As "Fish of the Month" a bag of these fish will be auctioned off at the next meeting. There is 6 fish in a bag and they are around 4-5cm. Proceeds to the Stuart Grant Fund for Cichlid Preservation. This month's FoTM is kindly donated by Brett (Poncho).
Cyrtocara moorii - Malawi Blue Dolphin.
Cyrtocara moorii - also called the Malawi Blue Dolphin by hobbyists is a gentle giant ideal for the larger community of Malawi cichlids, this species was formerly named Haplochromis moorii.
Males can reach at least 10″ (25cm), sometimes a little larger. Females tend to stop growing at around 8″ (20cm).
Cichlidae. Subfamily: Pseudocrenilabrinae
Endemic to Lake Malawi. It has a widespread distribution, primarily inhabiting areas of shallow water with sandy substrates. Despite this range it doesn’t seem to be very common in the lake.
It’s a micro-predator by nature, so the bulk of the diet should be composed of live and frozen foods. It relishes bloodworm, brine shrimp, chopped earthworms, prawns etc. Dried foods are also taken, but should not be fed exclusively.
60″ x 15″ x 18″ (150cm x 37.5cm x 45cm) – 250 litres should be the minimum size aquarium considered. Provide a substrate of sand and plenty of open swimming space. Unless the tank is really huge it’s best to restrict any rock work to the perimeters, as the species can be quite flighty and may injure itself in a rock-filled setup.
WATER CONDITIONS :
Temperature: 25-29°C pH: 7.5-8.8 Hardness: 10-25°H
Peaceful and should not be kept with boisterous species such as mbuna but will intimidate small fish with its sheer size. Ideal tankmates include Frontosa, large peaceful Haps such as Fossorochromis rostratus and Rift Lake Synodontis species. This is a shoaling species and should be maintained in a group. Try to buy 2 or 3 females per male if possible. Male fish become territorial when spawning.
Contrary to belief, breeding is not as easy as other Malawis. Polygamous maternal mouthbrooder. The breeding aquarium should be at least 60″ in length and furnished as suggested above, with the addition of some large, flat rocks to provide potential spawning sites. There should also be large areas of open sand. A pH of 8.0-8.5 and a temperature between 77-81°F are ideal. A breeding group of one male and 3-6 females is recommended. As this species is difficult to sex, we recommend the purchase of a group of 8-10 young fish which are then allowed to develop naturally. Bear in mind this may take some time, as C. moorii does not become sexually mature until it reaches around 5″ in length.
Photos are taken from Google.
Description comes from Seriously Fish and an edit from myself.