Scientific name: Herichthys pearsei
Common name: Pantano cichlid
Usual size in fish tanks: 19 - 22 cm (7.48 - 8.66 inch)
Recommended pH range for the species: 7.2 - 8
Recommended water hardness (dGH): 4 - 15°N (71.43 - 267.86ppm)
0°C 32°F30°C 86°F
Recommended temperature: 24 - 28 °C (75.2 - 82.4°F)
The way how these fish reproduce: Spawning
Where the species comes from: Central America
Temperament to its own species: peaceful
Temperament toward other fish species: aggressive to smaller
Usual place in the tank: Middle levels
Central America; Pantano cichlids are to be found in the water ways of Guatemala and Mexico.
The expected life span for Herichthys pearsei is 10 years.
Herichthys pearseiin a large tank to allow for plenty of swimming space. Some specimens will grow quite large but compared to wild specimens, tank bred specimens tend to be smaller when fully mature. Like all of the large cichlids, they are high waste producers so a filter should be used that can cope with the amount of waste produced. This will need to be backed up with regular water changes on a weekly basis. Unlike most of the large cichlids though, they are a very peaceful species so can be housed with other peaceful species of a similar size as long as their tank mates are suitable for hard water conditions.
A very basic aquarium set up is required, use sand for the substrate and add a few rocks for decor, this will also aid keeping the tank clean if a simplistic layout is used.They will nibble at their food throughout the day so give them time to consume what they need.
Food and feeding
Pantano cichlid needs vegetable matter in its diet. They have a small mouth so if feeding with cichlid pellets, use the smaller sized ones or feed with an algae based flake. They will often feed from any algae growing on tank ornaments as well.
Females grow smaller than the males; the males may also develop a nuchal hump.
Pantano cichlids are a very easy fish to breed and the fry are very hardy when it comes to raising them. You will need to be patient initially, the best approach is to buy a group of juveniles as this will ensure getting both sexes for the breeding project. As they mature a natural pair will bond and the other specimens can then be moved on allowing the paired fish to assume the spawning process. It is best to breed these fish in a separate breeding tank away from other distracting tank mates, even though they are classed as a peaceful species they will defend their spawning sites with some vigour.Pairs will be formed and the fish will start digging out pits in the substrate in preparation for spawning. Add flat rocks for the eggs to be laid on a do regular water changes to prepare the tank water. Both parents are excellent at their job and will tend the eggs until hatching. When the fry are free swimming they can be fed on newly hatched brine shrimp.