Scientific name: Aequidens Pulcher.
Common name: Blue Acara.
Size: - 8-9 inches (approx. 20-25 cm).
Distribution: Venezuela, Columbia and Panama.
Water Type: Freshwater Tropical.
Temperature: 76 - 82°F (24 - 28°C).
ph: 6.5- 7.6.
Minimum Tank Size: 30 - 40 gallons (115 - 150 liters).
Strata: This cichlid uses all strata's of the aquarium but is mostly a low to mid strata dweller.
Tank setup: It's natural habitat being rivers and streams both sandy and gravel substrates are accepted. The species enjoys some cover for retreat in the form of rock or driftwood caves and structures. Being a cichlid that enjoys digging in the substrate live plants may be uprooted and prove difficult to maintain.
Temperament: This is often said to be one of the more peaceful and accepting species of new world cichlid however it will still bully tankmates if in competition for territory, food, or at times of spawning.
Compatibility: Ideally this species should be kept with fellow new world cichlids of a similar size and temperament. They will however accept some types of hardy non-cichlid (dither type) tankmates and most armored species of catfish. Some possible cichlid tankmates may include fish such as Firemouths, Convicts, Severums or Port Acara.
Feeding: As with most cichlid species a varied diet is recommended. They will accept pellet and flake foods, crustaceans, worms, insects, insect larvae, algae, plant matter, vegetables, fish and many white or very lean red meats.
Sexing: The male in this species is generally larger as an adult and often displays trailing extensions of the dorsal and anal fins. Males may also display a more dominant orange lining along the top of the dorsal fin.
Breeding: This is a fairly prolific species and can produce large quantities of offspring per spawning. No specific water parameters are needed to induce spawning however frequent water changes may help to condition the fish. They are said to be an open spawner however will often choose a cave or sheltered area in the home aquarium. Parental care is shared by both parents and may be up to 6-8 weeks.
General Information: This is a fairly easy cichlid to maintain and is suitable for the beginner to advanced hobbiest. This species is often confused when juvenile with Green Terror (Aequidens rivulatus) or Port Acara (Aequidens portalegrensis) and is also known to hybridize with both these species.