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FAQs on the Flowerhorn Cichlids 1

Related Articles: Flowerhorns by Ong, Blood Parrots & Flowerhorn Cichlids: maintenance and healthcare of two popular hybrid cichlids by Neale Monks, What do you think of Flowerhorn Cichlids? By Neale Monks, Cichlid Fishes

Related FAQs: Flowerhorns 2, Flowerhorn Identification, Flowerhorn Behavior, Flowerhorn Compatibility, Flowerhorn Selection, Flowerhorn Systems, Flowerhorn Feeding, Flowerhorn Disease, FAQs on Flowerhorn Cichlid Disease by Category: Environmental, Nutritional (e.g. HLLE), Social, Infectious (Virus, Bacterial, Fungal), Parasitic (Ich, Velvet...), Genetic, Treatments, Flowerhorn Reproduction, Cichlids, Dwarf South American Cichlids, African Cichlids, Angelfishes, Discus, Chromides, Neotropical Cichlids


Flowerhorn With Internal Bacterial Infection  - 03/13/2006 I found your website about Flower Horn very informative especially the FAQ section. Anyway, a friend of mine gave us a Flower Horn as a gift and now I have encountered a similar problem that I read from your article dated 12/15/05 about Flower Horn lying on one side.  I did not go to a vacation, also I do not know if my children over feed it with pellets.   The fins are still moving and at times the Flower Horn would dare to swim but not as graceful as before. And when it tries to swim the body can not "flex" from left to right, as if it has a "cramp". I noticed too that the tummy seems to be full.  I already tried changing about 50% of the water, and cleaning the aquarium.  Also I noticed that the thing coming out from the Flower Horn is a bit white and transparent like.  It has been 3 days already, I would appreciate very much if you can recommend me something that would make my Flower Horn better. Kind regards, < Your FH has an internal bacterial infection. As the bacteria grows it swells the intestines of the fish and puts pressure on the internal organs. It is usually brought on by stress. Keep the tank clean and treat with a combination of Metronidazole and Nitrofuranace. If he is eating then mix the Metronidazole in with the food into a paste and try and get him to eat it. If he is not eating then just treat the water as per the directions on the package. The key to a successful treatment is treating it in the early stages.-Chuck>


Request advice as My Flowerhorn is not eating, NNS- 2/28/2006 Dear WWM Crew, <Hello there> Greeting to you from Bangalore, India. I bought a Flowerhorn ? FEMALE almost 6 months back age being probably 2 to 3 years old. It was very active and used to play with us the moment we went near the tank and would go after the live fish and eat them instantly. Later almost 45 days back I cleaned the tank <Not all the water I hope/trust. Best to retain a good 75% or so and replace this if you have occasion to dump the whole system> and filled in fresh water and later observed it was not active and was hiding behind the filter most of the time and used to ignore the live guppies or small gold fishes. Then on keen observation I saw hordes of white minute dot like insects all over the tank. I put a locally available Mr. White medicine around 25 drops. The next day they were all over the tank like a white sheet. I separated the flower horn gave a potassium permanganate dip as advised by my dealer, <Yikes... a strong oxidizer. So dangerous that it's rarely sold for American aquarist use> cleaned the tank thoroughly and reintroduced the flower horn and put tetracycline 500 mg in the tank, She seemed to get better but it is almost 2 week now her appetite has not improved does not feed on live fish eats only the regular fish food that too only after 2-4 hrs. Kindly advice. I do not want HER to die. I also observed that of late She keeps jumping in the tank throwing most of the water outside. Kindly advice. Regards. G. KRISHNAKUMAR. <Very likely all you need to do is actually stop treating this fish. Leave off with medicines, add activated carbon to the filter and in a few days it will likely return to feeding. Bob Fenner>


Flowerhorn Cichlids Don't Have Color   2/10/06 Hi! I'm Joan from the Philippines.  My husband and I are newbies in FH care.  We have 2 Flowerhorns that are almost 1 year old.  The thing is, both their colors are not as vibrant as other Flowerhorns that I see in the website.  They are mostly black with red along the gills but that's it.  I did some research but nothing that can possibly answer specifically to my problem.  1.What can I do/feed my FH to make their colors change? (the aquariums have coral backgrounds.  No gravels or sand. No decorations either.) < A Flowerhorn is a hybrid of three different cichlid species. Their colors can range from grey to bright red. This is determined by the genetics of the parents. If your fish do not contain the correct genes then they will never look like the web site photos.> 2. Can it still be remedied? They are almost 1 year already.  3. One of the FH's aquarium water becomes greenish in color after a few days.  What causes these things? (note: the aquarium is not in direct sunlight). < You can enhance what color they do have with good nutrition, but you cannot create color on a fish. The green water may be from the food or high nitrates in the water.-Chuck>


