Apistogramma Opal Pair

Apistogramma Opal Pair

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Apistogramma borellii

Note: Due to variations within species, your item may not look identical
to the image provided


Apistogramma aequipinnis, A. reitzigi,
Heterogramma borellii, H. ritense, H. rondoni


Wild specimens are known from Argentina, Brazil,
and Paraguay.

Sexual Dimorphism

Males grow larger, are more colourful, and
develop elongated fin rays.

Maximum Size

Males up to 7cm (2.8?), females smaller.

Water Parameters

Soft and slightly acidic. pH:5.5-7.2, dH: up to
15 degrees.


22-25 deg C (72-77 deg F)


Specialist community





In the wild, Apistogramma borelli inhabit slow-moving
shallow creeks and tributaries of the Rio Paraguay and the lower Rio Paran?
basins, and in many places the substrate is composed of leaf litter. This dwarf
cichlid is most noted for its striking colour formations, particularly in the
male fish; the front end of the body is predominantly golden yellow, the flanks
and posterior of the body with striking metallic powder blue undertones, and
the fins gold-tipped. The home aquarium should contain soft, acidic water of
cooler than average temperature (see above), and be well matured before these
fishes are added. Ideally there will be dark substrate and dense planting, with
plenty of hiding places/territories amongst rocks and bogwood. These fish are
not fussy about the appearance of the d?cor, and clean, new terracotta flower
pots and the like will be much appreciated. Floating plant cover could be used
to help diffuse the light. Peat filtration and the addition of Indian Almond
Leaves (Terminalia catappa) would be beneficial to help create the favoured
conditions, and be aware that the tank should have a tight fitting cover, as
these fish can jump. A. borellii are generally peaceful, but can become rather
territorial when breeding. Keep either a single pair, or in larger aquaria, one
male with several females (which will form a harem). The females will seek out
individual territories, hence the importance of many visual barriers within the
tank. Good tankmates include Corydoras catfish, hatchetfish, pencilfish, small
tetras, and suckermouth catfish. Like many of the Apistogramma species, A.
borellii will not tolerate an elevated nitrate level. Regular partial water
changes are an absolute must for the continued wellbeing of this species.
Several tank-bred colour varieties of A. borellii are available, such as ?Opal?
and ?Red Mask?. Often seen on sale as the Umbrella Dwarf Cichlid.



Flake, micropellets, small frozen foods such as bloodworm,
white mosquito larvae, vitamin-enriched brineshrimp and daphnia.



Successful breeding
can be achieved in the home aquarium, although it is moderately difficult. The
water should be very soft and acidic, and the temperature raised to the top end
of their preferred range. Ideally, each female fish will be provided with a
suitable spawning site in the form of a cave or flower pot on its side. Up to
70 eggs will be laid on the ceiling of the cave or pot, and these will be
guarded by the female. The male fish will guard the general harem territory.
The eggs should hatch after 2 to 4 days, depending on water temperature. The
female continues guarding the wrigglers, and after a further few days, will
lead the fry out of the cave. She will be very pugnacious at this point,
fending off any would-be predators. The fry will require frequent small feeds
with appropriately sized foodstuffs at this point, such as baby brineshrimp. If
the spawning has occurred in a general community tank, it is a good idea to
feed the other fish their food at the opposite end of the aquarium at the same
time, to avoid undue stress to the female, who will be desperately trying to
guard her young. Sometimes the female will take the fry up in her mouth and
move them to another area of the tank