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Cichlasoma citrinellum x Cichlasoma synspilum
Blood Parrot Cichlid

 Age of Aquariums > Freshwater Fish > Blood Parrot Cichlid

Photos & Comments

bloodparrot10.jpg (25kb)
Photo Credit: Sameer Khole

YIPPE - others who first, know of Blood Parrots, but also like them (well, some of you do, anyway!). Until this site, I, too, have had trouble locating information on this full-of-personality fish. Though I realize that they were originally cross bred and disagree with the principle, I certainly can't hold it against THEM (neither should anyone else!). I have 9 Blood Parrots, of all sizes and in varying colors with distinct "faces" and personalities. My largest, ("Peaches") who I've had for years now, is approx. 7" and is a very pale orange, while one of my younger, ("Junior") now about 1 year and approx. 3", has never changed color and is maintaining a deep dark grey color and is quite unique. I have raised most of them since they were the size of a quarter and have quite fallen in love with each one of them. They are not only beautiful (yes, beautiful!), but they are full of personality as well. They are very pleasant tank mates (75 gal.) and seldom display any aggression toward others. I have a heavily planted tank and went through a trial and error with various plants until we were all satisfied. The worst thing that they do is the occassional moving of gravel, but even that is entertaining to watch! They are, to me, the perfect fish! I wish my tank was larger so I could have more! For those of you with Parrots, be sure to provide them "hang out" places. I have inverted clay pots with a door cut out which they enjoy and have also created a slate "bridge" which they enjoy swimming under as well. I wish that those of you who are so strong in your opinions concerning their origin (and, in concept, rightfully so), would give these very gentle fish a try. I believe your opinion would change!

Contributed by Sandy Phelps

I too, have had much difficulty in locating any pertinent information on the Blood Parrots, other than they should never have happened, which is not very helpful to me as I have 2 beautiful BP's. I find them very charming and gentle, in contrast to the africans I have tried. Contrary to popular opinion, mine can close their mouths, and have no difficulty swimming or eating. In fact they are quite acrobatic and can swim quite quickly. They certainly are less deformed than fancy goldfish. I wish that I had discovered them sooner, and I plan to try more colors (calicos etc.). They are very attentive and will follow my finger across the glass. They do not harass or bite other fish and are not territorial. I think that rather than getting rid of them altogether we should instead work to improve them.

Contributed by Stephen Opp

I have had a Blood parrot for many years. I originally purchaced 2 at the pet store, one was green and the other was yellow. Within one year they both turned a bright orange, people would ask me all the time if they were goldfish! They grew from about 5 cm across to about 13 cm. Then one stopped growing in some places and not in others and developed a large belly and small head. The gills also separated so you could see right into his red fluffy lung tissue. Until this point the parrots were laying eggs, but then turning around and eating them as soon as they were laid. The parrot with the lung trouble lived about 2 years, despite the obvious problems. The normal one continued to grow and started to nip and charge at its former mate. After reading of the BP's origins I can't help but wonder if the problems with the lung/gills is a genetic tendency, considering how deformed they are even when healthy.

Contributed by Stacy Rogers

I purchased two Parrots a couple weeks ago. Contrary to the other comments, mine would bite and harass my other fish, a 3" barb. I was concerned about my barb hurting any new fish and the woman at the pet store suggested Parrots. I hoped the fish would adjust, but after a week I bought a new tank and separated the fish. I have been searching books and the web for info and I too have not found much.

Contributed by M. Gertken

I am an owner of a pet-shop in Sweden. I import my fishes from Singapore, including Red-Parrot fishes. These fishes are very hardy and live for many years, it is not often that they get any illness. The only thing that I have noticed is that they can get white-spot if the temperature in the tank is too low. I always keep 28-29 C, in the tanks with Red-Parrot fishes. They do well together with Black-Ghost knife fish, and diamond tetras. I feed them whith blood-worms, flakes and Hikari baby-pellets. I have been told by the exporters that they only export females, so that nobody else but the fish farm in Asia can breed them. If that is true I do not know.

Contributed by Daniel Alexson

Our Blood Parrots (we bought them as "scarlet parrots" but I guess that's the same thing) get along well with our community of mostly mild-mannered fish. They are only aggressive towards our African Dwarf Albino Frogs, who aggress right back, but because of the parrot's tiny mouths and the frog's large, soft mouths, nobody ever seems to get hurt. Maybe they're just playing. So far they have been hearty, healthy fish, with loads of personality. Definitely a fish I would recommend to anyone who just enjoys their fish and doesn't take them too seriously. They do seem to like to have a complex, planted tank environment with lots of "hang-outs". They were very shy for the first week or two, and then got right over it and now are usually first to the surface at feeding time.

Contributed by Joseph Preston

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