One Out of Four Tanks With An Algae Problem  - 2/4/2006 My parents in the Philippines have 4 flower horns each in a separate 20 Gallon Aquarium but there is this one particular flower horn that within a day of cleaning the tank the water turns green and streaks of green (is this algae??) < Probably.> can also be noticed on the base of the tank.  They have tried replacing half of the water of the tank to almost 3 times in a week but the problem seems to be persistent.  The tank has a pump & an overhead filter but this doesn't seem to help.  The fishes are fed with 'Grand Sumo' - the brand name of the flower horn fish food they've been feeding the 4 flower horns for almost a year now.  They don't have any problems with the 3 other tanks but only with this one.  Do you have any suggestions or answers with this kind of problem?  Thank you so much in advance and hope to hear from you soon. < Check the water in all four tanks for nitrates. If the readings are all the same and the filtration is all the same then the problem is indirect room lighting. Light from an adjacent window or lamp is probably the answer. remove or block the light source and the algae should match that of the other three tanks.-Chuck>


Flowerhorn Cichlid With Black Markings   2/1/06 Hi there, this is a GREAT website you all have!  Looks like a ton of great info here.  My tank is 100 gallons, I stay on top of water maintenance with 40% water changes weekly, ammonia = 0, nitrites = 0, nitrates = 10.  Ph is at 7.7.  I recently bought a Flower Horn, everything was normal for about the first week.  Then I started noticing these black areas that seemed under the skin, not on top or bulging.  Almost like bruises.  They also appeared on the fins, but smaller.  The spots on the body are getting larger.  I should add that the fishes feces is really light in color, but not "stringy" at all.  The FH acts normal, has no problem swimming, being active, or eating.  I have searched high and low for answers, but I get all different replies and suggestions.  I've treated the tank with Jungle's "Fungus Cure", but no changes.  I then treated with Melafix, same, no changes.  Here is a couple links to some pics of the fish, do you think it is sick?  Or is this just a normal phase of color change before the true colors come out?  Any info on this is highly appreciated.  Thank you! < A Flowerhorn is a cross between three different species of cichlid. From your photos It seems to look more like a generic trait than a disease.-Chuck> http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v205/djfungus/ProgressedBlackPatch.jpg http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v205/djfungus/BlackSpots2.jpg


Breeding Flowerhorns  - 1/30/2006 Hi, I've been reading your forum and it has informed me a lot, but still there are some questions that I have to ask. I am trying to breed my flower horn fish. I have a 35 gallon tank that has colored pebbles on the bottom with a 4x2 inch pot in the female side. I know that I have a pair with me right now and I did put them together in the same tank for almost a year now (with no divider), yes they would fight sometimes, some times I see my female getting worked but lately I noticed that the female has a big tummy with the straw sticking out her tummy, she was very red, and I saw the male got worked pretty bad, he lost his tail fins and scales. As a matter of fact he really got weak, so I divided them with a glass divider, now they mind each others business. The female had a big tummy for almost a month now and she lost the straw under her belly I don't see no eggs, but I see a pebble like cocoon that I know it came from her. My question is, how long before she would lay eggs and what is that cocoon like thing that I see on the bottom of the tank? By the way it is color white and is about half an inch looks like a pebble but am sure its not. When can I take out the divider and would the eggs mature even they are separated by a divider? Please I've me more info on hoe to successfully breed my flower horn.. I really need a lot of help, this is my first time to own a fish, any kind of fish. Eriq < To get the fish ready do a 50% water change, and clean the filter. Get the water temp up to 82 F. When you are going to be home for awhile to watch them, pull the tank divider and watch them. If they start to act like a couple then you can leave them alone for awhile. If they are going at it then you will need to separate them and try again later. Don't know what the pebble thing is. Get it out of the tank.-Chuck> Flowerhorn Trouble    1/25/06 Hi, I have a very big headache and is trying my best to save my Flowerhorn. My Flowerhorn hit very hard on the side of my fish tank while my mother is playing with it and stays on its side ever since at the bottom of the tank. It has been 3 weeks now and he is still alive. I tried very hard to push him upright vertical) but he seems to slip down horizontally to one of its side every time. All he can do now is move his eyes, slightly move his tail and flap one of its fin. For the other fin, he can only move it slightly and is seems to be infected and looks a bit small with white spots. He looks a bit inflated though. He is able to push himself by sliding on the bottom of the tank. About food, he is still able to eat slightly but he will to spit some of the food out sometimes. Before the incident we used to give him some guppies (found in the drain) to eat. I am really worried that he might have eaten some infected ones. Regards Josephine Lai < The trauma to the fish probably caused some permanent nerve damage. As he swims on his side the substrate is scrapping him up and it may now be coming infected from the guppies in the drain. Remove the substrate, do a 50% water change, clean the filter and keep mom away from the tank. Treat with Nitrofuranace as per the directions on the package. This will clean up the infections but I am afraid your fish may not fully recover from the trauma.-Chuck>


