Redhead AKA Quetzal Cichlid (Vieja synspila), Tank-Bred!
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The Redhead Cichlid is an incredibly colorful, larger species that can be an excellent fish for the mixed Central and South American cichlid aquarium!
The Redhead Cichlid (Vieja synspila), also known as the Quetzal Cichlid, is a large Mexican species that matures to striking pastel multi-coloration. Its natural range also extends into Guatemala and Belize. It is a very majestic and rewarding species that is long-lived and worthy of centerpiece display in the large aquarium. It is a robust and moderately aggressive species with plenty of personality and striking coloration. Males typically develop a characteristic nuchal hump.
The Redhead Cichlid will thrive in a large aquarium with a sandy substrate and plenty of refuge as well as open swimming space. It does consume a good deal of plant matter, so artificial plants are a better choice for decor than live plants (if plants are used at all). Like many cichlids, this species is known to sometimes rearrange decor to its liking, so it is necessary to avoid "avalanches" of decorative stones and driftwood. This cichlid has a powerful bite and can be aggressive, so care must be taken in choosing tankmates. Territoriality is typically at its peak during spawning. Due to the eventual adult size of the Redhead Cichlid, it should not be kept with ornamental invertebrates. If spawning is desired, tankmates of other species should be avoided altogether. It should also be noted that the Redhead Cichlid is typically more peaceful with tankmates when it is grown up with them from juvenile age rather than introduced as an adult. Powerful filtration and regular water changes are necessarry for this large species.
Feeding is simple for the unfussy Redhead Cichlid. High-quality dry, frozen, and live meaty foods will all be readily accepted, but plenty of vegetable matter is also necessary since this species is believed to be largely herbivorous in the wild. Quality and variety are the keys to a diet that will ensure that this fish maintains optimal health and coloration.
We are currently offering juvenile specimens of this magnificent fish.
What We Like About This Fish:
- Beautiful pastel multi-coloration as an adult
- Very hardy with plenty of personality
- Possible to breed in the aquarium
- Rather uncommon species
- Potential to be a "centerpiece" fish
RECOMMENDED TANK PARAMETERS:
- Temperature: 79° - 86° F (26° - 30° C)
- pH: 7.0
- KH: 10 - 15 KH
- Minimum tank size: 75-90 gallons for 1 mature adult or pair
- Diet: Omnivorous. A variety of high-quality dry, frozen, and live meaty foods is necessary for optimal health and coloration. Plenty of vegetable matter (blanched spinach, shelled peas, spirulina) is also necessary.
- Social behavior: Congregates loosely in groups as a juvenile. Both males and females can be territorial during spawning.
- Origin: Tank-bred, but indigenous to Mexico, Guatemala, and Belize
- Average adult size: Up to 12 inches (30.5 cm)
- Average purchase size: 2 - 3 inches (5 - 7.5 cm)