Above: In the picture a gorgeous young male premium quality Electric Lemon Yellow Cichlid is swimming in one of our aquariums, when one of us snapped this picture.
Origin: Electric Yellows are NOT Mbunas, which is a large family of Cichlid fish that originally lived only in Lake Malawi in East Africa.
Most experts thought they were Mbunas, but they are Labidochomis, which DNA analysis has recently shown are not Mbunas.
This came a a great surprise to many experts, but aquarist that kept Labidochromis in aquariums and watched them carefully were not surprised. In fact some aquarists had predicted that Labidochromis were quite different from the Mbunas.
Labidochromis are native to Lake Malawi but are more closely related to some of the cichlid fish that live in the rivers that flow into Lake Malawi.
Now that may seem like something that would only interest scientists, working in colleges and universities. But it probably explains to aquarists, why this fish species is so much less aggressive than Mbunas.
Because Labidochromis are much milder fish than Mbunas, they are more popular and live in aquariums all over the world.
Maximum Size: In aquariums, Electric Yellows can grow to be about 4" long, including their tails, which is a very nice size for aquariums.
Behaviors: Electric Yellows are usually not too aggressive, but from time to time males have long energetic battles.
Compatibility: Some recommended tank mates include, some less aggressive Mbuna such as Fuelleborni and Trewavasae, and Synodontis Catfish.
Click here for more about Synodontis Catfish.
Click here to read more about compatible groups of pet fish.
Temperature: like all fish from Lake Malawi, they live best from about 75 to 80-degrees F. with 78 being perhaps ideal.
Click here to learn about aquarium temperature, aquarium thermometers, and aquarium heaters.
Feeding: Premium Fish Food Pellets is best. Smaller sized pellets, when these fish are small, and larger sized pellets, when they grow bigger.
Click here to learn more about and shop online for premium fish foods.
Water Conditions: Lake Malawi has hard alkaline water and that is best for all the fish like these, whose ancestors lived there.
But these fish can adapt to most types of water in the US, and so as usual it's best not to try to change the pH or hardness.
Click here for a lot more information about aquarium water conditions.
Aquarium Size: These Electric Yellows will eventually need to live in an aquarium with at least 80-gallons of water.
Each Labidochromis will need at least 3-gallons of water, and like Mbunas they live best in an aquarium with at least 15 other Electric Yellows of about the same size.
Decor: Labidochromis do not need gravel, and a layer of gravel more than 1/4" thick will usually fill with bits of uneaten food that will contaminate the water.
Click here for more about aquarium gravel.
Live plants are beautiful and improve the water quality, but Labidochromis are diggers and will usually dig plants up, so most aquariums with Labidochromis do not have live plants.
Labidochromis like this one love rocks and rocky caves.
Aquarium Filter: Bio-Wheel Filters are highly recommended. Most 80-gallon aquariums have room along the back for two Penguin 350B Filters, and this is sort of a minimal set up.
Better is a 100, 120, or 150-gallon aquarium with as many Penguin 350B Filters as will fit across the back.
Click here to learn more about aquarium filters.
The addition of Lava Rocks will keep nitrates in the ideal range.
Click here to learn more about using Lava Rocks in aquariums.
Life Span: These fish can live for several years.
Keep the water conditions excellent and feed them premium foods, and they will most likely live for many years, breed, and produce the next generation of fish for your aquarium.
Gender: It's difficult to tell males from females, when they're small, but easy when they are mature.
The males become a brighter yellow, while the female usually gets plumper as she fills with eggs.
Breeding: Electric Yellows are mouthbrooders. A female lays eggs, a male fertilizes the eggs, and the female picks up the eggs in her mouth.
She will brood them in her mouth for about 3-weeks, and then release them in the aquarium. They are miniature versions of their parents and very cute!
Click here to read more about breeding mouthbrooders.
Click here for a lot more about breeding various tropical fish in aquariums.
Popularity: Since the 1960s Electric Yellows have been very popular aquarium fish.
Names: The scientific name for Electric Yellow is Labidochromis caeruleus.
Variations: There are some variations of the Electric Yellow Cichlid in Lake Malawi. In particular there are variations with and without a black horizontal band through the top fin, and there is a less colorful variation that is white.
We hope you've enjoyed reading these comments.
DrTom - 01/29/2015
We have 380-aquariums with lots-and-lots of popular aquarium fish plus lots-and-lots of rare fish!
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All of our fish are Premium Quality Fish from the best suppliers in the world. Our fish have better health, more energy and brighter colors, as you can see in our pictures on this website.
We also offer lots and lots of information about keeping pet fish, all from the knowledge of the Bailey Brothers, who have a combined total of 100+ years of experience as breeders, wholesalers, and retailers of pet fish!
Our fish and our customers are treated with the best of care, and we work energetically everyday to make sure every customer enjoys their new fishy friends.
When you purchase pet fish from us, you know you're receiving premium quality fish and premium quality service.
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This website is owned and operated by the Bailey Brothers, DrTom and Nevin, who've been together in the fish business for more than 50-years.
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