups Logo

About: Fish Tank Set-ups has information on fish care, equipment reviews, and pond guides.

Fish Tank Setups

What We Love: This site has super helpful aquarium product reviews, including the pros and cons, and a load of info you need to know before you buy.

Find Fish Tank Setups On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Authority Aquarium by Chris

Authority Aquarium Logo

About: Authority Aquarium is a fishkeeping advice aquarium blog with articles covering freshwater and saltwater fish information, filter reviews, tank set-ups, fish diseases, and their cures.

Authority Aquarium

What We Love: Authority Aquarium has some excellent guides to setting up aquarium equipment, choosing the right tank, and other equipment reviews.

Find Authority Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

Fish Tank Adviser

About: Fish Tank Adviser is an aquarium blog with help on LED lighting, equipment, filter reviews, and an aquarium FAQ page.

Fish Tank Adviser

What We Love: This site has some great info on Led aquarium lighting, and also some useful reviews for tank filters.

The Aquarium Guide

The Aquarium Guide Logo

About: The Aquarium Guide focus on posts about aquascaping your freshwater aquarium.

The Aquarium Guide

What We Love: With helpful tips planted tanks, The Aquarium Blog also has aquarium product reviews.

Find The Aquarium Guide On  Twitter | Pinterest

Microcosm Aquarium Explorer

Microcosm Aquarium Explorer

About: Microcosm Aquarium Explorer is a global aquarium resource for people interested in fish species, aquatic plants, reef keeping, Eco-Travel, diving, and photography.

Microcosm Aquarium Explorer

What We Love: Great posts and a great resource on the great marine outdoors.

Aquarium Tidings by Matthew

Aquarium Tidings Logo

About: Aquarium Tidings is full of online information on everything aquariums.

Aquarium Tidings

What We Love: Excellent, well-written articles on tropical and freshwater fish, aquatic plant fact files, invertebrates, pond info, and aquarium news.

Find Aquarium Tidings On Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

Modest Fish by Chris

Modest Fish Logo

About: is full of care guides, tank advice, and aquarium equipment advice.

Modest Fish

What We Love: A great site to help you find the best ways to keep your fish happy and healthy.

Find Modest Fish On Facebook

Monterey Bay Aquarium

Monterey Bay Aquarium Logo

About: Monterey Aquarium, located in Monterey, US, has small online animal exhibits.

Monterey Bay Aquarium

What We Love: They have a lot of information, including fun facts, fish fact files and loads more to explore!

Find Monterey Bay Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Mystic Aquarium by Dr. Tracy Romano

Mystic Aquarium Logo

About: Over at Mystic Aquarium, you’ll find learning programs for all ages, animal experiences, marine conservation news, and lots more to find out!

Mystic Aquarium

What We Love: A great way to learn about the marine environment around you.

Find Mystic Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Aquarium Of The Pacific by Robin Riggs

About: Aquarium of the Pacific, located in the US, is full of fun new things for families and adults to learn and discover!

Aquarium Of The Pacific

What We Love: Including info on marine conservation, the latest exciting news articles, animal exhibits, and more.

Find Aquarium Pacific On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

Shedd Aquarium

Shedd Aquarium Logo

About: Shedd Aquarium was established in 1930, Chicago, the US They’ve got loads of fun experiences for all ages, including field trips, marine conservation lessons, and more!

Shedd Aquarium

What We Love: Interesting and interactive exhibits, they launch many conservation and research programs to protect and learn about sea life.

Find Shedd Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Belle Isle Conservancy by Sarah Earley

Belle Isle Conservancy Logo

About: Over at Belle Isle Conservancy, you’ll find a team of passionate people all focused on restoring, preserving, and protecting Belle Isle for all to enjoy.

Belle Isle Conservancy

What We Love: An excellent place to find information this beautiful island in Detroit, Michigan. If you’re living or visiting the area, there’s information on the fish there and how you can get involved.

