Saturday, October 15, 2011

Herichthys Cyanoguttatus - Texas Cichlid.

Scientific name:  Herichthys cyanoguttatus
Common name:  Texas cichlid 
Max. size: 30 cm / 12 inches
pH range: 6.5 – 8.0
dH range: 8-25
Temperature range: 21-24° C / 70-75° F

The Texas cichlid is the only cichlid native to the United States. .The Texas cichlid is considered difficult to keep, primarily due to its feisty temperament. This fish is not recommended for beginners. If you take good care of your Texas cichlid it can reach an age of 15 years.

Texas cichlid common names:
The Texas cichlid is primarily known under two names in English: Texas cichlid and Rio Grande cichlid. Sport fishers sometimes refer to it as the Rio Grande perch. 

Texas cichlid description:
The Texas cichlid displays a sparkling golden colour with pearly highlights. The body and fins are decorated with white and turquoise dots. Along the middle, rear half of the body and at the base of the caudal fin of the fish you can see several small black dots. Many Texas cichlids have three black bars on the body. Juvenile Texas cichlids are pearl-gray with white dots on body and fins. They have two prominent black dots; one in the centre of the body and one at the base of the caudal fin.During the breeding period, the underside of the Texas cichlid turns completely black and the three black bars will intensify in colour.

Texas cichlid setup:
In the wild, Texas cichlids are found in densely grown pools and runs of small to large rivers and it is a good idea to mimic this type of environment in the aquarium. A single Texas cichlid can be kept in a 75 gallon aquarium, while a couple needs at least 125 gallons. If you get a pair, be prepared to divide the aquarium into two separate parts in case of extensive violence. If you want to keep a Texas cichlid with other fish, the aquarium must be at least 125 gallonsFins sand is an ideal substrate for a Texas cichlid aquarium, and plenty of rocks and roots should be added to create hiding spots. It is also a good idea to use rocks, roots and plants to divide the aquarium into several territories. As mentioned above, the natural habitat of the Texas cichlid contains plenty of aquatic plants. Since the Texas cichlid likes to burrow around plants and sometimes even attack plants, it is important to pick sturdy species that can handle this type of behavior. Your Texas cichlid will definitely appreciate getting some floating plants to hide under.

Texas cichlid tank mates:
The Texas cichlid is a territorial fish and you must be careful when picking its tank mates. Only combine the Texas cichlid with fish that can fend for themselves and will not tolerate being bullied. You can for instance combine Texas cichlids with other big cichlids from Central and South America

Texas cichlid care:
The Texas cichlid is sensitive to high levels of organic waste. Combine proper filtration with frequent water changes. Changing 25-40% of the water once a week is a good rule of thumb, but you might have to modify it to suit your particular aquarium. The pH-value should be kept around neutral (pH 7.0) and the water should be soft or medium hard. The recommended water temperature is 70-75° F (21-24° C) but these fishes can adapt to higher temperatures as long as the change is gradual.

Texas cichlid feeding:
Wild Texas cichlids live on insects, crustaceans, worms and plant matter, and it is advisable to mimic this varied diet in captivity. The Texas cichlid is known to readily accept most type of dry, frozen and freeze-dried food in the aquarium. You can for instance use high-quality flakes or cichlid pellets as base, and supplement with vegetables, algae based food, and different types of live/frozen/freeze-dried meaty foods such as worms. 

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