The Interruptus Cichlid comes from the islands of Likoma and Chizumulu in Lake Malawi, Africa.
The males of this species have a great similarity in the colouration with the males of the Melanochromis Johannii and Melanochromis Cyaneorhabdos better known as Maingano. The Interruptus unlike the other two species does not keep the parallel lines of the body in a row, rather the designation of the species as Interruptus is interrupted. In juvenile state, both sexes have the same yellow / orange colour, males with maturity change to a dark blue colour almost black while females retain the yellow / orange colour.
Males usually measure about 10 centimeters long, females between 8 and 10 cm.
The Interruptus Cichlid can be kept in aquariums from 200 litres onwards. Ideally, keep a male for three or four females. The decoration of the tank can be conditioned like that of any mbuna: many stones to form rocky structures and obtain a large number of caves, in order to have numerous territories and hiding places so necessary for these fish. A good filtration of 10 times the capacity of the aquarium and a good movement of the water to have a good oxygenation of the aquarium and adequate lighting to encourage the growth of algae.
Like the great majority of mbunas, this species in its natural habitat is based on algae and plant matter. Omnivorous in captivity we can keep it with a varied diet. Without forgetting that an excess of animal proteins will not do you any good.
These fish follow the same patterns in their behavior as the great majority of mbunas. They are territorial and aggressive. It is better not to keep them with males of the same species and with species that have the same colouration.
The laying takes place in the substrate. They use the typical courtship in that the male makes his whole body vibrate to seduce the females. The female deposits the eggs and the male fertilises them. The female then collects them by depositing them in her mouth. This operation is repeated and once the laying is finished, the female leaves the area in search of a safe and quiet place to begin the incubation that lasts between 21 to 30 days. The young can be fed with finely crushed flake food.
- Species – Melanochromis interruptus
- Common Name – Interruptus
- Origin – Lake Malawi
- Diet – Omnivore/Herbivore
- PH Range – Alkaline 7.5 – 8.5
- Water Type – Hard
- Temperature – Tropical 24°c
- Breed Type – Mouth brooder
- Current Size – approximately 5cm (Grows to approximately 10cm)
- Sex – Un-sexed