Find Belle Isle Conservancy On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

Toledo Zoo and Aquarium by Anne Baker

Toledo Zoo and Aquarium Logo

About: Toledo Zoo & Aquarium is found in Toledo, in the US.

Toledo Zoo and Aquarium

What We Love: They have animal exhibits, conservation info, and experiences, including special events, programs, and more!

Find Toledo Zoo and Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

Clearwater Marine Aquarium by David Yates

Clearwater Marine Aquarium Logo

About: The team over at Clearwater Marine Aquarium are passionate about marine life rescue.

Clearwater Marine Aquarium

What We Love: A centre for caring for and conserving wildlife, they make it their duty to discover and protect creatures of our amazing oceans.

Find Clearwater Marine Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

South Carolina Aquarium by Kevin Mills

South Carolina Aquarium Logo

About: South Carolina is where you can plan your visit to explore the aquarium, learn about marine conservation, and more!

South Carolina Aquarium

What We Love: Situated on the coast on the most diverse and busy oceans surrounding the US. There’s plenty to learn about the residents of the sea.

Find South Carolina Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

New England Aquarium by Vikki Spruill

New England Aquarium Logo

About: Over at New England Aquarium, you can learn about aquatic animals on their blog.

New England Aquarium

What We Love: You can also explore their exhibits, and even volunteer at the aquarium!

Find New England Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

Omahas Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium by Dennis Pate

Omahas Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium Logo

About: This zoo and aquarium blog is where you can plan a visit to their incredible space.

Omahas Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium

What We Love: Learn about animals through exhibits and fun facts, and learn about conservation and the green side of things.

Find Omahas Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

The Maritime Aquarium by Dave Truedson

The Maritime Aquarium Logo

About: Maritime Aquarium has special events you can go to, exciting marine news, experiences everyone can have, and more!

The Maritime Aquarium

What We Love: They’re passionate and a site for many conservation programs. Many are open to the public, where you can discover and volunteer for many different projects.

Find Maritime Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Aquarium Of The Bay

Aquarium Of The Bay Logo

About: Plan a visit, explore animal exhibits, learn about conservation, there’s so much to do at Aquarium of the Bay.

Aquarium Of The Bay

What We Love: An excellent place, good to visit, both in their physical location and their website.

Find Aquarium Of The Bay On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

Georgia Aquarium by Bernard Marcus

Georgia Aquarium Logo

About: Georgia Aquarium is a marine research and conservation centre as well as an aquarium.

Georgia Aquarium

What We Love: Their site is full of animal fact files, programs for all ages, conservation and research info, and lots more.

Find Georgia Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

Seattle Aquarium by Bob Davidson

Seattle Aquarium Logo

About: Seattle Aquarium focuses on educating people about Marine Conservation.

Seattle Aquarium

What We Love: An excellent site, with sustainability, conservation and education at its core.

Find Seattle Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Aquarium Of Niagara

Aquarium Of Niagara Logo

About: Aquarium of Niagara’s goal is to broaden the public’s awareness of the natural marine ecosystems.

Aquarium Of Niagara

What We Love: A non-profit organization, they support conservation and wildlife centers all around the world with donations regularly.

Find Aquarium Of Niagara On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Vancouver Aquarium by Carl Lietze

Vancouver Aquarium Logo

About: Vancouver Aquarium’s goal is to protect the ocean by conservation, preserving marine animals, and more.

Vancouver Aquarium

What We Love: They’re an excellent place to learn about our wonderful oceans and waterways.

Find Vancouver Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

Newport Aquarium by Herschend Family Entertainment

Newport Aquarium Logo

About: Learn about animals, go touch a shark, there are so many fun things to do and learn at Newport Aquarium!

Newport Aquarium

What We Love: Aimed at kids, plenty of fun, engaging and interactive exhibits for them. A great educational day out for everyone.

Find Newport Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Oregon Coast Aquarium

Oregon Coast Aquarium Logo

About: New York Aquarium is focused on saving marine wildlife.

