Name: Melanochromis maingano
Max Size: 14cm
Origin: Lake Malawi, Africa
Minimum Tank Size: 150 litres
Africa provides many hundreds of tropical cichlids that have adapted to rain forest water (soft water at 7.0 pH) in West Africa or to Rift Lake water (hard water with lots of salts and minerals at 8.3 to 8.5 pH). West African cichlids include Kribensis and Jewel Cichlids. The large Rift Lakes include Malawi, Tanganyika and Victoria, which produce some of the most colourful freshwater fish. Many reach the 12-16 cm in size that makes them ideal for a large community cichlid aquarium.
Although seen as aggressive fish, the majority of African cichlids can be kept together in a large aquarium of at least 120 litres so long as they are of similar size. The aquarium should be heated to between 25-27°C and a pH of 7.5-8.2 be maintained through use of buffers such as Seachem Rift Lake Salts and KH Generator Buffer.
Believe it or not but most Africans are primarily vegetarian in the wild so a suitable cichlid food such as Sera Flora or Hikari Cichlid Excel should be fed as a staple diet, with the occasional addition of frozen or live foods.