Fish Profiles: The Malawi Dolphin

Fish Profiles: The Malawi Dolphin

The Malawi Blue Dolphin (Cyrtocara moorii) is a freshwater fish species that is native to Lake Malawi in East Africa. It is also known as the Humphead Cichlid. The fish is characterized by its bright blue coloring and its ability to coexist with other African cichlids.

The Malawi Dolphin primarily inhabits areas of shallow water with sandy substrates. The fish can grow up to 10 inches in length for males and 8 inches for females. It is a micro-predator by nature, and its diet should be composed of live and frozen foods such as bloodworm, brine shrimp, chopped earthworms, prawns, etc. Dried foods are also taken, but should not be fed exclusively.

The Malawi Blue Dolphin is a peaceful species and should not be kept with boisterous cichlid species such as mbuna, but it will intimidate small fish with its sheer size. It is a shoaling species and should be maintained in a group.

Scientific name: Cyrtocara moorii
Order: Cichliformes
Family: Cichlidae
Phylum: Chordata
Average size: 25cm
Origin: Lake Malawi
Temperature: 25-28°C
Ideal conditions: 7.5-8.8 pH / 10-25°H
Temperament: Mostly peaceful
Expect to pay in store: £12-20

malawi dolphin

Try to buy 2 or 3 females per male if possible. The fish is a polygamous maternal mouthbrooder and is difficult to sex. A breeding aquarium should be at least 60 inches in length and furnished with large, flat rocks to provide potential spawning sites. There should also be large areas of open sand.

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Photo credit(s): Canva Pro Licence / Shutterstock

CichlidaeCichlidsFish profilesTropical fish

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