Oregon Coast Aquarium

What We Love: With animal exhibits, fact files and more, enjoy a visit to the New York Aquarium.

Find Oregon Coast Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

New York Aquarium by Mr. Dohlin

New York Aquarium Logo

About: Aquarium of the Bay is where you can check out animal fact files, learn about conservation, and even plan an event in a beautiful aquatic scene.

New York Aquarium

What We Love: Excellent and fascinating animal info and interactions.

Find New York Aquarium On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube


Aqueon Logo

About: Aqueon is full of helpful tips, aquarium equipment info, tank set-up advice, and lots more.


What We Love: They offer an excellent fishkeeping community and newsletter packed with tips, tricks and more, called Making Waves.

Find Aqueon On FacebookYouTube

Marine Depot

Marine Depot Logo

About: Marine Depot is an online aquarium store full of aquarium supplies, fish tanks, and much more marine equipment.

Marine Depot

What We Love: An excellent feature is their extensive collection of ‘reef calculators’. They are an excellent resource to help you create and plan your aquarium set-up.

Find Marine Depot On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube

That Pet Place by Rick Amour

That Pet Place Logo

About: That Fish Place/That Pet Place is an online store for pets.

That Pet Place

What We Love: They include everything you fish, dog, cat, bird, or reptile needs to live a happy, healthy life.

Find That Pet Place On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Blue Fish Aquarium by Ben Van Dinther

Blue Fish Aquarium Logo

About: Blue Fish Aquarium is a locally owned and operated independent aquarium supplier.

Blue Fish Aquarium

What We Love: A perfect place to kickstart your aquascaping journey or buy a new addition to your already existing tank.

Find Blue Fish Aquarium On FacebookInstagram | Pinterest

Aquarium Zen by Steve Waldron

Steve Waldron from Aquarium Zen

About: Aquarium Zen is your online guide to the perfect aquascaping techniques.

Aquarium Zen

What We Love: Focusing on a unique type of aquarium, a living aquarium, it’s a tank, a living ecosystem and a priceless piece of art. Very unique and beautiful.

Find Aquarium Zen On FacebookInstagram

Aquarium Depot by Scott Smith

Aquarium Depot Logo

About: If you’re looking for somewhere to make your pet feel more at home, Aquarium Depot is the right place for you.

Aquarium Depot

What We Love: They’ve got everything from reptile supplies, to saltwater/freshwater aquarium supplies.

Find Aquarium Depot On Facebook | Instagram

Biota Aquariums by Kevin Gaines

Biota Aquariums Logo

About: Biota Aquariums is an online aquarium store, including equipment, and the perfect tank for your home.

Biota Aquariums

What We Love: Excellent products, years of experience and quality high standards.

Find Biota Aquariums On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

Aquarium Adventure by Bill Wymard

Aquarium Adventure Logo

About: Aquarium Adventure is full of fish fact files, tank equipment on the store, and more.

Aquarium Adventure Home Page

What We Love: Easy to navigate and much information without being overwhelming.

Find Aquarium Adventure On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube

Congressional Aquarium

Congressional Aquarium Logo

About: Congressional Aquarium helps you on your journey of a fishkeeper.

Congressional Aquarium

What We Love: With info on saltwater/freshwater aquariums, they will help you create the perfect underwater world.

Find Congressional Aquarium On Facebook | Instagram


Marineland Logo

About: Marineland is an online aquarium store, for all your marine pets’ needs.


What We Love: Quality and high performing filtration systems is their speciality, worthy of the praise they’ve received.

Find Marineland On Facebook | YouTube

Aquarium City

The Aquarium City Logo

About: Aquarium City is an online fishkeeping resource.

Aquarium City

What We Love: All sorts of content, including freshwater/saltwater fish, reptile, and coral fact files, a customer gallery, and other aquarium equipment.

Find Aquarium City On Facebook

Winchester Aquarium and Pet Center

Winchester Aquarium and Pet Center Logo

About: Aquarium Pet Center is full of helpful info on how to help your pet live a happy, healthy life.