Breeding Flowerhorn Cichlids   1/20/06 Greetings! I am Leo Ilagan of the Philippines. I'm a new flower horn hobbyist and I would really appreciate it if you could help me out with some of my questions. First, Is it true that I can breed two flower horns even with a divider between them and a small space beneath it? < Yes, it is possible to breed substrate spawning cichlids using the divider method. This is often done with plastic egg crate type material purchased from a hardware store in 4'x2' sheets.> Second, is it still necessary to put gravel, plants, rocks or any other form of decoration in my tank? < Some aquarists have had better luck using a flower pot or a rock as a focal point for the spawn. It not used they will lay the eggs on the glass and then they cannot be removed and hatched artificially.> Third, I have a flower horn who remains small even after a month and I would like to ask if after separating him from the larger ones, could he still grow to his potential size and form? < Females stay usually smaller than the males. You could also have a "runt" that genetically will not grow to the size of the others.> And last, does chipped skin or scales grow back after being bitten by fellow flower horns? < Usually the scales will grow back but maybe not as nicely patterned as the original scales .-Chuck> Hope you can help me and I'm glad I found your website. Many thanks in advance.


Flowerhorn Questions   1/14/06 Hi there, I've been reading through your site and it is really informative about FH I have couple of questions though about my FH 1.) All orange in color with darker tint at the head part, what kind of breed is this? < Flowerhorns are a cross between three different cichlids. One of them is a red devil. This fish comes in white, orange, red and grey. Your fish could be a combination of any of these colors. You will need to consult a specific FH book for an exact breed.> 2.)It has some spots of black at the fins and body but not like the flower rows on red dragons, the previous owner said that when the FH matures it will turn to all orange with some red on the head part, is this true? < Could be. It all depends on the genetic lottery your fish has come up with. The colors may change as it grows. To what color ? You will have to grow him up and find out.> 3.)Also he hasn't been eating lately how can I  tell if he is sick? < Don't feed him for three days. If he is not hungry after three days he is probably sick with an internal bacterial infection. Do a 50% water change, clean the filter and vacuum the gravel. Treat him with Metronidazole as per the directions on the package.-Chuck> I would really appreciate your fast reply. Thank you


Flowerhorn With Cloudy Eyes  - 01/09/2006 Dear WWM, My male Flowerhorn, has a white film over both of his eyes for about 2 weeks now. I've noticed that at the center of the eyes there's a circle that's fuzzy. I thought that it was cloud eye, and have been using Melafix + methylene blue + salt for 2 weeks, also I changed 30% of the water every week and there has been no improvement. I want to know what can I do or which medicine I should use, to help cure my fish of this eye disease? Thank You Rodney <  Do a 50% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. Try erythromycin. Follow the directions on the package. When the fish is cured the add carbon to remove the excess medication and then add Bio-Spira by Marineland to reestablish the good bacteria in the tank.-Chuck>


Flowerhorn Floating  12/15/05 Hi, I went on vacation and left a Flowerhorn fish alone.  It's been 2 weeks that he's lying on one side on the surface.  He has a bump at the side tummy and is exposed ( not submerse in water). No color change and fin is still moving.  What can I do?  Please help, I do not know what to do. <Sometimes when people leave on vacation they try and fatten up their fish before they leave by feeding them extra food. The problem with this idea is that they eat too much and sometimes the food blocks their intestines. The bacteria in the gut start to feed on the blocked food and they generate gas and the gas develops into pressure and bloating. Do a 30% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. Treat with Metronidazole as per the directions on the package. You fish is pretty well along and you may not have caught it in time.-Chuck>


