Care Level: Easy
Live Plant Safe: Yes
General Description: The Borelli Apistogramma, or simply Apisto for short, are found throughout tributaries of the Rio Paraguay and lower Rio Parana basins in Brazil, Paraguay and northern Argentina. Due to the popularity of this fish, the Borelli apisto is readily available through commercial farming. This species is also referred to as the Opal Apistogramma, which is due to the beautiful opal-blue coloration shown by the males that contrast with bright red facial markings and yellow fins. Female Borelli apisto have a yellowish body and some facial markings, but they are more muted in color. Subordinate males will show more dull coloration in the presence of a dominant male. Even though apistogrammas are cichlids, they are very peaceful (with the exception of territoriality during spawning) and are popular choices for planted and community aquariums. These fish are obligate bottom dwellers, and will almost entirely ignore fish in all other regions of the aquarium. Either a single male Borelli apisto, a male – female pair, or a male with a harem of females is generally recommended per aquarium. An adult Borelli apisto can reach a size of approximately 2-1/2″, with males averaging larger than females.
Diet Requirements: Apistogrammas are carnivores. A diet made up of various high quality protein based flake foods, sinking pellet foods and frozen foods such as bloodworms, brine shrimp, daphnia or other mixed freshwater preparations are ideal. Variety is the spice of life in order to maintain color, immune function and longevity of your fish.
Care Requirements: An established minimum 15 to 20 gallon aquarium is ideal for a single Borelli apisto. We recommend sizing up to a 30 gallon aquarium for a pair. If one wants to attempt to keep multiple pairs together, no less than 75 gallons should be considered. Borelli apisto should not be introduced into a biologically immature aquarium, as they have sensitivities to nitrite and ammonia. Weekly water changes are encouraged to keep water parameters up to standard (Nitrates < 15 ppm). The aquarium should be aquascaped generously with rocks, wood and other furnishings to create many hiding spaces. Few hiding spaces could result in your Borelli apisto acting more aggressively toward tank mates. Broken terra cotta pots are often used as spawning caves for this species. An ideal environment for a Borelli apisto would also include a good proportion of live plants. Given their temperament, Borelli apisto rarely conflict with tank mates and are best kept with peaceful community species, such as tetras, danios and rasboras. Other semi-aggressive bottom dwelling species and dwarf cichlids, such as ram cichlids, should be avoided. Recommended water conditions, 72-78° F, KH 2-15, pH 5.0-6.0.
Purchase Size: Medium: 1-1/4” to 1-1/2”
Note: Your item may not look identical to the image provided due to variation within species. Purchase sizes are approximate.