Flavescent Peacock Cichlid (Aulonocara stuartgranti)

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The Flavescent Peacock Aulonocara stuartgranti is widely distributed in Lake Malawi, Africa. It is a moderate to large sized peacock cichlid that can grow between 4.5 to 7.5 inches (11 – 19 cm) in length.  Its common name is derived from the term “flavescent”, which means yellowish or turning yellow, but this species is quite variable in color. It will range from blue to yellow with many colors in-between. Both the size and the coloring of this very attractive species are dependent upon where it is found. The aquarist has quite a choice of colors that can be combined to make a very attractive species show tank.

The Grant’s Peacock Cichlid is another common name for this peacock, reflecting its species name stuartgranti; and by the African people It is known as Ngara Aulonocara. There are a number of other regional common names for it too, such as Cobue, Mdoka, Ngara, and Nkata bay. Then finally with the different colorings dependent on where they are found in the lake, names of each variety are suffixed by its locality. Some of the popular varieties include the Sunshine Peacock or Aulonocara stuartgranti “Maleri”, the Maulana Bicolor Peacock or Aulonocara stuartgranti “Maulana”, the Flametail Peacock or Aulonocara stuartgranti “Ngara” and two in-line bred color forms of the Aulonocara stuartgranti “Chipoka”the German Red Peacock and the Rubin Red Peacock.

Peacock cichlids are members of a very small group of fish from Lake Malawi, Africa. They are placed in the Aulonocara genus which contains only about 28 species, but with many subspecies. They are all very richly colored and very popular with aquarists. The well deserved term “peacock” is derived from their brilliant colorations of blues, reds and yellows.

The Aulonocara cichlids, along with the Utaka Cichlids Copadichromis and other non-Mbuna’s, are members of the Haplochromis group. Haplochromis is a type genus of free-roaming browsers sometimes call “haps” or “happies”. They live in more sandy areas and open waters, and are generally larger cichlids than their Mbuna “rock-dwelling” counterparts. They also are more peaceful cichlids and should not be housed with the highly active and aggressive Mbunas.

Besides their beautiful appearance the Flavescent Peacocks are easy to care for. They make a desirable pet for both beginning and more advanced cichlid aquarists as long as the tank is large enough. Provide open space for swimming along with some caves in which to hide, sleep, or breed. They will eat a meaty diet and have an almost puppy like excitability when being fed, thus adding to their appeal. Frequent water changes will also help in keeping this cichlid. This cichlid has been bred in captivity, and like all Peacocks, true strains are hard to find unless wild caught or from a reputable dealer.


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Video of Flavescent Peacock Cichlid (Aulonocara stuartgranti)


Infographic of Flavescent Peacock Cichlid (Aulonocara stuartgranti)


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