Flowerhorn Doesn't Eat Much  11/28/05 Hi crew. I want to first thank you for your quick replies to my questions. The replies have helped me a lot. Now here is my question. My Flowerhorn has low appetite. It is not affected with any disease. What do I do? < Increase the water temp to 80 to 82 F. Offer the food once each day for two minutes. If it is not gone then remove the uneaten food. If the fish doesn't eat after three days then it probably has an internal bacterial infection and needs to be treated with a combination of Nitrofurazone and Metronidazole.> My smaller Flowerhorn has good shape and coloration but has no head. Even the special FLOWERHORN foods have not helped much. Will feeding it on shrimp meat help in the enlargement of hump? <The large hump on the forehead of Flowerhorns is a fat storage device. It is usually larger in males but I guess some females could have it too. The difference between the two could just be heredity.-Chuck>


Male Flowerhorn Sterile?  11/22/05 Dear WWM crew, I had written to you about breeding Flowerhorns, before, but after a couple of tries at breeding, with no success I have a couple more questions to ask...  Is my male Flowerhorn seems to be sterile...? <Maybe> The reason I ask is because my female has laid eggs twice and they all just died after 4-5days!  <Could be you have two females even> I would like to know, how do I know if a male Flowerhorn is Sterile?  <Mmm, your present observations> My male has a tube thing near the anus, but its black at the end of it, and its shriveled up... am not sure if that's a physical sign of an infertile male...  <Mmm, no... though shape, size is often sexually indicative> What would be a good Visual way to know if a male is infertile? <Not possible... can/could be tested (most likely through sacrificing the fish), or somehow testing the fish through "stripping" and a microscope... But/and often cichlids don't "do it" correctly the first few tries...> Can Female Flowerhorn eggs be infertile? <Yes> I guess it would be hard to know if its since it lays the eggs....but if there is any way to find out, I would like to know about it. (you can check my site, and look at the album to see pictures of the fish, am not sure if that would help) Thank You Rod http://www.rodsfish.com  <I am cc'ing Chuck Rambo here (he's been out of town a while) as he knows much more than I re such matters. Bob Fenner> 


Feeding flower horn (non-native writer)  11/20/05 Hi WWM crew. An excellent site for aquarists. I have a question.  I have a flower horn that has been not eating. It has been over a month.  I fed it on chicken liver. <Mmm, I would not do this> I performed a 25% water change but no luck.  It does not appear to be affected by any disease.  What do I do? and will the chicken liver help in the development of the hump and the colour or should I feed it on chicken heart or mutton heart/liver?  Any advice will greatly be appreciated. Thank you <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/flowerhorns.htm and the linked FAQs file... and on to cichlid feeding... Bob Fenner> <<And feed ME the chicken livers.. yum!  Marina>>


Flowerhorn Not Eating 10/31/05 I recently bought a young Red Dragon Flowerhorn probably around 2 inches in length. I noticed that it is not eating the pellets that I'm putting into the fish tank. I'm using a 10 gallon fish aquarium. Please help as I'm afraid that the FH's failure to eat properly may cause it to stop growing. Thanks! < Keep the water temp up around 80 F. fed once a day. Place the food in the tank for only two minutes once each day. Remove all uneaten food after two minutes with a siphon. Repeat the next day. After a couple of days you should be see some feeding while the food is in the tank. If not then there may be an internal bacterial infection blocking the intestine and you will need to treat with Metronidazole.-Chuck> 


Breeding Flowerhorn Cichlids  10/3/05 Hi you've been helpful since I started making Flowerhorns a hobby. I bought a 2 month old FH and it looks like a potential female Red Dragon. My question is it possible for it to mate with a FH that is 2 months older? < Once both fish are sexually mature then age does not matter.> By the way it has Ich/white spots it's very few, how will I be able to cure it? < Raise the water temp to 80+ F and treat with Kordon's Rid-Ich.-Chuck> Thanks a lot. Ja

