Name: Herotilapia multispinosa|
Origin: Panama, Nicaragua|
I have a pair of rainbow cichlids that were in my 320 litre community tank, but have just laid eggs in an upturned half coconut, so they have been moved in to a smaller 70 litre tank to raise their fry. They certainly make great parents. They are aggressive fish, but only out of protection of their young, they did guard their territory in the larger tank as well, but never causing any real damage to other tank mates. Although these fish are medium to hard water fish, they have bred with no problems in the soft water where I live, it's just a testament of how easy it is to breed these very interesting cichlids.
Very good beginner cichlid. Breeds very easily, laying a large number of eggs on a clean rock. The fry are guided into pits where the parents guard them. They are extremely good parents, and sooo cute! I keep having trouble sexing them, the only diffrence I find is size! A fairly peaceful cichlid, it should not be mixed with overly aggressive companions. I haven't have had complaints from my other fish of bullying. One thing I must point out - these fish grow fast, thought not too big! As with all cichlids, make sure you have space.
Very hardy fish. Easy to breed, colour changes to black when mating and breeding. Great for beginner.
As far as Rainbows not bullying other fish, I offer another point of view. I know of one male that attacked a Synodontis nigrita almost to the point of death. Cichlids are very difficult to generalize, they all have individual 'personalities'.
I have a pair of Rainbow Cichlids sharing a 150 L aquarium with a pair of Convict Cichlids and a Sailfin Plec and they all live peacefully together. I feed them flake food, freeze-dried tubifex worms and frozen bloodworms once a week. These fish are very interesting and I'd recommend them to anyone who wants to keep small Cichlids.
I have pair of rainbow cichlids in 260 litre tank with only a pair of thick-lipped gouramis for company. The male cichlid spends the WHOLE day furiously chasing the female. He only stops when the lights go out or some bloodworms appear. Occasionally he diverts from attacking the female rainbow to having a go at the gouramis. The female (which is slightly larger than the male) looks very battered. Her tail is constantly getting torn and infected. Occasionally there is something that might pass for courtship - a sort of fluttering action that lasts a few seconds - before the chase carries on.
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