Common Name: Firemouth
Scientific Name: Thorichthys Meeki, Cichlasoma Meeki
Average Adult Fish Size: 7 inches / 18 cm
Place of Origin: Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama.
Typical Tank Setup: Well rooted plants along with driftwood / bogwood and rock work with some open space. Provide a flat rock such as slate for breeding.
Recommended Minimum Aquarium Capacity: 55 gallon / 220 litre for a pair
Compatibility: Peaceful. Only shows aggression when breeding. It is a cichlid though, and can be unpredictable. Do not house with mouth-sized fish. The best companions are other similarly sized Central and South American cichlids, large Characins, hemichromis, and tilapia.
Temperature: 22 – 28 Deg C / 72 – 82 Deg F
Water Chemistry: ph 6.5 – 8.0, with 7.0 preferred.
Feeding: Omnivorous. Flakes, pellets, frozen foods, and earthworms are taken with relish.
Sexing: The male and female Firemouths Cichlid share similar markings. The male, however, is much brighter and more colorful. As the male of the breed ages, its caudal fin will bend and the outer rays will lengthen. Both the dorsal and anal fins on the male Firemouth are exaggerated and pointed compared to that of the females. Venting is the only sure way to determine the gender of smaller Firemouths though.
Breeding: Firemouths are egg layers. The female spawns 100-500 eggs on carefully cleaned rocks. The fry are protected in pits by both parents. Fry readily accept baby brine shrimp or finely crushed flake food.
Additional Information: An average lifespan for a Firemouth is 15 years, but if very well cared for, this breed can live for much longer.