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Introducing the Exquisite Textilus Cichlid (Labidochromis joanjohnsonae), also known as Exasperatus!
Scientific Name: Labidochromis joanjohnsonae
Trade Name: Exasperatus
Discover the enchanting world of the Textilus Cichlid, a captivating species that hails from the renowned Lake Malawi. With its striking colors, unique behaviors, and fascinating history, the Textilus Cichlid is a prized addition to any freshwater aquarium.
Vibrant Beauty: The Textilus Cichlid showcases remarkable coloration that evolves as it matures. Juveniles and females boast stunning orange-brown longitudinal stripes, while males undergo a mesmerizing transformation, turning into breathtaking creatures with iridescent blue bodies adorned with dark bars in their dorsal and anal fins.
Scientific Wonder: Also known as Exasperatus, this cichlid has an intriguing scientific history. Its initial description faced challenges due to misidentification, but subsequent taxonomic revisions clarified its place in the Labidochromis genus. This journey through taxonomy adds an extra layer of fascination to the Textilus Cichlid.
Lake Malawi Endemism: The Textilus Cichlid is native to the crystal-clear waters of Lake Malawi, specifically found around Likoma Island. However, it’s essential to note that an introduced population can be found on Thumbi West Island in the southern part of the lake. Its natural habitat comprises rocky areas in waters less than 2.5 feet deep, making it a true rock-dwelling marvel.
Behavior and Breeding: These cichlids exhibit fascinating behaviors in both their natural habitat and aquarium settings. They are maternal mouth-brooders, with males attracting females through unique courtship displays. After successful courtship, females carry their eggs and young in their mouths, ensuring their safety during early development.
Conservation Status: The Textilus Cichlid is classified as “Vulnerable” (VU) on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (2006). Conservation efforts are crucial to protect this remarkable species and its habitat.
Aquarium Care: Textilus Cichlids are a popular choice among aquarium enthusiasts, particularly those interested in African cichlids. They are relatively adaptable to aquarium conditions, but maintaining water parameters similar to Lake Malawi (alkaline pH of 8.2, moderately hard water) is essential. A tank of at least 50 gallons is suitable for a small group, although larger tanks are preferred for a community setup.
Feeding: These cichlids are known for their invertebrate-picking behavior, darting among algae to find their prey. In captivity, they accept a variety of foods, with a herbivorous diet being ideal to prevent obesity.
Capture the Magic: Whether you’re an experienced aquarist or a newcomer to the world of cichlids, the Textilus Cichlid, or Exasperatus, is sure to captivate your heart. Its vibrant colors, intriguing history, and engaging behaviors make it a living work of art in your freshwater aquarium.
Elevate your aquatic world with the magnificent Textilus Cichlid, and witness the beauty and wonder of Lake Malawi’s aquatic treasures in the comfort of your own home.