Breeding Flowerhorn Cichlids  10/3/05 Hi you've been helpful since I started making Flowerhorns a hobby. I bought a 2 month old FH and it looks like a potential female Red Dragon. My question is it possible for it to mate with a FH that is 2 months older? < Once both fish are sexually mature then age does not matter.> By the way it has Ich/white spots it's very few, how will I be able to cure it? < Raise the water temp to 80+ F and treat with Kordon's Rid-Ich.-Chuck> Thanks a lot. Ja
Breeding Flowerhorns  9/21/05
Dear WWM, Chuck, Thank you for all you help so far, I was able to get my fighting male and female FH's to breed, I THINK? I have a few more questions, that I hope you can help me with. My female laid eggs and the male is on the other side of a divider in the tank...How do I know if the eggs were fertilized? < If the eggs were infertile then they would soon die and turn white.> How long does the eggs take to hatch? < About three days at 82 F> Should I remove the female immediately when the eggs hatch? < The female usually does a pretty good job taking care of the eggs. When they hatch she will no longer be needed to fan the eggs.> Should I remove the Male  from the tank if the eggs were fertilized/hatched or leave him on the other side of the divider? < There are different ways of removing the fry from the parents. You could remove the substrate that the eggs were laid on after three days and place it in a separate tank under similar conditions. After the eggs hatch you could remove the parents or siphon out the fry into a separate vessel with airline tubing. The male may eat any fry that wander over to his side of the tank.> Are newly hatched eggs mobile? If not, how long should I leave the female in the same tank? < After three days the fry will absorbed their eggs sac and begin to swim around in search of food. The female should be removed after the fry become free swimming.> How long after the fry's hatched, would I be able to move them to a new tank? < Anytime. Just match the existing water conditions.> I took some pictures with a friends digital camera yesterday, but the eggs appeared today.... so here are some pictures of the set up. I attached... also you can check out more pictures on my website: http://www.kevynews.com/~rod/home/home.htm < Thanks-Chuck>


Bloated Flowerhorn  9/21/05 Hi crew , I need some help or advice please. I am in Australia and have a Flowerhorn my girlfriend at the time gave me. She hated it. It was continuously attacking her Oscar lols. I noticed today it made a huge hole in the gravel in its tank. It was just laying there so I thought I have a look . I am sort of glad I did as I noticed something real weird for me  it has 2 vents I guess u call then near its tail at bottom of its body and one vent/hole has sticky red jelly substance oozing out of it and the second vent/hole is like a pimple or boil and when I lightly touched near it it squirted out a clear substance and I am worried like any thing now As I grew really attached to the fish I feed it live feeder fish once a month and a Nutrafin max Flowerhorn cichlid food for superior colour and conditioning formula any help be great and hope to hear from you soon once again love your site. Wolf < Your Flowerhorn has an internal bacterial infection. The bacteria are pushing some of the intestines out of the fish as the infection grows. Do a 50% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. Treat with both Metronidazole and Nitrofurazone as per the directions on the packages. This disease sounds pretty advanced and may not respond to treatment.-Chuck>


Flowerhorn Diet  9/21/05 Thank you for your reply. Now I am having a different problem. I even think it is worse than the Flowerhorn not eating pellets. Now it is not eating at all. It doesn't look sick, but sometimes I find it only in a corner of the aquarium but most of the time it is swimming around. Another question. is it ok to feed the Flowerhorn pig's fat? < If your Flowerhorn won't eat then you need to feed him once a day. Try premoistened pellets soaked in vitamins. Place the pellets in the tank and then remove them after two minutes. Do this only once each day. If he is still not eating after a few days he may have an internal bacterial infection that will require a treatment of Metronidazole and Nitrofuranace.  Do a 30% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. Heat the tank up to 80 F. Feed a high quality pelleted fish designed for your fish and skip the pig's fat unless you want your Flowerhorn to bloat up like a balloon and die.-Chuck>


Flowerhorn Stopped Growing  9/19.5/05 I separated my Flowerhorn from each other since they were starting to be aggressive (2 out of 4 died) and one was brutally injured (I placed it in a small aquarium first) but one remained strong. The one who was in perfect condition grew rapidly but the one who was injured stopped it's growth for about 2 months already. It's now in a big aquarium but it is still not growing. It has a very low appetite and would not even eat pellets but choose to eat insects of different kinds instead. What should I do for it to grow bigger again. <First, if this is a female it may not grow as large as a male. Also, it's normal for the fish to stop growing if stressed from a bad injury or aggression. For now I would keep it in a low aggression tank. Give it time and plenty of water changes. Insects are a fine natural food for a cichlid. But too many with hard shells can cause digestive problems. Earthworms would be better. You can wean him her back to pellets after it's appetite returns. Don>  


