Name: Ctenochromis horei
Origin: Lake Tanganyika
C. horei have a very unique cichlid shape and pattern. When they are juvenile they have prominent vertical black bars the entire length of their body. As mine matured, its bars disappeared entirely, only returning in times of stress. As adults they are silver with red spots. They retain complex black markings on their face, and will often display a yellowish hue under the black, rather than silver.
Four years ago I purchased a 2 cm C. horei for $10 at the LFS. He was placed in a 150 liter tank with other similarly sized cichlids for the first year and a half. Being the most flamboyant, he was constantly starting fights, even if he lost them. His loud and aggressive nature was kept in check by my Julidochromis marlieri and Neolamprologus tetracanthus, who were my dominant fish. He did however, from time to time manage to eliminate the occasional fish when the Julie and tetracanthus did not intervene. He strangely only killed Malawi fish (electric yellows were his favorite), but he also made short work of Pseudotropheus estherae albino, Melanochromis auratus, and Pseudotropheus demasoni. After I moved the Julie out to a smaller tank and the tetracanthus died during a heating disaster, the Horei became the dominant fish. He's spent the last two years in a 400 liter aquarium, with the likes of a leaf fish, OB peacock, 10 cm frontosa, johanni, Tropheus duboisi, and others. He is very preoccupied with the monos, who pay no attention to him. He seems to need even more space than my tank can provide though, because his territory includes the whole tank. I would say that if you plan on keeping C. horie in a tank with other cichlids, either provide fish similar to monos to preoccupy them or the largest tank you can afford. A very unique and beautiful fish, C. horie is equally as destructive. I find that this species is best when not the dominant fish, so keep it with something that will put it in its place, but not another terror. Hopefully my Frontosa will do this when he is all grown up. I did read that C. horei is a schooling fish, but the idea of more than one is just scary.
As for diet, anything goes. I've varied it often, but have never noticed my C. horei getting any more colorful with the addition of more meats, like shrimp or chopped raw fish. I'd say the heavier his diet, the more mellow he is. I often used this technique when the pleco or someone needed a reprieve from him to grow back fins, or what not. A good dose of cocktail shrimp and chopped fish would have the same effect as a thanksgiving turkey does on my uncle. I do have Java fern, and previously had bamboo in the tank, but he never even looked at them. Nor does he pick up small rocks and chew off the algae, like some of my other cichlids. I think it is safe to say that C. horei is a carnivorous species, so feed it meat-based foods.
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