Malawi Eyebiter: How To Breed Predatory Cichlid, Dimidochromis Compressiceps

Dimidochromis compressiceps photos

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Dimidochromis compressiceps young adult pictured.

  • Common Names: Malawi Eyebiter
  • Locations Collected From: Chizumulu Island, and Cobue in Mozambique.
  • Approximate Size: 10 – 12 inches with females slightly smaller.
  • Food: Not picky. Will eat a wide variety of foods everything from flake to pellet to frozen and live foods(brine shrimp and mosquito larvae).  They will hunt smaller fish.
  • Water Conditions: Likes temperatures between 75 –  82 degrees F and pH between 7.5 and 9+.
  • Breeding Behavior: Mouthbrooder.  Males can be very aggressive towards females.  It is better to have 1 male and several females per male per tank.  They like a lot of rocks in their aquarium.  Male Dimidochromis compressiceps in the aquarium are a deep blue color while males in the Lake are a Golden Yellow color.  Soon after Wild males are taken out of the lake and put into the aquarium they lose their Golden Yellow coloration and turn the deep Blue color.   Nobody has been able to figure out if this change has to do with water conditions in the aquarium or something that is lacking in the diets of captive Dimidochromis compressiceps causing them to lose their natural breeding coloration.
  • Tankmates: Can be kept with most Malawi Cichlids although dwarf species and smaller Mbuna are not recommended.   I’ve kept mine in with Nimbochromis venustus, Labeotropheus fuelleborni, Iodotropheus sprengerae “Rusty”, and Melanochromis joanjohnsonae “Exasperatus”.  I have seen them kept with Labidochromis caeruleus, Psuedotropheus zebras (OB and Red), Nimbochromis livingstoni, Melanochromis chipokae, and Melanochromis auratus.

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