Flowerhorn, Exophthalmus - 09/10/2005 Hi, <Hello.> I have a Flower Horn called Y6 ( Breed : Red - monkey), about 1.5 years old. It's a beautiful fish and it likes to play with us. However, I found one of its eye has been expanded. But it is still red in colour and play with us as usual. What's wrong is it? <Something has caused a fluid buildup behind the eye; perhaps physical trauma (very likely) or an infection.  This is called Exophthalmus, or "pop-eye". I bought a medicine called : Waterlife - OCTOZIN because I asked some people that in the fish store of Flower Horn. <I would likely not use medicine for this condition.  Instead, add Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) to the tank at a rate of one tablespoon per five gallons.  In a few days, you can do a water change and add Epsom again.  This will help relieve the fluid buildup.> I want to ask : 1) Will Y6 die easily? <I doubt the fish will die.  He looks to be in excellent condition aside from this problem.  It is possible that he will lose the eye, and if he does, you might want to use an antibiotic like Nitrofurazone or Kanamycin to prevent infection - but even then, if he's in otherwise good shape, he'll probably pull through okay.> 2) What's the name of the disease? <As above, this condition is called Exophthalmus.  Any major swelling of the eye can be called this.> 3) How can I save him? <Keep caring for him very well; keep his water quality perfect.  Add the Epsom, and watch to see if it helps.> P.S : I took 4 photos of Y6, hope you can reply me as soon as possible cause I love him very much, THANKS A LOT!! <Thank you for the images, they are VERY well done and show his condition very well.> Vienne from Hong Kong. <Wishing Y6 a swift recovery,  -Sabrina, from California, USA>


Pairing Up Flowerhorns  9/5/05 Dear, WWM, Chuck, I recent bought a male (huge hump, long fins, about 8inches) and what I think is a female (very little or no hump, short fins, fat belly, about 6inch), from separate owners. I have them in there own tanks, and they cannot see each other. I wanted to try an breed them, so, today I tried putting the female in the male's tank (hoping that they would pair up), but instead they immediately started fighting, by locking there mouths together, I watched them do this for about 5 min.s and saw the female was getting her mouth bitten up. So I took her back out and put her into her own tank again. I have seen that kind of fighting between male Bettas and sometimes when I am breeding Bettas also. My questions are... Can put these 2 fishes that are use to living in separate tanks, together to breed? < Playing match maker with adult Central American cichlids is very very risky. I would get some plastic egg crate used in home improvement store for lighting panels and make a divider out of it. Put the male in one side and the female in the other. This way they can see each other but not get to each other. If the female lays eggs the male can still fertilizer them fro quite a distance away.> What are the mating rituals of Flowerhorns? (like what kinds of things do they do before pairing up or mating? What are signs of mating?) < Courtship can be pretty rough. Lots of flaring and mouth locking. If they are compatible and the female is ready to breed then after the tug a war they will begin to clear an area for the female to lay eggs. The eggs are laid on a flat surface with the male following closely behind the female to fertilize the eggs.> How do you know when they are doing this ritual or fighting? < Sometimes it is difficult to tell. When one fish plainly gives up and runs for cover then it is time to get the loser out or they will be killed.> What is the average time for this mating ritual to take place? < Could be hours or days depending on the water temp and how closely matched the two fish are.> One of my friends has a pair, and they don't fight or anything, they defend there hole they dug in the gravel. I really want my 2 Fh's to live like that, am sure I have more questions, but I can think of them right now... I will have to send another email, but I'll wait for your reply on this one... Thank You So Much, you guy's are the best. < Compatibility among cichlid pairs is a touch and go thing. They may be fine one minute and then at each others throat the next. Good Luck.-Chuck>


Flowerhorn of a Different Color  9/3/05 Hello WWM team, Chuck, Thanks for answering my previous questions about Flowerhorns. I have another. Can you tell me, or make a list of the major types of Flowerhorns? < Nope , sorry. Flowerhorns are a hybrid between three different cichlid species. These different names are nothing more than labels used to group similar Flowerhorns together. There is a book entirely on flower horns that I have seen on eBay. I would recommend that you check it out for further info on these particular fish. My area of interest involves wild types of fish.> I know there is Zhao Zen, full red or something... I have a Flowerhorn (ill try to get a pic of it, no camera..) and am not even sure what kind it is... its whole body is dark army green when its relaxed, but startled it turns striped, army green with light green, it only has couple of flowers very small... if possible from my brief description do you know what it might be? Thank You Very Much Rod < Colors can be very deceiving. Many cichlid coloration can be modified by using different foods or aquarium lighting.-Chuck>


