Kenyi (Metriaclima lombardoi) Cichlid Tank Requirements and Care
The Kenyi cichlid is a freshwater fish whose origin is from Lake Malawi in East Africa. It belongs to the Cichlidae family, and its scientific name is Metriaclima lombardoi. Other names for the Kenyi cichlid include Kenyii, Golden Zebra Cichlid, Blue Kenyi Cichlid, Kennyi, and Lombardoi Cichlid.
Metriaclima lombardoi are incredibly popular among aquarium hobbyists because of their amazing beauty. Females Kenyi Cichlids are blue, while males have a vivid yellow color. Both the male and female have faded dark vertical stripes on their bodies. If you are an experienced aquarium hobbyist, the Kenyi Cichlid is perfect for you. Learn more below about the Kenyi cichlid and how to care for them.
How Big do Kenyi Cichlids Get
When growing in the wild, a Kenyi cichlid size can extend up to 5 inches in length but can grow larger in an aquarium. If you provide the fish with the most suitable conditions in the aquarium, they can be as big as 6 inches long with an elongated and muscular body.
Are Kenyi Cichlids Aggressive
Yes, the Kenyi cichlid can be very aggressive and are also territorial. If you place other small fish in the same tank as the Kenyi, expect some aggression. The Kenyi cichlid will likely chase and attack the small fish until they kill them. Also, the males are more aggressive than the females.
If you place several males in the same tank, there will be more aggression because of the Kenyi cichlids’ territorial nature. To reduce aggression in an aquarium, have only one male and a group of females.
You can also have other aggressive Malawi Cichlids in the same tank as the Kenyi cichlid. It will help reduce overall aggression and suppress territorial tendencies to an extent. The fish’s high aggression levels make it unideal for a beginner.
How do You Tell the Difference Between a Male and Female Kenyi Cichlid
Telling the difference between a female and male Kenyi cichlid is relatively easy. The main distinguishing element is their color. In the juvenile stage, the female and male Kenyi cichlids’ color is pale blue with dark vertical stripes.
The clear difference between the sexes arises when the Kenyi becomes adults. An adult male’s color will turn bright and vivid yellow with faded vertical black bars. On the other hand, a full-grown Kenyi cichlid female will be brilliant blue with black vertical bars.
What do Kenyi Cichlids Eat
In the wild, the Kenyi cichlids are omnivorous, and their diet primarily consists of algae, invertebrates, tiny zooplankton, crustaceans, and plankton. However, fish can consume frozen or live brine shrimps, pellets, spirulina, and high-quality flake in an aquarium.
In addition, Kenyi cichlids can enjoy daphnia, bloodworms, and live feeder guppies. You can give the fish supplements, such as peas, zucchini, and spinach, for healthy growth. If you consider giving vegetables to your cichlid, ensure they are soft, as hard ones are not safe for consumption.
Adding vitamins and supplements to your fish food can be beneficial to their health. However, provide a balanced diet when feeding your fish, as too much protein can lead to digestive problems. A balanced diet will allow your cichlids to maintain their stunning color.
For the feeding program, provide the food with several small feedings daily. Feeding should be done in small sizes at regular intervals throughout the day. This practice is necessary as it will help maintain the water quality.
What Size Tank for Kenyi Cichlids
The fish have an aggressive nature. Therefore, experts recommend a large tank size to help reduce aggression. The minimum Kenyi cichlid tank size should be at least 50 gallons for one male and several females.
If you intend to include other tank mates, have a larger tank. The larger tanks will ensure that your fish have enough room for bottom exploration. It will also enhance their health and keep them happy.
Apart from the tank size, other tank requirements to keep in mind include the following:
- Have a variety of hiding places, such as caves in the tank. The caves will provide your Lombardoi cichlid with an area where they can spawn and pair. They will also ensure that the habitat resembles the natural wild.
- Fill the bottom with rocks together with a sand cushion. The cushion will allow the male cichlid to dig and create a nest.
- For the water pH, let it be between 7.8 and 8.6 and have a temperature of 70 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit. The conditions in the tank should mimic Lake Malawi.
- Make sure to clean the water in the tank regularly.
What are Good Kenyi Cichlid Tank Mates
The Kenyi cichlid is not a popular community fish because of its aggressive nature. However, you can place one male and several females in one tank. Note that having more than one male Kenyi cichlid in the same tank can be very dangerous, and aggression can result in death.
Also, placing the cichlid with other smaller fish can cause a lot of aggression in the tank. Despite the high levels of aggression, some aquarist experts recommend having other Mbuna fish of different colors and families in the same tank as the Kenyi cichlid.
Some of the compatible Kenyi cichlid tank mates include the following:
- Polit Cichlid
- Demasoni Cichlid
- Red Zebra Cichlid
- Blue Socolofi Cichlid
- Snow-White Cichlid
- Bumblebee Cichlid
Avoid overcrowding to prevent territory formation if you decide to have tank mates in a community tank. Also, introduce all the fish simultaneously and don’t place peaceful cichlids with the Kenyi cichlids in the same aquarium.
Generally, the incompatible tank mates are crabs, snails, shrimps, and peaceful cichlids. Also, the Kenyi cichlid can be aggressive to slow eaters and swimmer tank mates.
What is the Best Place to Buy Kenyi Cichlids
At Live Fish Direct, we are one of the best places to buy tropical fish. We are one of the largest tropical fish farms outside Florida. You can find Kenyi cichlids for sale from our online store along with hundreds of other species of freshwater, tropical fish.
With more than 20 years of experience breeding tropical fish, we can ensure you get the highest quality fish from us. Order three or more to save with our bulk rate discounts..