Care Level: Easy
Live Plant Safe: No
General Description: The Electric Blue Cichlid, also referred to as the Hap Ahli or Electric Blue Ahli, is endemic throughout Lake Malawi in rocky shorelines and intermediate sandy zones. The majority of specimens within the aquarium trade are now commercially produced, however; it is rare to encounter wild imported Electric blue cichlids for sale. This fish is often referred to as a ‘Hap’ because it is within the tribe of African cichlids known as Haplochromines. Female Electric blue cichlids will have a silvery body with faint vertical stripes; this is also true of young males, however a tinge of blue coloration could be observed. An adult male Electric blue cichlid lives up to its name, showcasing an incredibly deep blue body. Some males may also develop a yellow anal fin, or a white forehead that extends across the dorsal fin. Electric blue cichlids are ambush predators of many Mbuna in nature, and therefore may not be a fish for the community Malawi aquarium. At the very least, choose tank mates accordingly so that they do not become a meal to your Electric blue cichlid. Male Electric blue cichlids can be quite aggressive toward each other, and toward male Aulonocara (Peacock cichlid) species, but this temperament may not be exhibited across all individuals. Take caution mixing a male Electric blue cichlid with any female Aulonocara as hybridization has been reported. An adult Electric blue cichlid can reach a size of approximately 8″.
Diet Requirements: Electric blue cichlids are piscivores but they do not require live fish in the aquarium to thrive. In fact, we discourage feeding live fish because they are often of little nutritional value and increase the risk of introducing disease. A diet made up of various high quality proteins are ideal, mainly frozen chunks of shrimp, silverside fish, and beef heart. Electric blue cichlids will accept large sinking pellet foods and flake foods, but these should not make up a large portion of the diet. Variety is the spice of life in order to maintain color, immune function and longevity of your fish.
Care Requirements: An established minimum 55 gallon aquarium is ideal for an Electric blue cichlid. Biweekly water changes are encouraged to keep water parameters up to standard (Nitrates < 30 ppm). The aquarium should be aquascaped generously with stacked rocks to create many hiding spaces and caves, but some unobstructed and open swimming space should also be provided. A sandy or fine substrate is preferred and the aquarium needs to be well oxygenated. African cichlid specific substrates, or even marine Aragonite substrate, are great choices because they will buffer the pH and alkalinity to levels characteristic of Lake Malawi. Electric blue cichlids are compatible with a number of Malawian and Tanganyikan fish, but should not be kept with overly pugnacious species, or species that can become a meal. Compatability among numerous Electric blue cichlids becomes uncertain and variable as they reach sexual maturity. Recommended water conditions, 74-80° F, KH 10-25, pH 7.5-8.5.
Purchase Size: Small: 1-1/2” to 2”; Medium: 2-1/4” to 3”; Large: 3-1/4” to 4”
Note: Your item may not look identical to the image provided due to variation within species. Purchase sizes are approximate.