Flowerhorn Questions  9/3/05 Hey, WWM, Chuck, I was just told by my friend that I should put crushed coral into my Flowerhorn tank, because it promotes the hump growth and fish health by balancing the ph... or increasing it? < Crushed coral is simply calcium carbonate. In acidic water the shells dissolve and help buffer the water and keep it from crashing (Becoming too acidic). It may stabilize the pH and thus keep your Flowerhorn healthy. Especially if you live in an area with soft water.> Well I searched your forum and I couldn't find an answer... I want to know is Crushed Coral good for Flowerhorns? < In soft acidic waters it is probably beneficial to have crushed coral in the tank.> Are Flowerhorns hard water or soft water fish? < More hard water than soft water.> Can Flowerhorns survive in high ph water? < To a point. I would not go much higher than 8.> What are some signs that a female Flowerhorn is ready to spawn? < Heavy belly with a thin tube protruding from the anal region. The pair will usually be seen cleaning an area and chasing away other fish.> Can I put a Pleco or cat fish with my male Flowerhorn 8 inches big? < Big Central American cichlids are very territorial of their spaces. I probably would not risk it. Chuck> thank you very much


Flowerhorn Questions  8/27/05 Hey, I got a couple questions about a flowerhorn's hump on the head.... This guy is selling a Flowerhorn online, and in the picture it has a pretty big hump, but when I finally decided to go buy it and pick it up, he told me, that since he had sold his 150gallon tank, and the fish has been in a 29gallon tank, the hump on the head has gotten "a bit smaller", but he said it will regrow in my big tank.... My questions are; 1) Does a flowerhorn's hump shrink?????? < The hump on the head is nothing more than a fat deposit that can shrink or swell depending on the diet, genetics and environment that it is kept in.> 2) Will it regrow when I put it in a larger, if it shrank? < Give it good food and clean water will definitely bring it back, maybe to the same extent that it was before depending on the age.> 3) Does the size of the tank affect the size of the fish (or hump) once it has grow to adult??? (so for example, you have a fish it grows to adult in a 150gallon tank and then u put it in a 29 gallon tank, does it size or hump shrink?)... < Larger tanks tend to be more stable than smaller tanks. Nitrates accumulate quicker in smaller tanks between water changes with bigger fish due to the dilution factor and better filtration.-Chuck> Thank You very much for reading my email I hope hear from you soon ;)


Identifying Flowerhorn fry 8/20/05 Today I went into the pet shop in Chinatown, Manhattan, NY. I was looking to purchase some Flowerhorn fry's about 1 inch or less ... the pet shop guy showed me some "Flowerhorn fry" that were with parrot fish fry but to me when looked at the "Flowerhorn fry" they didn't have red eyes, very dark coloration, some spots, and really looked like some sort of other cichlid ...... my question is how do you tell apart Flowerhorn fry from other cichlid fry? What are the major or key distinctions to look for if any? thanks a lot. < At one inch Flowerhorns look like the fry of red devils from which they are partially derived. They may range in color from  solid red to grey with stripes. This makes it very difficult to determine if you truly have a Flowerhorn. I personally buy fish from breeders if I am concerned about genetics. In this case I would ask the store to guarantee that they are truly Flowerhorns. If they are not, make sure you bring them back for a full refund. If the store owner declines then you already have your answer and you don't need to waste your time and money on a fish you have no interest in.-Chuck>


Flowerhorn With a Headache - 08/16/2005 Dear Crew, <Hello, Arnie.> I have a Fiery Phoenix FH named Elmo.  He's 2 years old, he has a perfect body with a very nice humpy head.  Last Monday, he accidentally bumped his head in the aquarium because he was very furious with our cat who happened to pass by his tank.   <Temper, temper!  What an aggressive fellah!> I think the impact was too strong in which he vertically slammed down the edge of his tank.  I was so afraid that he might die, he couldn't swim but was still breathing.   <At that point, dazed or injured....> What we did was to assist him by holding him with net.  We tried to make him relax for about 20-30 min.s without swimming, because every time we tried to let him swim by himself, he vertically fell down.  After the 30 min.s observation, we found out that he can now swim by himself, however, whenever he tried to turn either going left or right, his body's falling down... <He may have permanently injured himself....  Damage to the brain or spine, perhaps....  Or he may still have a complete recovery.> It seems that he's so dizzy that every time he moves, his movement is very limited.....what should we do?   <Wait, and observe carefully....  If necessary, drop the water level enough that he doesn't have to struggle too much if he needs to make it to the surface to eat.  If he's still eating, I think there is a good chance that he will either recover fully, or at least still be able to survive.> Please help me!!  I already cried a lot and I don't want lose him...he's my baby!!! <I do understand what you're going through, I'm so sorry....  You have done excellently for him already, just giving him the care you have.> By the way, from the time of his accident, his appetite is still perfect, only his movement is not..... <A wonderful sign, indeed.  As long as he is eating, there is hope!> Arnie <Wishing you and Elmo well,  -Sabrina>

