There is no doubt that Astatheros macracanthus is a fish for connoisseurs. This 20-25 cm long cichlid is distributed quite widely from southern North America to Guatemala and El Salvador. The species was scientifically described already in 1864, but in the aquarium it has always remained an absolute rarity. The reason is clear: in the normal coloration this cichlid is pretty, but by no means striking. Only those who know how the parents present themselves during breeding – namely almost snow-white with contrasting, pitch-black lateral markings on the hind body and likewise pitch-black lips – will acquire Astatheros macracanthus.
The care of the typical open-breeders with parent family corresponds to that of all Central Americans of the bull class: as large as possible aquaria dampen the aggressiveness. Sand, stones and roots form the main furnishings. Strong filtering provides for hygienic conditions and a varied nutrition (almost everything is eaten, which fits into the mouth, whereby vegetable components are usually hardly touched) let power packages grow up, which let the heart of each cichlid friend beat faster. The water values are of secondary importance, if extremes are avoided.
For our customers: the fish have code 631503 on our stocklist. Please note that we only supply wholesale.
Text: Frank Schäfer, Photos: Frank Schäfer and Marc Kranz