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Cyclide fish melanochromis meingano (melanochromis maingano)

Deep in the African continent, almost at its very south is the freshwater lake of Malawi. Stretching for hundreds of kilometers, it is ranked 9th in the world in size and contains about 7% of all fresh water on earth.

A peculiar ecosystem of an isolated reservoir numbers dozens of species of living organisms not found anywhere else. Melanochromis meingano, a small fish of blue – one of them.

Melangochromis meingano, a small blue fish lives only in Lake Malawi, Africa.

Pseudotropheus johannii, or melanochromis maingano, has an elongated body, elongated and flat on the sides. The mouth is large, the teeth are sharp, close to each other. Fish reaches a length of 7.5 cm in the wild.

In the aquarium there are specimens of 9 cm and more. Fin on the back of a solid, with stripes of blue: one at the top, the other – at the base. Two more wide blue stripes go along the body from head to tail.

Light stripes alternate with dark.

The habitats of this fish are distinguished by the hardness of water with a large amount of salt. It feeds on melanochrome algae, eating them even from pitfalls and rocks due to the characteristics of the body.

Also, all phytoplankton in the habitat is eaten.

The flocks of these active bright fishes prefer the small, sun-warmed depths of the lake. Kept mostly near the shore.

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Melanochromis belongs to the group of African cichlids (ray-finned fish from the order perch-shaped). In the local dialect they are called mbuna, which means “fish swimming in stones.”

Another name for this fish is meingano. – given by the name of the area adjacent to the island of Likoma, where the main habitat of the species is located.

Both males and females of African cichlids are very picturesque, active and look spectacular in any home aquarium. But their content will require certain knowledge and experience, as well as necessary components.

Keeping African cichlids will require certain knowledge and experience, as well as the necessary components.

The tank should be at least one hundred liters and preferably long. The hardness of water is determined by the indicator of 7.7–8.6 ph, the temperature is 26 C with deviations of several degrees in one direction or another.

The indicator dGH (alkalinity) is 6−10 units.

The biotope and elements of artificial relief make up stones, snags, sandy soil and a minimum of plants.

Given the activity and pugnacity of meingochrome meingano, their maintenance with other types of aquarium fish is problematic. The best way is a specific aquarium where you need to create groups of one male and three or four females.

It should be borne in mind that two males will get along if the tank is spacious. Well, when in the aquarium for cichlids are stones: they provide shelter for fry and reduce the risk of conflict between individuals.

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Melanochromis meingano is omnivorous. In the diet can include almost all types of dry or frozen food and additives.

Food should alternate. It is unacceptable to use only one type of feed. To achieve a balanced diet should be used:

  • insect larvae;
  • bloodworm;
  • pipemaker;
  • daphnia;
  • vegetable flakes;
  • feed with high fiber content.

Vegetable organics should be two-thirds, animal – one-third. Feed should be two or three times a day, immediately removing food debris.

Tsikhlida meingano – not too fastidious fish. Once a week will be enough to change the composition of the water. Usually enough 30-40% fresh.

At the same time, we should not forget about cleaning the bottom from food residues and waste products.

The artificial aerator showed itself well. If it is used, the frequency of cleaning can be increased to 1 time in a few weeks.

Since the plants do not stay long in the aquarium with Malawian cyclides (the fish just eat them), the supply of water with oxygen is difficult.

The use of a small spray stone giving air bubbles is very helpful. It will be good if this function is performed by coral baby.

In addition to aeration, it stabilizes the alkaline balance. Some lovers recommend siphoning the ground with a funnel hose (a kind of underwater vacuum cleaner).

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