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The Red Fin Kadango Copadichromis borleyi (previously Haplochromis borleyi) is a fish with many desirable traits as an aquarium pet. One of its greatest assets is that it is relatively peaceful, only becoming territorial during spawning time. This makes it an especially good fish for the aquarist who wants to house different types Lake Malawi cichlids.
They are Utaka cichlids from Lake Malawi, Africa. Utaka are fish that live in the open water and feed on zooplankton, tiny planktonic crustaceans drifting on slight currents in the water column. The Utaka is currently comprised of only two slightly varying genera, the Copadichromis and the Mchenga, both of which share this distinctive feeding ecology. These are one of the largest Utakas and are found in both shallow or deep waters.
One of the most interesting things about these fish is that they will form large shoals. These are one of the largest Utakas and are found in both shallow or deep waters. The Haplochromis Borleyi Redfins mostly live near large boulders or near rocky islets set on the sand. The shoals can contain just a few fish or thousands of fish, and are often made up of more than one species.
This shoaling behavior is distinctly different than the Mbuna, or rock-dwelling cichlids, that are aggressively territorial of their piece of rock. These fish are often found over the same rock piles as Mbuna cichlids, but they are larger than the Mbuna, They were once categorized as Haplochromis. Other closely related open-water cichlids include the Haplochromine cichlids like the favorite Haps of the Haplochromis genus and the pretty Peacock Cichlids of the Aulonocara genus.
With their nice personality they will also school in the community cichlid aquarium. They are easy to care for as long as the tank is large enough. The water does need to be kept clean and the aquascaping also needs to be correct. The males are not as hard on the females as other Malawi cichlids can be. They are actually very gentle if there are at least 3 or more females kept in the tank. Though they are easy to breed, avoid cross breeding with similar cichlids to keep the strains pure.
They are available in several color varieties, which provides lots of choices to compliment your collection. They are called “Red Fin” because the females and juveniles have red or orangish fins that contrasted with their dark silver bodies. But the colors vary naturally depending on the geographic region they originate from. In all cases the males are more brightly colored than females.
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Video of Red Fin Kadango (Copadichromis borleyi)
Infographic of Red Fin Kadango (Copadichromis borleyi)
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