The cichlids for the 55g arrived today. I ordered them from Alan Bliven of Cichlid Lovers in Arizona and had them shipped same day. The shipment included P. demasoni, L. caeruleus, and M. estherae. Also in the shipment were some J. marlieri, but they’re for another tank.
I went with some Lake Malawi Mbuna cichlids for a few reasons. One, I wanted some really nice color varieties for this tank. Two, I already have a Tanganyikan tank and thought it would be good to mix things up. Three, I haven’t kept three Mbuna species together in the past, so there was the intrigue aspect of it. Finally, availability and price were factors.
They’re all juveniles, so they’re quite small (~1-2″). After acclimating for a bit, all of them were released into the tank at the same time and they all look great, eagerly swimming around upon entry. Also, their colors are very vibrant, even without the tank lights on.
As I expected, the “Electric Yellows” (caeruleus) are the more timid of the three species. The “Cherry Red Zebras” (estherae) are much more gregarious, more so than the demasonis. There is plenty of rock work from end-to-end in the tank, as there should be for mbuna, so the Yellows should settle in pretty well and get more active soon.
I’ll take some photos and update this blog entry soon.