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Parrot fish content

maintenance, care, compatibility

Pelvicahromis pulher (lat. Pelvicachromis pulcher) or as it is also called cichlid parrot, and most often aquarium parrot fish is an excellent choice, especially among those aquarists who want to try to contain cichlids in the aquarium.

In addition to their very bright colors, they also differ in interesting behavior. But the most important thing that attracts aquarists is small size, peaceful behavior.

They can be contained in small aquariums and at the same time quite unpretentious to the parameters of water and types of food.

The aquarium parrot fish is calm enough for a cichlid fish, which can be kept in a general aquarium without fear that it will kill someone. Thick-grown aquariums love kribensis, and although they also like to dig deeper in the ground, they don’t pull out and touch the plants. Like all cichlids, parrots love shelter, but also need an open spot for swimming, however, they mostly stay at the bottom.

It is especially funny to watch parents with a flock of fry, gray and imperceptible, they instantly obey any order of the parents and dissolve literally before your eyes.

Unpretentious and small fish that can be kept in a general aquarium with fish of equal size. It is undemanding in feeding and maintenance, and can be recommended to novice aquarists.

Before you get new inhabitants of the aquarium, you need to understand their types, types, characteristics of the content and other nuances. Certainly, the parrot is one of the best representatives of the water home world.

This is a unique pet with a bright color, lively character and very funny manners. It is noteworthy that for the breeding of the species, it took breeders several years and cross-breeding of fish from the order of South American type cichlids.

It was from them that the “sea elf” received the color brightness and the funny characteristic “beak.”

In the family of parrot fish, 10 genera and more than 100 species are distinguished. But only some of them are known and more common:

  • Red parrot The individual grows up to 25 cm, the color is predominantly red in combination with yellow, a distinctive feature is the beak, sometimes supplemented with sharp incisors and canines protruding to the outside. It is important that this fish changes its color several times as it matures. Natural loneliness in coral reefs does not affect good neighborly relations in the aquarium. By the way, it is the red parrot that is the most favorite inhabitant of beginning aquarists and the photos of fish can often be seen on sites. The pet’s nighttime rest is especially interesting – the fish at night creates itself a cocoon in the form of a cover made of mucus and prefers to sleep protected from all external influences.
  • Scar. Small representatives of the species, growing to 19 cm and having more than 50 species. The most famous are: dark, striped-bruised, Red Sea and guacamayia. The natural habitat is a coral reef, where fish feed on mollusks and some species of coral. But do not worry, aquarium parrots – Skara well belong to a variety of traditional food.
  • The green shish-thorn is an amazing representative of the fish family. To begin with, this “Petrovsky grenadier” grows to 100 cm or more, and the weight is also considerable – from 40 kg, such photos are often found on websites. But this all refers to the natural existence, aquarium representatives are much smaller, although here it will look like a “gulliver” among all other inhabitants. And do not forget that any quarrel of a green parrot with another pet can end in tears: using your forehead as a ram, the companion literally knocks the enemy “off his feet”, very skillfully attacking.

Of course, there is a parrot fish of other colors and colors: red, pearl, with a purple hue. Also there are representatives with various types of beaks.

And if you had the idea to start a couple of persons in your tank, you should think about the nature of other inhabitants, so as not to create unnecessary problems.

Immediately, we note that these scaly friends are distinguished by tranquility and peacefulness. But there are some points in the content of individuals necessary to create a normal environment for other pets.

  1. Nimble or calm fish that like to rake ground and disdain vegetation are the best friends of aquarium parrots.
  2. Angelfish – a problem may arise with them. A red parrot or another species mercilessly plucks algae where the scalar loves to hide. And after eating the twigs, the individual can pay attention to the neighbor herself, who is unlikely to enjoy the sea elf’s snooty character. Although in life there are examples of the normal coexistence of all types of fish, however, the aquarium should be at least 200 liters.
  3. Small fish – the subject of special “adoration.” The parrot fish will definitely try the little one on a tooth, without even noticing this fact. Therefore, if your friends are scaly friends less than 5 cm long, you do not need to tempt fate, get two aquariums.

Playful disposition, great mobility, a tendency to attack, intelligence and cunning – all this is aquarium parrot fish. Want to settle a couple at home, take care of a spacious aquarium, at least 180-200 liters. The natural conditions of pets are in the coral reefs, so the pump is an indispensable element of the artificial “lake”, without which your “sea elves” will not be able to eat and feel normal.

