I’ve just returned from my 15-minute stroll from my local aquarium shop, Seaview Aquariums and brought home two checkerboard cichlids. I suspect that they are spade-tailed checkerboard cichlids (Crenicara maculata) rather than lyretailed checkerboard cichlids (Crenicara filamentosa). They’re still young though, so maybe it is the lyretailed after all when they have grown up.
I’ve been waiting to introduce a cichlid or two into my aquarium for ages! Cichlid enthusiasts usually gush with their praise of this type of fish – they say that cichlids are full of characters and are intelligent fish who can recognise when the owner is in the room. Admittedly my option is limited because cichlids are usually kept in cichlid-specific aquariums and not in a community aquarium. Another limitation is that due to the size of my aquarium, it’s not feasible or humane to keep large cichlids.
So I’ve been researching for months – I had a shortlist of cichlid species: Bolivian Ram, Kribensis, Keyhole cichlid, or Checkerboard cichlid. I nearly got myself a Bolivian Ram, but the store ran out of the fish and I would have to wait for another week. Keyhole is out of the question because of its size when it’s fully grown. Kribensis is also known to be quite territorial and vicious when breeding – so that left me with checkerboard cichlid. I watched them in the store and how they swam in the fishtank with their timid demeanour – a sudden move forward, stop, dunk down to get something to eat, and move forward again, stop. They won me over. 🙂
I’ve just finished putting them into my aquarium now – they are both still shell-shocked after their trip from the aquarium store and the change of environment. One is acting more lively than the other – hopefully I won’t lose any!
Focusing on life’s simpler pleasure such as my fish, my plants, and thinking how to tackle the next stage in my career is much more exciting rather than reading the news about the financial meltdown and the strong possibility that the world is truly heading into recession. 🙁
Postscript: I returned home from a farewell dinner to find one of the checkerboard being face-down on the aquarium floor … I suppose it didn’t survive the ordeal. 🙁 Ah well … I hope the sole cichlid continues to grow and be happy in his new home!