Dwarf Cichlids

A basic guide to keeping Dwarf Cichlids.

Common names

•    Cockatoo Cichlid
•    Rams
•    Bolivian Rams
•    Kribensis

Geographical origin

South America (many from Brazil), Central and West Africa

Aquarium condition requirements for your Dwarf Cichlids

Minimum aquarium size - one pair of Apistogramma will be fine in a 450mm x 250mm x 250mm (18 x 10 x 10) aquarium, particularly if you are attempting to breed them. A 900mm x 380mm x 300mm (36 x 15 x 12) tank will hold several pairs of Dwarf Cichlids.

Temperature - Around 23o/28oC 73o/82oF, there is some fluctuation in nature.

Water parameters - ideally Dwarf Cichlids prefer soft acid water but over a period of time, can be changed over to neutral hard water. Water should be filtered. Small weekly water changes.

Habitat - Fine gravel/coarse sand. Rock-work to provide hiding places. Plants:may re-arrange the tank to suit themselves, in which case, the plants will be uprooted. Use plants attached to rock-work.

Dwarf Cichlids’ behaviour with other fish

Providing they have enough tank space to set up their own territory, Dwarf Cichlids will live quite happily with one another.

Dwarf Cichlid’s diet

Prefer live or frozen foods. Daphnia, Mosquito larvae are readily accepted. Some Dwarf Cichlids may accept dried foods.

Dwarf Cichlid’s Health

Dwarf Cichlids may develop problems with White Spot. This can be treated with a proprietary compound.

Habitat - freshwater tropical aquarium

Sociability - quite good if there is enough space

Care - relatively easy though they can be prone to white spot

The Pet Owners Association are grateful to the Federation of British Aquatic Societies for the above information and image.