Tilapia Sparrmanii

Species Information

Tilapia sparrmanii

Native to Central and Southern Africa: Shaba, Upper Kasaï, Upper Dwango, Upper Cuanza, Cunene, Okavango, L. Ngami, Zambezi, Limpopo, Sabi, Lundi, n. tributaries of the Orange R., L. Malawi, Bangweulu and Moero.

Known as the Banded tilapia or the Peacock Cichlid.

The highlights shown in the dorsal fin are pale iridescent blue, tipped with red. The fin also has an interesting spot. Body color, olive, overlaid with rapidly changing dark patterns.

The generic name Tilapia is usually associated with mouth-breeding Cichlids. As T. sparrmanii are not mouthbreeders,we again point out that breeding habits have little, if anything, to do with scientific classification.

Adults feed preferentially on filamentous algae, aquatic macrophytes and vegetable matter of terrestrial origin (leaves, plants, etc.). Juveniles feed small crustaceans and midge larvae.

They breed like other large Cichlids, such as A portalegrensis, but are more temperamental as to fighting and also as to eating their young. Easily spawned, and may turn out very large families or none at all. They are safest kept either singly or with large numbers of their own kind. Not suited to a community tank.

Length, 5 inches.

Water, pH range: pH range: 7.0; dH range: 10.0, temperature 65-85 degrees.

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