This is probably one of the most asked questions on forums, “What are the most colorful cichlids out there?”. Since I’m not familiar with South & Central American Cichlids I can’t comment those. However, here is MY list of the 10 most colorful african cichlids. * not in a particular order.
1) Labidochromis Caeruleus aka Yellow Lab or Electric Yellow is a relatively peaceful Mbuna and one of the my all time favorites. Beautiful yellow color with black fins.
2) Pseudotropheus Acei is also relatively peaceful Mbuna and very common in the hobby. With it’s blue body and yellow fins this fish is a real stunner.
3) Aulonocara Firefish also called Dragon Blood or Red Orchid does not occur in the wild. This peacock is a line bred cichlid originated from Germany. It is one of the reddest “African” cichlid I have seen so far.
4) Pseudotropheus sp. “Williamsi North”. This particular cichlid isn’t very common in the hobby. From my experience their they are extremely peaceful and make a great addition to any african cichlid community tank. Male display a nice orange color with light blue fins and blue lips. Simply beautiful!
5) Small but feisty. Pseudotropheus Demasoni belongs to the dwarf Mbuna’s. This fish is aggressive in nature and should be kept in groups of 10 or more. This small cichlid with it’s blue fluorescent body is one of my favorite Mbuna’s.
6) Sciaenochromis Ahli aka Electric Blue Ahli belongs to Haplochromines tribe and is endemic to Lake Malawi. Amazing blue body coloration.
7) Astatotilapia Calliptera a Malawi Haplochromines is often mis-identified as a Lake Victoria cichlid due it’s physical appearance. I never had this fish but it is certainly on my most wanted list.
8) Tropheus sp. “Black” Kiriza is endemic to Lake Tanganyikan and is fairly common in the hobby. This cichlid is aggressive and should be housed in a specie only tank.
9) Xystichromis sp. “Kyoga Flameback” a beautiful Victorian Hap. This cichlids will do fine with other peaceful malawi cichlids such as peacocks or haps.
10) Aulonocara Baenschi is a peaceful Peacock endemic to Lake Malawi. It is often sold under the name “sunshine peacock”. Beautiful fish and a great addition to any show tank.
This is my personal top 10 most colorful cichlid list. For more profiles and pictures check Cichlid Explorer. What are your favorite most colorful cichlids?