Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Parachromis managuense - Jaguar cichlid

The Jaguar cichlid is renowned for being a vicious and highly aggressive species, but you can actually keep most Jaguar cichlids with other fish as long as you select the right tank mates. The aquarium must also be big and decorated in a way that makes it possible for the Jaguar cichlid to claim a part of it as private territory. The Jaguar cichlid has for instance been successfully kept in the same aquarium as Silver dollars, Convict cichlids and Plecos. Some Jaguar cichlids are however too aggressive to be kept with any other fishes and must be given their own aquarium. You should also keep in mind that Jaguar cichlids are highly aggressive during the breeding period, and a spawning couple should therefore always be kept in their own aquarium or in an aquarium that has been divided by a net or glass. A breeding couple will not hesitate to attack fish that is much larger than them. 

The scientific name for the Jaguar cichlid is Parachromis managuense, but you might also encounter the name Parapetenia managuense when you read about this species. The Jaguar cichlid belongs to a subfamily named Cichlasomatinae in the cichlid family Cichlidae. Just like all the other cichlids it is a ray-finned fish found in the class Actinopterygii in the order Perciformes. 

The Jaguar cichlid is an active and charming fish with a beautiful look. It can survive up to 15 years in a well kept aquarium. The body is golden or yellow and features dark markings. A fully grown Jaguar cichlid will need a big aquarium since an adult male can grow up to 55 centimeters (1.8 feet) in length. Expecting your male Jaguar cichlid to reach a length of 40 centimeters (1.3 feet) is however more realistic. The heaviest male Jaguar cichlid ever recorded weighed 1,580 g (3.48 lbs). A female Jaguar cichlid will typically be smaller than the males and stay below 30 centimeters (1 foot) in length. 

One single Jaguar cichlid can be housed in a 125 gallon (473 liter) aquarium. If you want to keep it in a community or habitat aquarium, the other species will naturally affect the recommended aquarium size. It is not advisable to create a community/habitat aquarium with a Jaguar cichlid if your tank is smaller than 180 gallons (681 liters). A breeding Jaguar cichlid couple should also preferably be provided with a 180 gallon (681 liter) aquarium or bigger. 

Your Jaguar cichlid will prefer a pH between 7.0 and 8.7 since this is the pH value of its native waters. The recommended dH range is 10-15. The water temperature must be quite high in the aquarium; 77 - 97° F (25 - 36° C). 

In the wild, the Jaguar cichlid is a skilled predator that feeds chiefly on fish and big invertebrates. Soft rayed fish is preferred, but the Jaguar cichlid is not fuzzy about its food. It will appreciate live food in the aquarium, but training it onto pellets is not difficult. Choose a high quality pellet that has been made to meet the nutritional needs of larger predator fish. If you do not produce your own live food, you should keep in mind that feeder fish from pet stores might introduce disease in the aquarium. Many Jaguar cichlid keepers therefore feed their Jaguar cichlids fish meat instead. Earthworms and krill are two other good choices. 

No comments:

Post a Comment