Care Level: Easy
Live Plant Safe: No
General Description: The Yellow Lab Cichlid is endemic to two distinct habitats of Lake Malawi: one is that of rocky areas, and the other is heavily vegetated beds of Vallisneria. Perhaps one of the most sought after fishes for an African cichlid display, Yellow labs are treasured for their solid yellow coloration. There is considerable variation among individuals however, as the ‘electric yellow’ form is less common than the paler yellow form typical of Yellow labs. Additionally, some individuals will have a stark black dorsal fin while others may not ever exhibit this trait in their life time. The Yellow lab is relatively peaceful as far as African cichlids are concerned, and are one of the few that can also be maintained in groups successfully. Keeping them in an overcrowded tank is suggested nevertheless to spread out or reduce aggression, particularly when spawning occurs. There are few diagnosable differences between males and females; black in the dorsal fin is inconclusive to determine sex. An adult Yellow lab can reach a size of approximately 4″.
Diet Requirements: Yellow labs are primarily herbivorous and such foods should make up a large portion of their diet rather than proteins. Various high quality vegetable and spirulina based flake foods and sinking pellet foods are ideal. Frozen spirulina brine shrimp can be fed in moderation. Blanched vegetables are excellent options. 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 Yellow labs. 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. Yellow labs will do well with other Malawian cichlids that are not overly pugnacious, and have also been kept successfully with larger, hard water rainbowfish species and larger barb species. Recommended water conditions, 74-80° F, KH 10-25, pH 7.5-8.5.
Purchase Size: Small: 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.