Change of color - Johanni blue

Q&A about cichlids in community tanks

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Change of color - Johanni blue

Post by shaunyappp » Fri Jun 16, 2017 10:47 am

Hi there!

In need of help! I bought a pair of blue johanni with other types of cichlid in total of 7 fishes in my 2x1(60x30cm) feet tank about a month ago. After a week, one of my Blue johanni's sizing about 1.5 inch has developed a sudden change in color and behaviour . He/She suddenly turned pale and super aggressive. I assumed it's a male one instead with his aggressiveness, he started to chase almost the other 6 fishes in an unfriendly manner ! He doesn't like any other fishes which swim near by his territory which is a rock ornament , any fishes which swim pass by will be chased by him and not even a single chance for the others to enter the ornament.

Today, which is after a 3- weeks of pale color bodied, strangely His color is back to its richness and became much friendlier , His territory ; which is the ornament is open to all other fishes again and he's out swimming most of the time now in a much calmer manner. May I know what's the cause of his change of color and behaviour ? I'm loving his current manner as I was rather worried for my other fishes for their health and stress level when he was being such fierce weeks ago.

Thanks a million !
Shaun Yap

Pam Chin
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Re: Change of color - Johanni blue

Post by Pam Chin » Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:45 pm

Hi shaunyappp,

Cichlids can change their colors in a heart beat. It is due to the conditions they are in and what is going on in their environment. Cichlids are very territorial, but the biggest red flag I see in your post is the size of your aquarium. It is way too small for these types of cichlids, so when housed like this anything can happen. Even though your fish are small, this is never going to work. Things may have settled down for a little bit, but it is not going to work long term.

You will need a minimum 55 gal tank for Malawi cichlids.

These fish do not pair off, they breed best in groups. When they are one on one it rarely works out. If you really want to work with the Johanni, then I suggest you do a species only tank, and trade the other fish in and get more Johanni. They will do much better in a group of 10 - 12 fish.

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