Barton Cichlazoma: maintenance and care
Natural habitat Burton cichlomas are rivers, lakes and floodplain areas of southern North America, Central America and the tropics of South America.
Appearance and gender differences
At Burton cichlomas body elongated, flat on the sides. Big head, large eyes with a golden iris, terminal mouth, thick lips. Long dorsal fin. The female and male are easy enough to distinguish from each other. The male is grayish-green with a steep forehead. Indistinct black spots are scattered on the body along the lateral line and at the base of the caudal fin. In the mating season, the male becomes yellow-brown with a green sheen. The female is completely different: the forehead and upper body (about one third) are silver-white, and the lower velvety black. During spawning, the body of this aquarium fish turns black. The male shows a sharp small vas deferens, and the female has a cone-shaped, rather large and obtuse ovipositor at the end. Females are much smaller than males. In nature, fish reaches 25 cm, in captivity much less.
Burton cichlazomas become sexually mature at the age of 11-12 months. At this time, females have a size of about 7 cm, and males up to 10 cm.
Spawning can take place both in the general and spawning aquarium. To preserve offspring and for greater peace of fish, a separate spawning aquarium of at least 80 liters is preferable. It is necessary to place large stones in it. Clay pots laid to one side act as a substrate.
Spawning is stimulated by increasing the water temperature to 29-30 ° C, its hardness to 15-30 °, as well as more frequent water changes (2 times a week).
In the process of spawning, the female sweeps about 300-450 eggs on the walls of the clay pot or on a wide leaf of the plant. In this form, the eggs are incubated for 2-3 days. After a couple of days, the producers transfer the larvae to small holes dug near the pot, where the fry are about 3-5 days. After this period, the fry begin to swim and eat. At this time, parents relentlessly follow the fry, protecting them from the attacks of other fish, if any, in the spawning.
Starter feed: live dust and brine shrimp.
Parameters of water for maintenance: 24-28 ° C, dH 15-35 °, pH 7.6-8.2.
Homeland - San Luis Potosi (Mexico).
The length of the cichloma is up to 12 cm.
Color: male gray-green with a black longitudinal stripe, which consists of many irregular-shaped spots. The female's forehead and upper third of the body are silver-white, the rest is black.
Barton's cichlomas are territorial and aggressive. The resulting pair captures about 30 cm. Of an aquarium on which no one is allowed. Neighbors should be large or medium-sized fish, for example, cichlids of the same temperament (not very aggressive).
For maintenance, you need an aquarium with a volume of 100 liters (minimum) with various shelters and floating plants. As I said, shelters (grottoes, stones, etc. should not be sharp, narrow and small).
Everything cichlazoma eats:
- Live feed;
- Frozen food;
- Feed substitutes (granules, flakes);
- Sliced shrimp, fish.
The sociality of Burton's cichlomas
From a very young age, the fish create a pair, forming to some extent a family. They remain loyal to each other throughout their lives, only occasionally leaving their territory for a short time, which they together guard (photo above).
It is very important, when you just bought fish, carefully monitor the creation of pairs. "Love" comes in a few days, and you will notice that the fish sorted out in pairs and divided the territory. If there is too much steam (a small aquarium, and there wasn’t enough legitimate 30 cm for all), then the extra fish must be put out, all the same they will soon be killed to death.
On their territory, the fish will dig the soil with their muzzles, which is why their lips are chubby, they can even gnaw or dig a soil plant.