Peacock Cichlid: Full Care guide

Peacock Cichlid is native to Lake Malawi. They are some of the most colorful fish in the world and also they are one of the most friendly and peaceful members of the Cichlids. In This care guide, you will learn how to care for them, diet, tank mates, tank size, and many more.

CategoryRating
Care Level:Easy.
Temperament:Semi-aggressive.
Color Form:Various: Typically blue.
LIfespan:8 Years.
Size:4-6 Inches.
Diet:Omnivore.
Family:Chilidae.
Minimum Tank Size:55 Gallons.
Tank Set-Up:Freshwater: Driftwood and caves.
Compatibility:Mixed

Overview of Peacock Cichlid

They are native to Lake Malawi. It belongs to the Astaotilapia genus. There are at least 22 different species of peacocks, the majority of which have stunning coloration. They have many colors that vary from blues, reds to yellows. The most popular is blue colored one (Aulomocara Nyassae).

The Cichlid is also known for being aggressive but the Peacock Cichlid is fairly peaceful. Males can be territorial, but they are peaceful and can make good community fish.

The appearance of Peacock Cichlid

Peacock Cichlid
Peacock Cichlid

The Cichlid are some of the most colored freshwater fish. They are vivid colored fish, ranging from blue, gold, orange to yellow. At first glance, you may think it has a matt color, but try to look from a different angle you the iridescent color.

Like others Cichlid, Their color does not depend on the mood or breeding status. Their color varies depending on the region of Lake Malawi it comes from. If you are looking to add color to your tank make sure you buy male because the juvenile and flames are typically dark gray.

Types of Peacock Cichlid

There are at least 22 recognized species of Peacock Cichlid. However, not all of them are traded in the aquarium hobby. The most popular ones are:

  • African Butterfly Peacock (Aulonocara jacobfreibergi).
  • Flavescent Peacock (Aulonocara stuartgranti).
  • Nkhomo Benga Peacock (Aulonocara baenschi).
  • Sunshine Peacock (Aulonocara stuartgranti).

The Red Peacock Cichlid (Aulonocara stuartgranti)

This is a variety of the Flavescent Peacock. It is a manmade creation and not naturally occurring. It is the same size as other peacocks except for red coloration. They are also known as Ruby Red and Rubin Red.

The blue Peacock Cichlid (Aulonocara nyassae)

A metallic blue to a bright yellow, and during the breeding season their color will become even more enhanced. The females are gray in color.

OB Peacock

The OB Peacock are hybrids and are crossbreeds between pure Peacock Cichlids breeds. They are the same size as regular peacocks and offer some unique coloration.

Size of Peacock Cichlid

They can grow up to 6 inches long. Females being slightly smaller.

The Behavior of Peacock Cichlid

They are bottom dwellers. In the wild, they will be found at depths of 6 to 40 meters. They will hunt for food amongst the sand, you will also find this behavior in the aquarium. If they detect any movement from any invertebrates, they will hover above the sand to strick them. They are also a good swimmer and one of the most peaceful Cichlid fish available.

The Tank Requirement of Peacock Cichlid

They come from Lake Malawi, therefore your aquarium should closely resemble conditions found there. The lake is known for its clarity and is extremely stable in terms of its pH level. The lake is also known for having alkaline water.

The minimum recommended Tank should be 55 Gallon tank. Use rocks and sand as aquarium substrate, Do not use gravel because it can injure your fish. Make plenty of cave and hiding space using rocks. They are not aggressive but they are territorial. So breaking up the tank with caves help to reduce their territorial behavior.

If you want to use live plants you can use them. They will not eat the plants but like other Cichlid, they tend to ding and reposition the plants. Because of this you should only use hardy plants like Java Ferns of Anacharis and make sure to anchor them.

If you want to keep a community of them, then use at least 100 gallons tank. The bigger the tank the fewer territorial issues you will have. They are active swimmers so a horizontal tank is preferable. Want to mix different varieties of Peacocks then make sure to make up to their individual needs. Some of them prefer more rocky environments, whilst others prefer sand. For this reason, a larger aquarium is needed when mixing Peacocks.

Tank Conditions

You should keep the water temperature between 76-82oF. pH level should be kept within 7.8-8.6. You must ensure that your aquarium’s water temperature remains as consistent as possible.

you must keep the water as clean as possible. They are used to very clear waters in the natural habitat and their health will suffer if you do not maintain their water quality.

What size tank do Peacock Cichlid need?

They will need at least a 55-gallon aquarium. 100-gallon tank for a community to keep them.

Peacock Cichlid Diet

They are omnivores meaning they will eat both plants/vegetables and meat. They are bottom dwellers meaning they will sift through the sandy substrates for food. In the wild, their food will typically be insects, larvae, zooplankton, and other crustaceans. Start by making quality cichlid pellet the core of their diet; you can then supplement this with meat and vegetable.

For meat :

  • Brine Shrimp (live or frozen).
  • Daphnia Frozen.

You should aim to feed them several smaller portions throughout the day instead of single large feeding, this will help to maintain the water chemistry.

Tankmates for Peacock Cichlid

Peacock cichlids are not like other cichlid and they are generally much more peaceful. The important thing you need to do is make sure that any fish you want to keep with your Peacock can survive in the same water parameters.

You can keep Haps (Haplochromis) with Peacock Cichlids:

  • Copadichromis.
  • Placidochromis.
  • Nyassachromis.

There are some fish you must avoid:

  • Petrotilapia.
  • Labeotropheus.
  • Mbuna.

Hey, I am Shuvradeb Biswas a content writer. Fishkeeping is my hobby. There are many problems I faced during my first fishkeeping. So, I made the KeepingWorld.com blog to help new fishkeepers.

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