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Amphilophus citrinellus (Midas Cichlid, Cichlasoma citrinellum)

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This large and impressive fish occurs in two morphs, grey and yellow. The grey morph is rarely traded as an aquarium fish. The yellow form ranges from orange to lemon yellow in colour. This yellow form is superficially similar to Amphilophus labiatus but Amphilophus citrinellus lacks that species thick lips and tends to be larger and more deep bodied. Male fish develop a very prominent nuchal hump and also tend to be bigger and possess longer fins. Sexing juveniles is not possible.

Fish information (behaviour and breeding):

An exceptionally aggressive species, these fish can only be safely kept with other robust species, and even then keeping them in a large tank with plenty of space is critical. This fish likes to dig and will destroy plants. Their digging will likely ruin an undergravel filter and can undermine precarious rockwork, so arrange the aquarium with care.

This species is an omnivore that does well on a mixed diet including insect larvae, worms, and pellets. Generally hardy and easy to keep.

Breeding presents few problems once a pair has formed, but being belligerent towards one another actually getting the fish to pair in the first place is a challenge. Raising juvenile fish together and allowing them to pair off naturally is the best approach. They spawn freely and the fry are easy to rear. These fish are excellent parents and defend the eggs and fry vigourously.

Family Group: South and Central American Cichlids
Distribution Central America: Costa Rica & Nicaragua
Temperature Around 25C
Size 25-30 cm
Water Parameters Adaptable, but avoid soft/acid conditions
Water PH 7.0-8.0