Winchester Aquarium and Pet Center

What We Love: They focus on all sorts of aquarium critters, not just fish. Great for if you’re looking to have more exciting or unusual dwellers in your tank.

Find Winchester Aquarium and Pet Center On Facebook


Tetra Logo

About: Tetra is an online petkeeping store for all your pets’ needs.


What We Love: Focusing primarily on fish and their wellbeing, excellent scholarly articles on everything you need to know on all types of fish.

Find Tetra On Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | YouTube

Pet Mountain by Gavin Mandelbaum

Pet Mountain Logo

About: Pet Mountain is chock-full of pet supplies, including products for fish, dogs, cats, birds, and more.

Pet Mountain

What We Love: A great place to buy food and aquascaping supplies for your aquarium set-up.

Find Pet Mountain On Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

The Best Aquarium Instagram Accounts

The Planted Aquarium | @the.planted.aquarium.official


Aquarium Hobby | @aquariumhobby


Nikolay Mazur |

Adam Paszczela | @adam_paszczela


Malawi Cichlids | @mdoka_white_lips_and_more


Marcin Wnuk |


Freshwater Aquatics | @freshwateraquatics


wottafish | @wottafish


Luca Galarraga | @luca_galarraga


NorthFin UK | @northfinuk



Oliver Knott | @ok_aqua



Aquascaper | @theaquascaper



Monster Fish Keeper | @xtrippyhippyx



Filipe Oliveira | @faaoaquascaping



rivers.2.reefs | @rivers.2.reefs



Wet Arms | @wet_arms



Rui Alves |


Aquarium Design Group | @aquariumdesigngroup



aquarium4u | @aquarium4u



Aquascaping Inspiration by George Farmer

Aquascaping Inspiration by George Farmer


Aquarium Co-Op by Cory McElroy

Aquarium Co-Op by Cory McElroy





Green Aqua by Viktor Lantos

Green Aqua by Viktor Lantos


Tank Tested by Alex Wenchel

Tank Tested by Alex Wenchel


Rachel O Leary by Rachel O Leary

Rachel O Leary by Rachel O Leary


Corvus Oscen by Corvus Oscen

Corvus Oscen by Corvus Oscen


pecktec by Sean Peck

pecktec by Sean Peck


Flip Aquatics by Robert Lupton

Flip Aquatics by Robert Lupton


Steenfott Aquatics by Bob Steenfott

Steenfott Aquatics by Bob Steenfott


ADU Aquascaping by BucePlant

ADU Aquascaping by BucePlant


Challenge The Wild by James Morelan

Challenge The Wild by James Morelan


Aarons Aquarium by Aaron

Aarons Aquarium by Aaron


The King of DIY by Joey Mullen

The King of DIY by Joey Mullen


Reef Builders by Ryan Gripp

Reef Builders by Ryan Gripp


BulkReefSupplyCom by Ryan Batcheller and Andrew Duneman

BulkReefSupplyCom by Ryan Batcheller and Andrew Duneman


Mr. Saltwater Tank TV by Mark

Mr. Saltwater Tank TV by Mark


Tidal Gardens by Than Thein

Tidal Garderns by Than Thein


lafishguy by Jim Stime

lafishguy by Jim Stime



Saltwater Aquarium Radio | Jeff Hesketh

Saltwater Aquarium Radio by Jeff Hesketh


Aquarium Hobbyist Podcast | Aqua Alex

Aquarium Hobbyist Podcast by Aqua Alex


Aquarium Podcast | Cory McElroy

Aquarium Podcast by Cory McElroy


Aquarium of the Pacific | Lauren Harper

Aquarium of the Pacific by Lauren Harper


Pet Life Radio | Mark Winter

Pet Life Radio by Mark Winter


American Reef | Jennifer Hunt

American Reef by Jennifer Hunt


Aquarist Podcast | Randy Reen

The Aquarist Podcast by Randy Reed