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Checkerboard Cichlid (Dicrossus filamentosa)

Photo of: Checkerboard Cichlid (Dicrossus filamentosa)

Scientific Name(s): Crenicara filamentosa, Cremocara filamentosus, Crenicara filamentosa, Dicrossus filamentosa


Common Name(s): Checkerboard Cichlid, Checkerboard Lyretail, Lyretail Cichlid, Chessboard Cichlid


Family: Cichlidae


Species Type: South American Cichlids


Maximum Size: 3 inches


Life Span: 5 years


Natural Habitat: South American rivers and streams


Minimum Tank Size: 20 gallons


Tank Region: Middle to bottom of tank.


Possible Tank Mates: Other peaceful south american species such as angelfish, silver dollars or barbs


Description: These are small, thin torpedo-shaped fish. Checkerboard Cichlids have an off-white ventral surface. That same color, along with dark beige, is included in the side striping. The two dark beige stripes are overlaid with thicker black squarish splotches, and the lowest such stripe commences with a black eye mask. The dorsal fin of D. filamentosus makes up most of the length of the dorsal surface. All fins (except the sometimes-red ventrals) are clear and may have an iridescent green sheen to them.


Temperature Range: 74°F - 82°F



pH Range: 6 - 7.4

pH 5.0
pH 6.0
pH 7.0
pH 8.0
pH 9.0


Hardness Range: 1° - 15°



Breeding Information: Moderately easy. In soft, acidic water, the pair will will clean a broad leaf or flat rock. The female will then lay her eggs on the leaf or rock and they are immediately fertilized by the male. After spawning, the female guards the eggs and becomes very territorial. She will attack any fish that gets too close to her eggs, including the male cichlid.


Sexing Information: Males tend to be larger and more colorful that females


Diet: Carnivorous - Does well with flake or pellet foods but also enjoys live or frozen foods.


Temperament: Generally peaceful


Common Diseases: None specific to species


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