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Melanochromis Auratus - Golden Mbuna - Lake Malawi Cichlids

Discussion in 'Livestock' started by eggo, Jul 13, 2012.

  1. eggo

    eggo Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire
    Livestock: Melanochromis auratus approx 1"
    Age and condition: They were spit naturally on the 16th may
    Quantity for sale: 15-20
    Reason for Sale: To many
    Delivery or Collection: Collection
    Sales price: £2.50 each
    Postage & Packaging: N/A
    Location: Doncaster
    Photograph:
    [​IMG]

    Common name:
    Auratus, Malawi Golden cichlid



    Distribution:
    Africa, The southwestern shore of lake Malawi



    General Body Form:
    The Auratus has a general elongated appearance. The profile of the dorsal area is more curved in than the belly area. The anal and dorsal fins end in a round shape. They do not reach the tail area. The caudal fin is somewhat triangular in shape with a concave end. Females are smaller than males.


    Coloration:
    The Auratus have two distinct coloration patterns differentiating the sexes. The females body is a golden yellow. She has a series of three Black to brown stripes running lengthwise down the body. These are fringed by White strips. The bands are separated with the Golden color of the body. The fins are also yellow in color. The upper part of the tail fin and the dorsal fin have black markings on them, with the tips being highlighted in Red. The male is completely different in color. His body is Black to brown in color. He has a Yellow stripe edged in white running the length of his body. The males fins are very dark Brown fringed in White. The top of his body is a mustard color which is followed up through the dorsal fin. The upper part of his tail fin has pale yellow spot. Looking at these fish you would not think that they are the same species. Another interesting aspect of the auratus is the fry have the female coloration, regardless of their sex. At around 2 inches or so, they become adults and the males change their colour, only if no other dominant male is present. If the father or other male is around, they will keep the fry-female coloration for a bit longer. When purchased and brought home, with no other male to intimidate them, they will become black. And that's all.



    Maintenance:
    Melanochromis auratus is an aggressive fish and intolerant of others in its territory. The set up should be a typical Lake Malawi biotope. Provide plenty of rockwork and caves with hard alkaline water with a pH of at least 7.5. The bottom substrate should be of a material that will aid in the pH buffering capabilities of the water. Good substrate choices could be Dolomite or crushed coral to aid in buffering the water. Tankmates should be from the same area and be able to fend off their attentions. Feeding is not difficult as they will accept all types of flake frozen or live. In their home territory they would graze of the algae covered rocks called Aufwuchs, so it is important to supplement with food containing spirulina and this should be given regularly.

    Biotope:
    The rubble and rocky area of lake Malawi.



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