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FRESH WATER

Fishes

Red tiger cichlid
(Parachromis motaguensis)

Verified by the experts

Many thanks to Imex Cichlidé for writing this sheet!

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Red tiger cichlid

Red tiger cichlid
(Parachromis motaguensis)

A big cichlide very aggressive, which has reflections as well as beautiful colors.

Scientific name

Parachromis motaguensis

Common name

Red tiger cichlid
False yellowjacket cichlid

Origin

what are its countries of origin?

Origin: Central America (Guatemala, Honduras)
Biotope: American

Dimorphism

what are the physical differences between males and females?

The male is larger, longer and taller while the female is stockier. For color differences, see "Good to know"

Group

Group

Cichlidae

Volume

what is the minimum volume for this species?

600 L / 132 imp gal / 158 US gal in specific
2000 L / 440 imp gal / 530 US gal in community

Water parameters

what are the water parameters for the maintenance of this fish?

T°: 24 à 28°C or 75 to 82°F
pH: 7 to 8
Hardness: /

Difficulty

Difficulty

Hard

Size

what is the maximum size of this fish?

25/30cm or 10/12" (female)
30/40cm or 12/16" (male)

Life expectancy

what is the average life expectancy of this fish?

10 years

Living zone

in which area of the aquarium does this fish live?

Everywhere

Individuals

sociability of the species

2 (couple)

Food

How to feed the Red tiger cichlid?

Food

How to feed the Red tiger cichlid?

P.motaguensis is piscivorous (eating fish). Dehydrated type of food (such as granules) is suitable, as well as fresh or frozen foods (such as mussels and fries). To prevent nutritional deficiencies (vitamins, trace elements, minerals...), it is recommended to diversify the diet.

Excess food is to be avoided to keep "a beautiful form".

Behavior

What kind of behavior does the Red tiger cichlid have?

Behavior

What kind of behavior does the Red tiger cichlid have?

P.motaguensis can be a nightmare to maintain because of a terribly aggressive temper, even sometimes in the best possible conditions. The establishment of a couple is not easy without the female being killed...

In the Parachromis genre, its aggressiveness is often compared to that of Dovii.

Like the Dovii, the community aquarium is not conceivable below 2000 liters or 440 Imp Gal or 530 US Gal!

Cohabitation

Who can live with the Red tiger cichlid?

Cohabitation

Who can live with the Red tiger cichlid?

As said before, Motaguensis does not really like to have congeners. If you wish to add roommates, it will require an aquarium of at least 300 x 100 cm or 120 x 40 inch (front x width).

Nevertheless, be sure to introduce species capable of facing him or you will see all your fish jump from the tank one by one.

Breeding

How to breed the Red tiger cichlid?

Breeding

How to breed the Red tiger cichlid?

The female usually lays on a flat rock. The female takes very good care of the fry while the male protects the spawning area.

female Parachromis motaguensis

Its aquarium

Which aquarium for the Red tiger cichlid?

Its aquarium

Which aquarium for the Red tiger cichlid?

For a specific aquarium, a tank of 200 x 60 cm or 80 x 24 inch (front x width) will be ideal for an adult couple. For the community it would be necessary to aim in 350 x 100 cm or 140 x 40 inch (see «cohabitation»).

For the decor, mimic its natural environment composed of rocks, roots and sand. Thus, the ideal aquarium for Motaguensis will consist of roots and hiding places formed with stones. No plant should be added on pain of seeing it mixed and eaten in a short time.

For the soil, opt for a non-cutting substrate like the Loire sand because this fish likes to dig in the ground. It must be avoided that it gets hurt during this activity. Note that pool sand can also be a good alternative.

To avoid any pollution, change the water of your aquarium regularly: a renewal of 10% of the total volume will be necessary each week. Also plan a filtration of at least 5x the volume of your tank per hour to obtain a quality water.

Tip: Adding Pothos and external filtering plants will be very useful for keeping nitrates low. Indeed, these plants will consume the nitrates and thus keep a good quality of water. This will allow you to change only 10% of the volume per week (which is already 60 liters or 13 Imp Gal or 16 US Gal for the specific aquarium). Without these plants, the amount of water to renew is much higher (30%), as well as your water bill! So do not hesitate to use them if you want to avoid selling your aquarium to pay your water bill.

Good to know

Good to know

Find all additional information!

The water parameters are not important for these fairly tolerant fish in this area. However, it will be necessary to ensure its good quality and its cleanliness.

Their colours/reflections may vary depending on their «emotional state».

The female has a very red dress almost uniform, only colored red and black. That of the male is brighter, its color / reflection varies from gray to yellow, through blue and orange: a real rainbow fin!

  • Le mâle
    Parachromis motaguensis male

  • La femelle
    Parachromis motaguensis female

Alternative species

Alternative species

Discover the similar species

None (for the moment!)

Verified by the experts

Many thanks to Imex Cichlidé for writing this sheet!

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