Name: Parachromis dovii
Origin: Central America
One of the true Guapotes, this fish also is from Nicaragua and Costa Rica. An enormous predator specialized to feed on other cichlids, grows to about 75 cm and is hands down the ruling king of the cichlids. Guy Jordan's Pablo (above) was known through out the world for its intelligence and fearless nature. Some specimens can be quite shy and retiring around people. While others are extremely boisterous. With a combination of size, speed, intelligence and heavy duty dentition, all have the capability to destroy any other fish they are kept with.
I love this species! They are huge predators that tend to rule their tanks. Males are larger than females and develop 14 thin broken lines along their sides and are more colorful than females, developing a beautiful bluish green cast. They create a lot of waste and need a lot of room, so a large tank with frequent water changes is a must. They can be kept with equally sized Citrinellums, Labiatums, Buttikoferis, Umbriferums, Haitensis, Festaes, Managuense, Crenchilas, Trimaculatum, Channas, and predatory catfish like red tails and shovelnoses. Large cichlids like petunias and Cichla ocellaris do not have the jaw strength and dentition to ward off an aggressive Dovii, and should be kept separately. Anything else is taking a risk, and even some of these robust fish might feel the wrath of an irate Dovii tired of sharing any territory. I do find that, despite their huge full grown size, they donít grow as fast as most of the fish mentioned above, so you might want to take this into account if setting up a large community tank. I can say without hesitation that I will never in my life be without a male dovii as a pet. Owning one will bring you to the same conclusion, as it is a true personality fish that grows to know its owner.
I own a 1300 liter tank. I have raised 6-7 Dovii, both male and female, over the past 12 years. From my personal experiences, I'd have to say that the Dovii (both male and female) has to be one of the most ferocious cichlids around. I have read most of these posts and have to say my experience disagrees with most of what has been written. I CANNOT keep this fish with ANY other cichlid. Red Devil, Jag, or any of the other bad cichlids do not stand a chance against a decent 30 cm Dovii (male or female). And they will eat flakes or pellets up to about 15 cm. Overall, if you have a big enough tank (at least 600 L) and want a truly great fish, try on a Dovii!
A true monster of all cichlids. One of the few guapotes that has developed a taste for smaller cichlid species and any other spiny-rayed fishes that can fit into its mouth. The true king.
I think there is a lot of romantic exaggerating about the carnivory of this fish. Here in Costa Rica we are working on the commercial growout of the Dovis for the human table. They eat very well trout pellets and that's how we raise them. The males attain about 450 g in one year. As predators, Dovis predate more on small fish, they are not able to catch fish almost as big as themselves, like the P. managuense does. They are also much less aggressive than the Managuense and this is a plus for commercial growing.
I have had a Dovii for about 7 years now. When I got him he was about 5 cm and it was hard to tell if it was a male or female. As he grew to about 8 cm his color began to change and I knew he was male. At 13 cm his canine teeth began to show. Also at this size he began to dominate my 500 liter tank. He killed a mota, and losellei, but did not bother the pleco or my two synos. The older this fish got, the more aggressive he became. He is like a watch dog. When people who he is not familar with come over, he tries to attack them through the glass, but he has never tried to attack me. Right now he is about 65 cm and still with the three catfish. He eats pellets, krill, whole shrimp, clam, beef heart. I have never given him feeders. He is the most beautiful fish I have ever seen, with his voilet hues on his fins. His teeth are about 6 mm long, making him look very mean. I would recommend this fish to anyone to large tank owners who want a true show and pet fish.