The History of the Cichlid Fish

If you are lookin for some general cichlid info then you have come to the right place, this page will cover some history and background of the cichlid fish. The family Cichlidae, that the cichlid fish come from is definitely a large fish  family  that live in a multitude of different conditions in all different parts of the world.

The information available on the different  species has evolve to the point that you can now follow a particular type back to the point it originally developed and in doing so you can see how they differ considerably with regards to size, character, feeding methods, favored water conditions and so on.

Aquarium enthusiasts generally separate the cichlid varieties into 3 primary groups:

  1. African Cichlids
  2. North American Cichlids
  3. South American Cichlids

The biggest known cichlid varieties may achieve the size of 50-100 centimeters. Then you have the smallest cichlids , the dwarf cichlid within the Apistrogramma group,  which never grows any bigger than three centimeters.

These smaller cichlids can in fact benefit greatly from having a bigger aquarium, as it makes it much easier for the hobbyist to maintain the water quality inside a tank with lots of water, therefore the fish benefit from much more consistent water conditions.

Cichlids are a second division fresh water fish but the ancestors of the modern cichlid fish once upon a time used to be marine fish. In the course of history they have managed to adapt and migrate to fresh water.

Just about all cichlid fish are egg layers and can be put within 2 common categories regarding their reproduction methods. One type will  brood their eggs within their mouths, generally this is practiced by the female species. The other type lay their eggs on some kind of substrate such as a rock,  some timber and even on sand.

A few varieties will probably abandon their hatchlings on birth yet others may nurture their young for many months and then abandon them.

Cichlid Background

Cichlid fish are found in many exotic as well as subtropical locations around the globe. From the southern area of Texas southward throughout South and Central America towards the north areas of Argentina and the southern area of Uruguay.

They are often observed upon many of the Caribbean Islands. Next there’s Africa, Syria, Israel, The southern area of Iran , Madagascar, India as well as Sri Lanka.

Individual types continue to be identified at an increasing rate, with a minimum of 20 brand new varieties identified every year. Up to now there’s been some 2000 varieties recognized and identified to man, with many different researchers believing there might be equally as many still that need be identified.

Cichlid fish initially grew to become fashionable aquarium fish in 1945. Aquarium lovers discovered the group ideal for household fish tanks due to their sizing and because they ended up being simple to feed and also bred readily, taking care of their own brood even in captivity.

An additional fascinating fact is that cichlid fish possess the teeth both in the top and the lower jaw,  as well as in the throat. Cichlid fish are a member of the order Perciformes that posses 2 pharyngeal bones in the form that connect by a row of teeth that run down into their throat.

Their popularity continues to grow especially with the many hybrid types that are now available and they are loved due to their spectacular physical appearance, robustness as an aquarium fish that are easy to maintain, feed, as well as reproduce.
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