By Lacey Bryant
What is the cichlid information that a hobbyist needs to know? Well, first things first - the introduction to the cichlid family. Cichlids are fishes that belong to the family of Cichlidae. To easily relate with this species some of the most popular species of this kind are the angelfish, Oscar, Jack Dempsey, and Discus. The cichlidae family is an extremely diverse variety. Moreover, they inhabit in various environments. Not only do they vary in diversities but also in sizes, temperaments, feeding habits, and water quality preference. Cichlids are commonly abundant in fresh and slightly salty water and are widespread in Asia, Africa, and South America.
The cichlid variety is primarily divided into three groups: African cichlid, Central and North American Cichlid, and lastly the South American Cichlids. It is in Africa that a capacious array of cichlids that are quite well known to most aquarists and hobbyists are found specifically in the Great Rift Valley region. It has been the cichlids home since 1960's in which time aquarists started learning about these species. This fishes are endemic in lakes, rivers, and streams.
African cichlids are then divided into four more sub-categories basing on the lake in which they live in. We have the Lake Malawi cichlids, Lake Tanganyikan cichlids, Lake Victoria cichlids, and African cichlids. Dwarf cichlids on the other hand are sometimes considered as another special group though technically they belong to the African or American cichlid sub-category. As of today, there are more than 3000 known species and are still increasing significantly as more new species are bred.
Mostly, cichlids inhabit waters that are not yet thoroughly researched by scientists and with a higher possibility that some of the cichlids will become extinct even before scientists can lay their hands on them. This is may be because of the introduction of new fish food in the African lakes that greatly disturbed the ecosystem.
More cichlid information is that cichlids have adapted an expansive range of habitats which makes their degree of specialization so outstanding. This would also affect the behavior of every variety making some of them harder or more difficult to keep in aquariums compared to other varieties. The mere fact that some of these fishes grew unpredictably huge making them inappropriate and unpractical for aquarium keeps. So far the largest known cichlid reached the size of 50 - 100 centimeters, quite big huh?
This particular large species is the Boulengerochromis microlepis which is also the opposite of the Dwarf cichlid in the Apistogramma group which is the smallest of the cichlid variety. It only reaches the size no larger than three centimeters making them very well known to aquarists since it does not require very large aquariums. However, dwarf cichlids are more sensitive to care for compared to their counterparts and crowding them in a small tank is not or never a good idea either.
On the contrary to most beliefs, dwarf cichlids are better off in larger aquariums and aquarists may draw a lot of advantages with it too as it is easier for them to maintain water quality. All cichlids share the same anatomic characteristics even if they display different appearance and behavior or temperament. Most fishes have small intestines that make stomach located at the right side but for cichlids their stomach are at the left side and are equipped with more than one nostril. This also goes true with Damselfishes. Furthermore, there is an intriguing and unique cichlid information about their feature and that is they have teeth in both the upper and lower jaw as well as in the throat.
Lacey Bryant is a cichlid enthusiast and author, who has been caring for cichlids for over 15 years. She has been breeding Cichlids for years and it has become her passion to share her knowledge about their proper care. If you want additional info like peacock cichlids [http://www.cichlidcarecenter.com/peacock-cichlids/] or get a copy of her FREE 'Cichlid Care' mini-course then visit her site Cichlid Care Center [http://www.cichlidcarecenter.com]
Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Lacey_Bryant/716870