maintenance, care, compatibility
Blue Dolphin: content, compatibility, breeding, photo-video review
Order, family: cichlids (Cichlidae).
Comfortable water temperature for keeping Blue Dolphin:
Aggressiveness: moderately aggressive 50%.
Blue Dolphin compatibility: small and medium-sized cichlids, large barbs, soma.
Personal experience and useful tips: Beautiful fish. For a comfortable upkeep you need a large aquarium.
Compatibility with other species of fish is limited, fish of the Cichlov family (Mbuna), however, no matter how. But, at the same time, this is probably the most modest type of cichlids, the “Malawian spirit” in them is zero. To date, I have got a pair of these handsome men – they sit in a corner, shy away with sudden movements and sounds, they are falling from a slug of akvaraim into a dummy)))
In nature, it lives in shallow sandy areas of Lake Malawi in Africa. Due to the strong similarity of the shape of the head and mouth with a mammal, it got its name.
It was first introduced to Europe in 1968.
The aquarium fish of the blue dolphin has a tall, slightly elongated body, flattened at the sides. Large head, eyes large and mobile, lips thick. An adult male has a large fat growth on the forehead.
The back and anal fins are long, tail bilobed. Abdominal and pectoral fins – thin, short. It is possible to distinguish adults and juveniles by color.
Young individuals are painted in gray-blue color with a silvery shine, with dark transverse stripes on each side. In the center of the body and on the tail stem on a large dark spot. In adults, the color is velvety blue.
The dominant male in the excited state becomes dark blue. During spawning, his forehead turns yellow, and 5-7 dark blue transverse bands appear on the side. All fins are colored blue.
As a rule, the male is larger than the female. In nature, the blue dolphin can reach 25 cm.
Life expectancy up to 15 years.
The dolphin is blue territorial, shy and peaceful fish. But, males periodically argue among themselves for leadership, without causing serious damage to each other.
Dolphins are shy (even in the vicinity of African cichlids), therefore it is recommended to keep them in a species aquarium in the ratio of 1 male and 2 females or 2 males and 3 females. Keep in the middle and lower layers of water.
It is best to keep a blue dolphin in the presence of a spacious aquarium with a volume of 200-250 liters. with sandy soil, numerous shelters (crevices and grottoes of stones) and free swimming. If you put plants in an aquarium, then you need to take only hard-leaved with a good root system or in pots. Water parameters for the correct content of the blue dolphin: hardness 5 -20 °, pH 7.2-8.5, temperature 24 – 28 ° C.
A powerful filtration, aeration and weekly substitution of up to 30-50% of the volume of water is recommended. Sexual maturity of the blue dolphin reaches the age of 12-18 months with a length of 13 cm.
Reproduction and spawning is similar to the majority of Malawi cichlids and does not pose any particular problems.
Feeding aquarium fish must be correct: balanced, diverse. This fundamental rule is the key to successful keeping of any fish, be it guppies or astronotuses.
Article “How and how much to feed aquarium fish” talks in detail about this, it outlines the basic principles of the diet and feeding regime of fish.
In this article, we note the most important thing – feeding fish should not be monotonous; both dry and live food should be included in the diet. In addition, you need to take into account the gastronomic preferences of a particular fish and, depending on this, include in its diet ration either with the highest protein content or vice versa with vegetable ingredients.
Popular and popular feed for fish, of course, are dry food. For example, hourly and everywhere can be found on the aquarium shelves of food company “Tetra” – the leader of the Russian market, in fact, the range of feeds of this company is striking. In the “gastronomic arsenal” of Tetra are included as individual feeds for a certain type of fish: for goldfish, for cichlids, for loricarids, guppies, labyrinths, arovan, discus, etc.
Also, Tetra has developed specialized foods, for example, for enhancing color, fortified or for feeding fry. Detailed information on all Tetra feeds, you can find on the official website of the company – here.
It should be noted that when buying any dry food, you should pay attention to the date of its production and shelf life, try not to buy food by weight, and also keep the food in a closed state – this will help avoid the development of pathogenic flora in it.
The blue dolphin Cyrtocara moorii (formerly Haplochromis moorii) is an unusual aquarium cichlid originally from Lake Malawi in Africa. It is popular among fans of cichlids, primarily for coloring, as well as for the unusual body shape with a large fat cone.
At the same time, blue dolphins are quite rather big aquarium fish, and can reach a size of 25 cm or more. Sufficient peaceful, but males are aggressive towards each other, and it is better to keep them in a harem, from one male and three or four females.
Such a harem lives on its territory, which is carefully guarded only during spawning, at other times remaining more tolerant.
Keep blue dolphins is simple enough, provided that they live in a spacious aquarium, the water in it is stable and clean, and it is decorated correctly. It is best to design in the form of a biotope, with sand as a soil, a large number of stones and various shelters, and free space sufficient for swimming.