Electric yellow cichlid

The Electric yellow cichlid, Labidochromis caeruleus, is a freshwater perciform fish, a cichlid. It is also known as Lemon yellow lab, the Blue streak hap, the Electric yellow African, and is called the Yellow prince in the Philippines. It is endemic to the northern coastal region of Lake Malawi, especially the Lion’s Cove & Nkhata Bay areas, in East Africa. It has become a popular commercial fish for aquarium enthusiasts.

Their bodies are strikingly bright yellow, with males having dark black streaks on their dorsal, pelvic, and ventral fins. While specimens kept by aquarists are generally bright yellow with black markings, specimens from different areas of Lake Malawi exhibit different coloring. In fact their quality is determined mostly on appearance, with brighter yellow, less white and minimal appearance of the bars along their broad side making a better cichlid. Males and females are sexually monomorphic with most males exhibiting black ventral fins and broader black dorsal stripe; though the best way to determine their gender would require examining their vents, while behavior can provide reliable hints (females tend to be smaller and less aggressive). In their natural habitat, electric yellow grow to about 3.54 in (9 cm) in length, and have been known to reach 5.91 in (15 cm) in captivity.

This species is a mouthbrooder, meaning the larvae are carried, hatch, and develop in the mother’s mouth (buccal cavity), for about three weeks. These fish are ovophiles and the male will excavate a pit in the sand within his territory, in which the female lays the eggs; the female then takes these eggs into her mouth for fertilization.

Electric yellows come from a tropical climate and prefer freshwater with a pH between 7.8 and 8.9 and an ideal temperature range of 73″“78 °F (23″“26 °C). Spawning may be triggered by a drop in temperature which in their nature climate normally indicates in an influx of rain into Lake Malawi.

Electric yellows are peaceful compared to most other African cichlids. Despite this, like all cichlids from Lake Malawi they are best kept in specialist cichlid aquariums. When kept with freshwater community aquarium species such Zebra Danios or Neon Tetras, they may nip the fins of other species, and are not recommended for freshwater community aquariums. In an aquarium setting, their natural habitat of rocks and caves should be emulated. Their diet should consist mostly of prepared cichlid pellets or flakes, supplemented with foods like krill, brineshrimp, Spirulina flake, and veggies. A healthy diet and carotene rich foods like krill and spirulina will help your fish, in good lighting, to appear neon-like (hence the name “electric yellow”).