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Frontosa cichlid - Cyphotilapia frontosa

Frontosa cichlid - Cyphotilapia frontosa

Scientific name: Cyphotilapia frontosa

Common name: Frontosa cichlid

Family: Cichlidae

Usual size in fish tanks: 25 - 30 cm (9.84 - 11.81 inch)


Recommended pH range for the species: 7 - 8.9

Recommended water hardness (dGH): 12 - 30°N (214.29 - 535.71ppm)

0°C 32°F30°C 86°F

Recommended temperature: 23 - 29 °C (73.4 - 84.2°F)

The way how these fish reproduce: Spawning

Where the species comes from: Africa

Temperament to its own species: peaceful

Temperament toward other fish species: aggressive to smaller

Usual place in the tank: Bottom levels


The Frontosa Cichlid is an omnivore and will accept a variety of live foods such as worms, brine shrimp and other small fish. They will also enjoy a good meal of frozen beef hearts. In the aquarium they will readily accept a variety of prepared foods including algae flakes or wafers.


It is difficult to tell males from females when they are immature. A mature male will have a very large vestigial hump on his head. The female may display a slight forehead hump but not as much as the male.


Frontosa Cichlids are mouth-brooders. The male will prepare his territory or cave and a smooth surface upon which the female will lay her eggs. Once she has laid her eggs the male will fertilize them. There might be around 50 eggs which will seem very large. She will take them all into her mouth and hold on to them for up to 2 months.


A Frontosa Cichlid can live for over 25 years.


The Frontosa Cichlid comes from the depths of Lake Tanganyika in East Africa. This fish can be found as deep as 60 feet or more.

Short Description

Different varieties of this cichlid have evolved to live in the different parts of the lake. The 7 variations are named according to where they can be found: Burundi, Karilani, Kavala, Kigoma, Mpimbwe, Zaire and Zambia.


Thanks to Alberto Villarroya for pictures. Others were bought by from

Frontosa cichlid Frontosa cichlid Frontosa cichlid Frontosa cichlid Frontosa cichlid Frontosa cichlid Frontosa cichlid Frontosa cichlid Frontosa cichlid Frontosa cichlid, picture 1 - adult specimen Frontosa cichlid, picture 2 - adult specimen Frontosa cichlid, picture 1 - juvenile specimen Frontosa cichlid, picture 2 - juvenile specimen Frontosa cichlid, picture 3 - juvenile specimen

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