So how did my cichlid addiction begin and why are cichlids anything other then a normal slimy, scaley fish better dead and in the cooking pot then alive in a stream you may ask.  After all, A fish in the pot is better then two in the water right??? I must admit that some people still think that, and continue eating they’re fried oscars and peacock bass’s 😦  Anyway looking at a cichlid when your hungry is just wrong so grab a bite to eat and then read the rest. 

There are subtle differences that help ID a cichlid from the rest of fish.

1: Dorsal fin, in almost all cichlids the dorsal fin starts a little behind the eye on the crest of the back. The fin usually continues connected untill almost touching the caudal fin (tail fin) Though there are other some fishes that have the same type of fin and are not cichlids (bluegill and sunfish for example) this is the easiest, at a glance way to identify a cichlid and unless you live in places where there are no cichlids it ussually helps. peacock bass look like theyre dorsal fin is interrupetd but it is not so. Peacock bass are cichlids unlike north american largemouth and smallmouth bass.

2: one of the surest external way of IDing a cichlid is the interrupted lateral line. the only fish with an interupted latteral line is a type of african tetra. You can usually see the interrupted lines if you look carefully on the side of the fish.

3 except some fish that are being prepared for eating by the locals, as far as i know ALL cichlids have scales, rather tiny or large.

4 All cichlids have 7 fins, the dorsal (the fin on its back), the caudal fins (tail fins), the anal fin (under the tail), the pair of ventral fins (under the body and close to the gills, and lastly the pectoral fins (the translucent fins on either side of the body behind the gills.

Cichlids are personable fish to. Oscars commonly beg for food, large parachromis will attack and bite your hand, the jack dempsey will show larger fish whos boss, the taeniacaras are little fish with big personalities and the tiny apistogramma will constantly flare up at other fish and then look at you through those huge eyes and seem to smile. cichlids are the best fish in the world. There is everything from discus babies who suck slime from their parents, to tilapia that after enticing the femal to a pit he has dug and spawning with her holds the eggs in his mouth. cichlids are a crazy group, one that deserves all the attention they get, and more. 

Check out the profiles and Keeping S/A american cichlids for more info.


6 responses »

  1. Live Cichlids…

    I’m impressed, I have to admit. Rarely do I come across a blog – What kind of cichlids can be put into a 10 gallon aquarium? that’s equally educative and interesting, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head. The problem is something to…

  2. David says:

    Thanks alot!

  3. Hudson says:

    Feel free to use any pictures you wish!

  4. Hi,

    I am a board member of the nordic cichlid association and I was wondering if I can use your pictures of fish for our species register, of course always with your name attached as photographer! I need your full name though!

    Check out our site here:

    I am currently focusing on Apistogrammas and I wish to sho woff all cool species to support the hobby in best possible way. Our website is free for all. Checkout our Apistogramma overview:

    Best regards,
    David Rejdemyhr

  5. I enjoyed reading this a lot…

    I really hope to read more of your posts in the future, so I’ve bookmarked your blog. But I couldn’t just bookmark it, oh no.. When I see quality website’s like this one, I like to share it with others So I’ve created a backlink to your site (from …

  6. The Fredericks says:

    Hudson’s world is awesome!! Ü We got to see your fish yesterday (2/25/09). See you when you get back from the jungle!

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