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Copadichromis borleyi
Borleyi Cichlid, Kandango

 Age of Aquariums > Freshwater Fish > Borleyi Cichlid - Copadichromis borleyi

Photos & Comments

borleyi1.jpg (20kb)
Copadichromis borleyi female
Photo Credit: Alexandra Ellwood

Name: Copadichromis borleyi
Origin: Lake Malawi (Africa)

Size Tank pH Temp
16 cm 150 L 8.1 27C


I have four of these very attractive fish, and three of the electric yellow labido. Water temp for the red fin should range between 25-27C. They are an agressive any other cichlid...but not to the point where isolation is necessary. In addition, this picture doesn't quite show the true beauty of this fish....purple and blue body w/ bright orange/red fins. They are entertaining because of their constant activity and little quarrels between each other.

Contributed by Benjamin Blomquist

These fish can vary in size: the male will grow about 30cm, the female will grow about 25cm. The female fish stays the same as the one in the photo above and the males get a totally red body with a bit of blue on the face, sort of like a red empress. I have 6 of these beautiful fish, 2 males and 4 females. These are all kept in my largest tank which is about 1.100 litres. I keep mine with all sorts of african cichlids like electric blues, yellows, livingstoni's and moori. Overall I think these fish are a great addition to any cichlid keeper's collection. If you can get a pair to spawn your tank will be filled with fry as they are very prolific.

Contributed by Alex K.

Most people think that all African cichlids like rocks. Copadochromis borleyi is a Utaka - an open water plankton eater in nature. They live near rocky reefs, but out in the open, so they don't appreciate aquariums that are full of rocks. C. borleyi make good tankmates for the Aulonocara Peacocks, as well as most of the smaller Haplochromines (Red Emperess, P.Electra, Electric Blue Hap, etc). But they don't mix well with most mbuna (rockdwellers), unless you give C. borleyi some open areas to swim. And being plankton eaters, they thrive on frozen/live brine shrimp, or similar foods, while most mbuna are more vegetarian in nature. The males become very beautiful, with a metallic blue face, and orange flanks. The pelvic fins also become exceptionally long in this species. They breed easily, and often.

Contributed by slindsey

I have one of these fish. He is in a 200 liter tank with about 17 other african cichlids. He is the biggest fish in the tank, but not the most aggressive. He tends to hang out at the top 1/3 of the tank more than the rest. He is always the first to come to the top for food, and eats the most. A beautiful fish that does not get picked on too much because of his size. However, he is not that aggressive.

Contributed by Louie C

I have five of these Red Finned Borleyi, 4 females and one male. I have had 2 of the females and the male for about 2 years and the other 2 females I obtained about a month ago, since the male was relentlesly chasing the original 2 females. These fish breed from time to time, in fact within 2 minutes after releasing the 2 new females the male and one of them spawned. The hard part to breeding these fish is to fatten them up for the spawn. My problem is I keep mine with a colony of duboisi's, and since the duboisi are prone to bloat from high protein food (shrimp, krill, ect...) I have to watch what I feed my Red Finned Borleyi females to fatten them up. My only word of caution is that the males can become so relentless that they can kill or severly injure the females. Even with 4 females to my one male he still harassed one of my females to the point where she lost her eye. Personally I now remove the male from time to time when he gets too agressive and place him in a separate 200 L tank to give the females time to recoup. I also move the rocks and caves around the tank so they can set up new territories and give the male a run for is money when he is reintroduced.

Contributed by Yves Audette

I bought 5 of these fish as fry and they ended up all male. I introduced 2 bigger females. I have had no problems with the fish, the main male rules the tank and no fish would dare to mate with his girls. If anything he protects the females and sorts out disagreements between the other males. The females do not get stressed at all. I have had these fish for under 2 years and had fry twice, the first batch only one survived (with no help), the second batch eight (with a bit of help), now both females are holding eggs. Very entertaining fish, always up to something and with real individual personalities. A must have as long as you know people that will take in the fry.

Contributed by Tim

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