Optimum temperature + 22-26 C, hardness not more than 7.5 pH. A prerequisite is the saturation of water with oxygen. Constant aeration is necessary; parrot fish can only live in running water.

Replacing at least half the volume of the aquarium once a week is law. And cover the aquarium with a net, as from a small vessel your fish can easily jump out.

The maintenance of the fish does not require a special design of the aquarium, parrots are very unpretentious to the presence of special plants and other nuances. But the soil and small stones at the bottom should be, pets love poking around in their beaks, tearing bottom sediments.

It is also important to remember that a parrot fish, and especially a red parrot, is distinguished by an irrepressible love for building nests. Looking at the photo, you will see how the night cocoons look, which then surely will appear in your aquarium.

The red parrot is an enthusiastic small fish that has the strength to stay active and mobile throughout the day. Fish maintenance requires a spacious aquarium with free swimming space: at least 200 liters of cubic.

It is recommended to build a pump over, all cichl like undercurrent.

Proper care of an aquarium parrot implies maintaining the permissible parameters of the aquatic environment: temperatures of 23-26 degrees Celsius, pH 6.5-7.5 pH. Aquatic parrots prefer oxygenated water, for which quality aeration is assumed. Once a week you need to update half of the water tank, change some of the old water to fresh.

The red parrot is jumping enough, so that the reservoir should be covered with a lid so that the fish would not end up behind the “house”.

In order to care for the fish was useful for her, you should not plant many decorations in the aquarium. Many cichlids are indifferent to them, since they themselves are not averse to building something new in the form of a nest. The red parrot can coexist with peaceful large fish, as well as with some predators. Tsikhlovaya fish are not averse to eat small fish (neon, gracilis), so this hooking should be avoided.

The red parrot has a small mouth, and can accidentally swallow small aquatic pets.

It is recommended to keep with arvanas, labo, black knives, middle South American cichlids, medium and large catfish, haracin and large barbs. The parrot is a peaceful fish, so there will be no attack on the listed neighbors.

It is not found in the wild, it was bred artificially in 1986 by gradually crossing several species of South American cichlids.


We note right away: they do not belong to the category of complex, and even a novice aquarium novice can successfully keep parrots. Of course, subject to certain rules.

Regarding the size of the aquarium, questions usually do not arise, since these ornamental fish rarely grow in captivity over 5 cm. For example, for a pair of adult cribensis a volume of not more than 40 liters is sufficient.

The optimal parameters of the aquatic environment are quite common for a tropical aquarium:

  • temperature ranging from 23 to 28 degrees above zero;
  • pH balance in the neutral zone (6.5–7.5 units);
  • water hardness not higher than 15 °.

As in many other cases, you need to especially monitor the purity of the water and carry out its weekly changes in the amount of at least 1/5 of the total.

Water filtration should be sufficiently effective, and some experts recommend using a peat filter element as well.

In captivity, fish live in the lower and middle layers of the aquarium. As the soil is better to use small river pebbles. Gravel can also be poured, but it should be run-in, as fish have a habit of digging, especially during preparation for spawning.

However, the roots of aquatic vegetation do not cause damage to small fish.

It is necessary to equip several shelters: grottoes, caves or simple stone hills, and clay pots lying on its side are for parrots an almost ideal place for laying eggs.

Strong lighting is not required. It is noted that the fish are very nervous from flashes of bright light.

At this time, these cute creatures from the family of cichlids are the favorites of many aquarists. Feathered parrot, this fish resembles with its amazing bright color.

The most common are red parrots, Roloff parrots, netted parrots, yellow-bellied pelmatochromis. By the way, in the wild nature of crane fish, parrots with a hump do not exist – it is an artificial product of hybridization.

Wider this topic will not be able to illuminate, because the manufacturers carefully protect the secrets of the appearance of their pets. Although this parrot fish mates and spawns, it almost never gives full offspring, being sterile.

These creatures love to frolic and the size of their home should not be less than 200 liters. Some of them may try to jump out, so cover the container with a lid.

Wild cichlids live in running water, so the pump in the aquarium is required. The alkalinity of the liquid should be between 6.5 and 7.5 pH, and its temperature should be close to 22-26 °.

