Name: Pelvicachromis pulcher
Origin: West Africa
Kribensis is a dwarf cichlid from West African Deltas, living in slightly brackish waters. They will tolerate a pH of 6.5 to 7.5 and a temperature from 25 degrees to 29 degrees. Males are of a long oval shape with extended fins whilst females are rounder with shorter fins. The basic colour of these cichlids is ivory with a brown lateral band which runs horizontally - this is when they are in the petshops. But when in full colour, the colouring of these cichlids can be quite impressive. They will exhibit colours of intense red, purple, oranges and yellows if right water conditions are obtained. Kribensis are peaceful to other fish but sometimes they can be very aggressive during breeding times and to eachother. Kribensis are secret brooders - they spawn in caves and are easy to breed. They like driftwood, rocks and plants as their landscape - mix them with other peaceable fish, make sure the fish arén't too small or exceedingly aggressive. Kribensis are gorgeous and delightful little fish - just be sure to provide them with a decent aquarium. Keep them in groups so that they can pair off, if you do get a pair, remove the other Kribensis for pairs attack singular Kribensis.
I recently had to remove a few fish from a tank which includes a breeding pair of Kribs, as they were repeatedly beating on the other fish. It is instances like these when one clearly can understand why this Cichlid is so successful at keeping its brood alive. If only they would not take their babies for a swim so close to the filter...
There is nothing more beautiful than a mated pair of Kribs flashing cherry, purple, green and gold. Each individual has a different pattern of spots on caudal and dorsal fin. They are easy keepers in areas with hard water or well water, and will even spawn and raise babies in it.
I had a beautiful pair of Kribs that spawned unexpectedly in my 55-gallon rainbow tank. The female went missing for a couple of weeks after apparently laying her eggs; I wasn't aware that they had spawned and had just about given her up for dead when, to my delight, she reappeared, importantly herding along a clutch of new babies with the help of her mate. They were exceptionally good parents - so good that I regretfully returned them and their offspring to my local fish dealer after the male began clipping the tales off some of my prized dwarf rainbows that had ventured too close to his precious babies. As it turned out, happily, three of the babies eluded capture and are still thriving in my tank. Kribs are beautiful, easy to keep, and fascinating to watch, but be prepared to separate a breeding pair from your other fish, because they turn into little tigers when their fry begin to swim; the bigger and more active the youngsters get, the more determined the parents are to guard them!
A 100 liter tank should be large enough for a male and female krib to spawn and raise their fry in. The most dependable marking that distiguishes sex is the golden yellow stripe from the extended point of the tail fin to the top of the fin. This would be a male. When two males fight, they attempt to bite off this gold stripe and the loser generally has most of his removed. Before assuming a fish without the stripe is a female, look closely at the fin for signs of damage. Females have bright red bellies and the males' are faded by comparison, but this can vary with the fish rather than by sex, and also is affected by breeding readiness. Males of the same age are larger than females and their finnage is longer and more pointed, especially the tail and dorsal fins. Dots in the dorsal fin have nothing to do with sex. In some strains, both sexes have them, in other strains, neither.
My kribs are great, what a find! I love these little guys, they swim and play through out my Malawi Tank. They add so much contrast to my tank and they are never even threatened, although my Jack Dempsey almost died and I lost 2 oscars in that tank from my little killers. I love my little guys.