For the pike fans out there, especially fans of the dwarf species, see the latest issue of AMAZONAS Magazine. It is subscription only, but is well worth it, in my opinion. Anyway, the January/February 2021 issue has a great article on Crenicichla wallacii, a beautiful dwarf species. The article also contains several great photos of both wallacii and another dwarf species known as sp. “Essequibo,” named for the river in Guyana in which it is found. Though most pikes grow quite large, the dwarf species usually max out at about 4-5″. For photos of wallacii, you’ll need to do a Web search or you can visit The Cichlid Room Companion’s C. wallacii page.
For the L. brevis lovers out there, the latest edition of Cichlid News contains a great profile article by Ad Konings. The magazine is subscription only, but for the quality of articles it publishes, it is not very expensive, in my opinion. Currently, a two-year e-subscription is $46 USD. I am a subscriber and I can’t recommend it highly enough. Get it!
Permit me to anthropomorphize with this post. So, I don’t necessarily believe in animal “happiness” and other emotions, as we (humans) define them. However, I do believe that animals can reach a state of contentedness, just as they can a state of excitement.
I have made it no secret that I am a big fan of the Telmatochromis genus. Containing roughly six species, most members of this genus resemble species of the Julidochromis genus. Most are torpedo shaped and quite small. One of my favorites, however, is the bulldog of the genus – temporalis. If you follow this species you know that the normal temporalis, not to be confused with the dwarf morph, sp. “temporalis shell,” is quite robust in body shape. Unlike it’s torpedo-shaped cousins, both normal and dwarf morphs of temporalis also have a very noticeable nuchal hump. In fact, both sexes of temporalis posses this hump, with the male’s being more pronounced. In my experience, males are very territorial, not unlike many male cichlids. But I digress.
For those of you interested in South American dwarves, the Laetacara araguaiae is a beautiful, easy to keep little fish. If you aren’t familiar with it, check out the species profile in the September/October 2020 issue of AMAZONAS Magazine. Written by well renowned cichlid expert Dr. Paul V. Loiselle, the profile is quite detailed and provides a great snapshot of the species. You can read an excerpt of the profile on the magazine publishers website here – Reef to Rainforest Media.
Back in August, I posted about a nice way to feed shellie fry. I have subsequently improved upon that method. The syringe and water line tube work great…until they don’t. What I discovered is that, over time, the tube end that connects to the syringe will “stretch” such that the connection point isn’t airtight. What happens is 1) air gets in between the tube and the syringe, preventing a good suction and 2) just a little bit of air will allow whatever food you’ve been able to pull into the tube to invariably flow back out before you can remove it from the food source.
Two ways that you, as a cichlid keeper, can truly understand the behaviors of your fish are through observation and experience. The longer you keep certain species, the better acquainted you’ll become with their behavior. Over time, your intuition will guide you. Trust it!