It is necessary to arrange a filtration system and replace up to 30% of water a couple of times a week.

The soil in such an aquarium consists of pebbles of small and medium fraction. Parrots adore snags, caves and algae.

They like to choose these secluded places for spawning. Parrot aquarium fish can not get along with everyone, they are best compatible with the inhabitants of the upper layers of water. They themselves float down and in the middle part of the aquarium.

It must be remembered that cichlids are able to swallow small fish. The best neighbors for them are Labo, arovan, soma, haracins, apteronotus (black knife).

Keeping and care of a parrot fish is not a difficult task. They eat both live food and non-living food. You can use flaky products and tablets that settle to the bottom.

Live food is fish, shrimp or worms that can diversify a good diet. If you want to have beautiful bright color parrots, then buy food that is saturated with carotene.

Pelvikahromis, Pelmatohromis or Parrot Fish

Order, family: tsikhlovye.

Comfortable water temperature: 24-26 ° C

Ph: 6.5-7.5.

Aggressiveness: not aggressive 40%.

Compatibility of parrot fish: with small cichlids, gourami.


Pelvicahromis is a small cichlid whose birthplace is West Africa. The size of the fish in the aquarium reaches 5-7 cm.

The fish got its name because of the similarity with the parrot bird. Painted fish is very beautiful.

The male has a brownish back, the sides are bluish in color with an ebb, the lower abdomen is reddish (especially in females). The female is fuller than the male.

The fish is peace-loving, it can be contained with all species of similar size and temperament (small cichlids, gourah, I got along with thorns).

Aquarium for “parrots” should be a volume of at least 50 liters. Small fishes need shelters: grottoes, snags, caves and in dense thickets of plants.

Comfortable parameters of water: hardness 6-15 °, pH 6.5-7.5, 24-26 ° C. Aeration and filtration are required, recommended weekly change one-tenth of the volume of water.

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.

Video with a parrot fish

Aquarium parrot fish “sailed” to us from the reservoirs of West Africa. The bright colors (which can vary) and the unusual (curved down) shape of the head really remind of the well-known birds.

The full name of the parrots is Pelvicachromis Pulcher or “pelvicahromis”.

The body of aquarium parrot fish is elongated, with the curvature of the back more than the abdomen. Males have a reddish stain on the abdomen.

In females it is bright crimson, although in general the female is less variegated than the male. It also has a more rounded body and smaller size.

Parrots in an aquarium, of course, do not reach the same size as in nature. In captivity, males grow to a length of 7 cm, and females – up to 5 cm.

They live up to about ten years.

For the first time, this magnificent fish appeared in Europe in 1951 and, thanks to its unpretentiousness, quickly became widespread. The peak of their popularity in our country came in the 80-90 years. Yellow-brown and red individuals are most common.

Also known albino form of aquarium parrot fish.

If you launch an adult in a new aquarium, it is likely that it will hide in a shelter for two or three weeks and will hardly be visible. However, after a period of adaptation, it will feel quite comfortable, as it is excellent in other types of fish.

Also, parrots are absolutely indifferent to plants, which allows you to create beautiful compositions in aquariums.

It is very interesting to observe the behavior of these fish precisely because they are actively moving and at the same time beautifully shimmering. Especially well this magnificence is seen against the background of green plants.

A very interesting feature of the behavior of parrots in an aquarium is that, for all their peace-loving nature, they do not like their fellows, with whom they have not grown together. Here it can comes to bloody fights.

That is why it is better to immediately acquire 4-6 fry, which are further divided among themselves into pairs.

Much to the relief of many, parrots are absolutely not demanding to care and eat almost everything, even black bread. The main requirement for their maintenance is a large enough aquarium.

It should be a length of at least 70 cm and a volume of 20 – 40 liters for each pair.

Approximately 15% of the water in the aquarium should be updated weekly, otherwise the aquarium parrot fish will become lethargic and dull. The temperature is sufficient to maintain at about 25 degrees.

Peat filtration is very good.

The “landscape” of the aquarium should be sufficiently saturated with various plants and shards that will serve as shelters for parrots in the aquarium. This may be a coconut shell, old pots, built independently of stones or purchased special caves and grottoes for aquariums.

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