Tricolor Fulu – Neochromis Omnicaeruleus

neochromis_omnicaeruleus

Common name: Tricolor Fulu

Scientific name: Neochromis Omnicaeruleus

Average Adult Fish Size: 12 cm / 5 inches

Place of Origin: Lake Victoria

Typical Tank setup: Rocky Victoria tank

Recommended Minimum Aquarium Capacity: 55 gallons / 220 Litres

Compatibility: Keep with other aggressive Victorians. Males should be kept with a harem size of 3 or more females.

Temperature: 24-27 Deg C / 74-80 Deg F

Water chemistry:  pH 7.2-8.4 with 8.0 being ideal

Feeding:  Omnicaeruleus are omnivorous. Feed spirulina-based flake food or the appropriate sized pellet supplemented with fresh green vegetables such as romaine lettuce and spinach. Frozen or fresh brine shrimp can be fed as an occasional treat.

Sexing: Males tend to have better coloration; grow at a faster rate; and will display their adult coloration sooner than the females. Male coloration is also often more bold than females’ because they like to show it off when courting females. Adult males will also tend to have a deeper body, whereas females appear more slim and streamlined. While these characteristics may help an experienced hobbyist, venting is the only sure way to determine gender with Neochromis species.

Breeding: As with most African Cichlids,  Omnicaeruleus will readily breed in an aquarium, provided good water quality, and nutrition are given. The males will try to lure ripe females to a spot in the aquarium they have picked out. They do this by flashing their brilliant breeding dress and they shake and shimmy their body for the female. They usually remove any sand or gravel to make a smooth spot for the female to drop her eggs. The male will then fertilize the eggs as the female picks them up. A medium sized piece of slate works well and will keep them from digging all the way down to the glass bottom of your tank. Females should be removed after breeding. Omnicaeruleus are a mouth brooding cichlid. This means the female holds the eggs in her mouth until the fry has developed and is ready to be released. It typically takes about 15 days (more or less) for the female to release the fry. At this time the fry are fully developed and ready to eat very finely crushed foods, or baby brine shrimp (bbs).

Additional Information: Even though  Haplochromis species are hearty, keeping them is not without challenges. Omnicaeruleus are one of the many colorful fish from Lake Victoria. If you find them, as with all Victorian species, please be sure and breed them as they are on the edge of being threatened in the wild because of pollution and the introduction of the Nile Perch, which are rapidly eating all the fish in Lake Victoria.

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