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Rift Lake Cichlids from Lake Malawi, Tanganyika, Victoria, etc.

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Post Sun Jun 05, 2016 9:18 pm
rocksandglass Level 1 Member
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Posts: 14
ALCOLAPIA ALCALICA. Been working with these fish for awhile. They originate from lake Natron in Tanzania. The lake has a very high salinity and can reach over 100 degrees in areas. It is the breeding ground for 2.5 million lesser flamingoes. Thought I would share some photos of my fish. They are not great. Still working on perfecting ISO, F-stop, lighting.... There is not much information out there on these fish. Go on line and search Cichlid News, January 2104 edition. Four pictures are the mouth brooding females, then the awesome male. Male is 3 inches TL.

Post Wed Jun 08, 2016 12:56 am
Passionfish Level 20 Member
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Posts: 12176
Location: apple valley, mn
Thank you for sharing the photos of your fish. See females are mouth brooding. They have more color than reported.

Following is from Anton Lamboj.
Original discovery, 1905, Tilapia alcalica
Alcolapia alcalica, 1999, new combination. Fish derives name from Arabic al qualy meaning calcined ashes (alkaline source) cus (ca) means in or belongs to. alcalica translation would be in alkaline water.

Common name: Natron tilapia.

Distribution all alkaline drainages from Lake Natron found in Kenya and Tanzania. Example: Shompbole swamps of Lake Natron.

Habitat: springs and spring-fed streams around the shore of Lake Natron, rarely observed in the open water. Temperature usually high (about 30-40° C). Habitat substrate is usually sand or layers of detritus. Higher plants are rare to absent. Salinity is very high, pH around 8.0 or higher.

Omnivore: small insects, crustaceans.

Breeding: Males construct small pits. The distance between individual pits are about 60 centimeters. Polyandrous (Several males) female mouth-brooder.

Aquaristics: Easy to keep and to breed, requires a few special settings (temperature, pH), I would just recommend it for rather experienced aquarists. pH should be at least about 8.0. Temperature has to be a bit high, but not as much as in the wild, 28-32° C is fine. Relatively peaceful against conspecifics, congeners, and other cichlids. But as it is a very active, agile species, minimum tank size should be about 150 liters for a group of 2 adult males and about 6-8 adult females. Incubation of eggs and larvae takes about two weeks. Males do not participate in broodcare in any way. Juveniles are best to be separated to another tank after free swimming starts, as usually the mother will not take care of them, but will probably eat the fry.

Conservation: ICUN red list: threatened. As distribution is not a very large and collections for the hobby have not been made since more than 10 years ago, and are not to be expected in the near future, it should be carefully preserved in our aquaria, as far as it is available. This is the only species of the genus available for the hobby at moment.
Like a complete unknown

Post Sat Jan 12, 2019 8:51 am
similis User avatar
Level 5 Member
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Posts: 345
Location: Kewaunee
very cool!
Always looking for rare Tanganyikans.

...Champion of Karate and friendship for everyone.

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