Cuban Cichlid

Central American Cichlid | Cuban Cichlid

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(Please note that the fish shown in the photo is only a representative of what an adult specimen would look like. The color may vary based on the age and sex of the fish you receive.)

Scientific Name: Nandopsis tetracanthus

Common Name: Cuban Cichlid

Adult Size: 10 inches

Life Expectancy: 9 - 12 years

Habitat: Central America

Minimum Tank Size: 100 gallons

Ideal Tank Conditions:

  • Temperature Range: 75 - 82°F
  • pH Range: 7.0 - 8.0
  • Water Hardness: 5 - 15

Temperament: Aggressive, even as juveniles. While personalities will vary between each specimen, it’s best to assume that they all will display aggressive personalities.

Diet & Nutrition: Omnivore; in the wild, they feed on a variety of small invertebrates, insects, and plant matter. In captivity, provide a balanced diet with high-quality pellets, flakes, and occasional live or frozen foods such as brine shrimp, bloodworms, and small invertebrates.

Breeding  & Spawning: Readily breed in captivity, however, the challenge comes with finding a mating pair. Since it’s difficult to determine the gender of these fish, raising a small group of them (typically around 6), and observing them for a potential pair-up is recommended. If a pairing occurs, remove the excess fish or place the pair into a breeding tank, which should be an established, well-filtered aquarium containing a small cave, and a flat surface or breeding cone. They will spawn monthly, and If successful the female will lay hundreds of eggs at a time. After about 3 days of being defended by their parents, the eggs will hatch into fry. Feed the fry small bits of baby brine shrimp, twice a day and perform 50% water changes once a week until they reach a juvenile size, about 4 inches in length.

Gender: The dorsal fin will appear much darker in females compared to males. However, it can be difficult to accurately determine the gender when a male is not present in the tank since females may change colors and take on male coloration, turning a lighter color.