วันเสาร์ที่ 23 มีนาคม พ.ศ. 2556

Fish Data : Malawi Cichlid




  In the wild, Malawi Cichlids live in water temperatures of around 24-26°C or 76-79°F. An attempt should be made to keep the aquarium’s water temperature around these levels. Lake Malawi cichlids do not stand high temperatures very well; an effort should be made to locate the aquarium away from any sunny windows/space heaters, which could cause the water to overheat. Generally speaking, the higher the temperature of the water, the higher will be the metabolism of the fish, hence more food should be provided to maintain their activity level and ensure proper health. Even if you live in warm climates, it is recommended you use an aquarium heater in your home aquarium as this helps prevent any fluctuations in water temperature which can lead to stress in the fish.

    Filtration of the water is as with any fish, there should be enough filters to provide both ample biological and mechanical filtration but also to create surface agitation to maintain gas exchange (O2 in and CO2 out). Malawi cichlids can be messy fish and overcrowding is sometimes necessary so over-filtering a tank is usually a good idea. The variety of filters available is great, however the most popular tend to be HOBs (hang on backs) and canister filters. UGFs (Under Gravel Filters) should be avoided as most Malawi Cichlids are diggers and will most likely expose the UGF plate therefore compromising its filtration efficiency. For much larger tanks a sump may be an attractive option however that is for the owner to decide.

    In the home aquarium, every attempt should be made to replicate these conditions as much as possible. However before deciding on decor, a little research on the species to be kept may be necessary. In general, there are two groups of cichlids in lake Malawi. The mbuna, or rock dwellers, spend most of their time in the rocky habitats and therefore should have a tank that is mostly filled with rock. On the other hand, the non-mbuna, often referred to as the Haps and Peacocks, typically live in the intermediate to sandy habitats and therefore require much less rock in the home aquarium. It is generally not a good idea to mix these two fish together not only because of the different tank set-up requirements, but also because of diet and aggression. Keeping both groups can prove challenging to the owner and often result in unnecessary deaths.


    Feeding African Cichlids the right type of food is very important. Due to their extremely long intestinal tracts, it takes a long time for them to digest food. Once you have identified the four different dietary habits of African Cichlids, and know which species you maintain, you can purchase the correct food. Inappropriate foods will rot in their stomachs causing bloating, sickness and sometimes death. For this reason, foods with a large proportion of spirulina and vegetables are best. Frozen bloodworms and brine shrimp are also good for most species, but meats and live blackworms are not recommended. Researching specific foods for specific species is essential.



     Most Malawi Cichlids are about 4" in length, but a few species reach up to lengths of 12" as well. It is estimated that there are about 500 species of cichlids in Lake Malawi


Credits :

http://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/lake_malawi_setup.php

http://cichlid.infocrux.com/Malawi-Cichlid.html



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