Proper Care of Texas Cichlid (Herichthys cyanoguttatus)Thanks to Jan Wirén for allowing us to use his picture. The second picture was sent to us by one of our visitors.
This page describes every aspect of housing Texas cichlids in fish tanks; In case you haven't found answer on your question below, use a form at the bottom to ask us! Also share experiences, please!
There are several color varieties, the main ones being the Red, Green, and Blue. The body of the fish should display white and turquoise dots on a golden background running down the middle of the body, as the dots approach the caudal fin they will turn dark. Most Texas cichlids should also display three black bars, for some reason there are a few that don’t.
Juvenile Texas cichlids will not display the full coloration, their bodies will display a grayish background with white dots, and there is also one black dot in the central part of the body with another at the base of the caudal fin.
Tank setup for the Texas cichlid:-
The smallest aquarium that a single Texas should be kept in is 75 gallons, if you intend to keep two then the aquarium needs to be at least 125 gallons, these fish need a lot of room. Fine sand is an ideal substrate and create hiding places with large rocks and bogwood or some form of roots. Only hardy plants should be added to the aquarium as the Texas will do a lot of rooting around, while establishing a territory, it may even attack or dislodge the plants entirely. Floating plants will also provide extra hiding places.
Compatible tank mates:-
Do not add any form of timid fish with the Texas, the tank mates need to be able to stick up for themselves, the safest option is to add other large cichlids from the same natural habitat.
Regular water changes are a must, as with all large cichlids, they produce a lot of waste but the Texas is very sensitive to any pollution in the aquarium. It is better to over filter the water rather than not have enough, 30-40% weekly water changes must be done to keep these fish happy.
The water temperature should be set between 21-24 deg C with a pH of 7 being ideal.
Feeding your Texas cichlid:-
Texas cichlids will accept flake and pellet food, so feed this as the main diet but treats of frozen food will be accepted readily. In the wild they will eat insects, crustaceans, worms and vegetable matter so try to include these in the diet as well.
Breeding the Texas cichlid:-
In the wild these are prolific breeders so if the water quality is good and they are well fed on a good diet, breeding should not be as problem. They prefer water that is well oxygenated and they are open breeders. Both parents will take the responsibility of looking after the fry; they will protect them very aggressively. It can be difficult to discriminate between male and female fish, but generally the female will be slightly smaller with less coloration than the male, nuchal bumps on the forehead may appear on the male but the female is also capable of growing a smaller version as well.
At a size of 2-3 inches the female should be ready to start spawning. As with most cichlids, the female will start to clean a suitable spawning site, here she will lay 500-1000 eggs. The male will soon swim to the spawning site to fertilize the eggs and then he will start guarding the nest. The eggs will be about 2mm in diameter and the female will spend all of her time tending them.
The hatching time for the eggs should be 3-5 days; in the meantime the female will be busy preparing a pit in the substrate ready for her fry. It may be that the eggs or fry may get eaten with the first few batches but with patience the parents will start raising fry with no problems. Aggressive behavior to other fish will be at a high during this stage, the male may even attack the female, leaving other fish in the tank may help to alleviate this. When the eggs have hatched, the fry will stay in their pit for a further 5-8 days before they become free swimming. Initially they will feed on vegetable matter but after a further week should accept crushed flake food and newly hatched brine shrimp.
As with every breeding pair the water quality must be excellent for the fry to survive to the juvenile stage.