Cookies seem to be disabled in your browser, therefore this website will NOT work properly! Please, consider enabling Cookies in order to maximise your user experience while browsing.
Recent discussions at Aqua-Fish+
  1. PondSealer at Maintainging a garden fish pond tasks on
  2. TheFishWorks at A guide on growing aquarium plants with FAQ, forum and species on …display more of the recent discussions
  3. Salviashaman at A guide on caring for Congo tetra (Phenacogrammus interruptus) on
  4. Salviashaman at A guide on setting a South American blackwater stream biotope aquarium on
  5. Figureguy at Chemistry of Aquarium Water with FAQ on
  6. Jackson20 at A guide on feeding aquarium fish frozen foods on
  7. Senator Wisdom at Bloodfin tetra (Aphyocharax alburnus) on
  8. CayceR at A page and forum devoted to keeping Blood parrot cichlids on
  9. Ness at A guide on raising African Dwarf Frogs with pictures and forum on
  10. Terry Mitchell at A guide on breeding, feeding and caring for L333 Pleco on
Nichols’ dwarf mouthbrooder - Pseudocrenilabrus nicholsi

Nichols’ dwarf mouthbrooder - Pseudocrenilabrus nicholsi

Scientific name: Pseudocrenilabrus nicholsi

Common name: Nichols’ dwarf mouthbrooder

Family: Cichlidae

Usual size in fish tanks: 8 - 9 cm (3.15 - 3.54 inch)


Recommended pH range for the species: 6 - 8

Recommended water hardness (dGH): 8 - 18°N (142.86 - 321.43ppm)

0°C 32°F30°C 86°F

Recommended temperature: 22 - 25 °C (71.6 - 77°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 Nichol’s dwarf mouthbrooder can be found in Africa, namely the Democratic Republic of Congo. It can be found in small rivers with slow moving waters and many local ponds.

Short description

Although this species is not all that common in the aquarium trade if you can find them they make a great addition to the aquarium and display a wonderful colouration. They belong to the family of cichlids and can become quite territorial especially at spawning times so bear this in mind when stocking. Adult specimens will reach an average length of 3.5 inches making them ideal for medium sized aquariums and males will display light blue scales on top of a pale gold background colour. Bear in mind that makes will become highly territorial and aggressive to one another so it is best to keep a single male with several females.


If cared for correctly, the average lifespan for Nichol’s dwarf mouthbrooder is expected to be between 6-7 years.

General care

Not a difficult species to care for but they do like high water quality in the aquarium. The minimum sized aquarium should be at least 36 inches in length (90 cm) and 12 inches deep (30 cm). Always use a filtration system rated for the water volume that the aquarium holds. The temperature range should be set between 22-25°C (72 -77°F) and keep the pH between 6.0-8.0. Sand or fine gravel should be used for the substrate and add hiding places with the use of rocks, wood or suitable ornaments. Plants can be added and they will not be harmed by these fish.

Perform regular water changes, at least 10% weekly as like all cichlids Nichol’s mouthbrooders can be high waste producers.

They tend to inhabit the lower levels of the aquarium so suitable tankmates are species that prefer the mid to higher levels such as tetras or rasboras.


Nichol’s dwarf mouthbrooder are classed as omnivorous so will require a mixed diet to keep them at their best. For the staple diet offer small cichlid pellets or a quality commercial flake but this will need to be varied with regular feedings of live or frozen foods. Brine shrimp, bloodworms and daphnia are ideal. You can also offer extra vegetable matter in the form of blanched peas or chopped cucumber.


Mature males will grow slightly larger than mature females and will display a brighter colouration. Some male specimens may also develop extended finnage but not all.


As you can see from their common name, they are a mouth brooding species and it is the female that holds the eggs and fry when they hatch. It is best to use a separate breeding tank and you will need several females to add to the tank with one male. They are not difficult to get to breed but it will help if you condition the parent fish on meaty foods for a couple of weeks prior to spawning. This will also help to build up strength in the female fish.

The male will prepare a nest in the substrate by digging out a pit and then he will try to entice the female over to deposit her eggs. The male will display to the females and when a female is ready to spawn she will swim over to the pit and the male will nudge her to encourage the eggs to be laid. Once the eggs are laid the female will scoop them into her mouth and then swim to the male and hold her mouth near his vent so that he can release the milt which is then also scooped into her mouth for fertilisation.

The eggs will take approximately 10 days to incubate the eggs and to hold the fry until they are free swimming, at this point she will release them so that they can feed.

Once the fry are released they can be fed on newly hatched brine shrimp, or a commercial egg layer fry food until they are large enough to digest the same food as their parents.

The female should be rested for at least 3 weeks before you attempt to use her for breeding purposes so that she can regain her full strength.


Bought by from’ dwarf mouthbrooder, picture 1 Nichols’ dwarf mouthbrooder, picture 2

Did you know?

Please, verify whether your login and password are valid. If you don't have an account here, register one free of charge, please. Click here to close this box.

You have been logged out successfully! This box will close automatically!

Something went wrong during processing your message, please try again!

Your message has been sent, thanks a lot!

Page has been saved, refresh it now, please!

The page has been created, you will now be redirected!

URL already exists!

Path to the photo is not unique!

Really delete this page from the database?

The page has been removed successfully, you will be redirected now!

The page couldn't be deleted!!

Unfortunately this page doesn't allow discussion. Please, find any other page that fits your area of interest as over 99% of our pages allow discussion. The reason why no discussion is allowed here is this page is too general. Thanks a lot for understanding! Click here to search, please!

Really delete this comment from the site?

Really delete this image from the site?

Really delete this image from the site?

Selected comment has been removed successfully!

Selected image has been removed successfully!

Either login or email address is required

Account has been recovered, please check your email for further instructions