Flowerhorn With a Headache - II - 08/16/2005 Dear Sabrina, <Hi again, Arnie!> I am so thankful and very hopeful now after reading your prompt response...I'm relieved!!!! <Ahh, glad to be of service.> Is there any medicine which I can possibly give him?  If yes, what's the name of the medicine and where could I possibly buy? <Unless you see any wounds or abrasions, I would not medicate him.> Elmo still eats a lot, his appetite does not change... <A very good sign, for sure.> If he have damage in his brain (hope not)... does Elmo have a chance to live longer than 2 years? <Possibly - no real way of knowing.  He may live a mostly normal life, or he may not.  Too soon to tell.> Does he also have a chance to swim the same way as before?   <Too soon to tell on this, also....  Mostly, just wait and see, and make him as comfortable as you can.  He can't be feeling too terribly bad, if he's still eating normally.> Thank you so much again............... <Always glad to be of service.> Best regards,  -Arnie, Makati City, Philippines <Wishing Elmo a swift recovery,  -Sabrina, California, USA>


Fighting Flowerhorn - 08/11/2005 Hello Bob. <Actually, Sabrina here, in his stead> I have a question or two about Flowerhorns.  I have three flower horns housed separately in 50gallon tanks each.  They are about 6-7inches long and 8 months old.  How do you distinguish between a male and female?   <Can be very difficult with this unnatural/man-made hybrid.> One of my flower horn has a huge nuchal hump but short fins.  One has long fins but no nuchal hump.  The third one has a nuchal hump and long fins.  All have been purchased from the same brood.   <It could be entirely possible that all are males....  or not.  Again, with no natural standard, it can be exceedingly difficult to have any sort of guideline to tell you "this is female" or "this is male" until they actually breed.> I want to breed them, but the problem is that when I put them in my 125 gallon tank all three start kicking each other.   <Could be all males, or could just be that none are willing/able to breed yet.> There are no other fishes in the tank.  I would be very thankful if you help me out. <If you are absolutely bent on breeding this hybrid, I would pick the likeliest male (long fins, obvious hump) and the likeliest female (no hump) and let 'em duke it out.  Keep in mind, if they are both males, or if they're just not as ready to breed as you are, one or both may die.  Be CERTAIN to offer PLENTY of hiding locations (PVC pipes big enough to fully hide in, rocks, plants....) for the fish to "get away" from each other.  Wishing you well,  -Sabrina>


Crossing Flowerhorns? 7/7/05 We have an A-quality female Flowerhorn that started laying eggs without any encouragement. We also have a mature, good quality male Midas. We¹ve read that crossing these two will still produce Flowerhorns. We know the breeding process is a rough one but we¹re getting conflicting info from folks ³in the know.² Since they seem to be very happy with each other (by their terms, anyway) should we separate them at all until eggs are laid and fertilized? <Female Flowerhorns will lay their eggs on a substrate and they need to be fertilized pretty quickly by the male to be any good. You need to keep both in the same tank.> And how long does it take for that to happen? < If a pair is ready to go then a female could be ready to lay in as little as a week, depending on her size and the water temp.> Does she need to rest? < She can lay eggs as often as every two weeks depending on how well she is conditioned.> He keeps her swimming a lot. But they have both been cleaning the slate. How soon do we need to remove the Midas once the eggs are laid to keep the risk to her minor? < After the eggs are laid and fertilized by the male then he can be removed right after spawning.> A local Flowerhorn shop lets the male/female raise the fry together. Is this unusual? < No not really. The parents will lay the eggs and guard them for three days until they hatch. Then they will hatch and become free swimming three days later. After that then they should be removed because the parents will be getting ready to spawn again and eat the fry.> We also have a young Flowerhorn that we believe is a male but he¹s too small for her right now. Would it be better to wait until he is larger instead of pairing her and the Midas? < Depends on what you want to do. Cichlids don't like to switch partners once their set up.> We¹ve heard that breeding pairs can get grumpy if split up and put with a different fish. Do they really know the difference? < Absolutely!> Is there a book on Flowerhorns that we could purchase? Thank you. Erin & Russ < There is a book that has been published a few years ago. You can check on eBay or Amazon.-Chuck>


Flowerhorn Treatments Dear Sir, I really appreciate for your valuable answer. According to your answer you recommended me to use Nitrofuranace. My question is Can I use Tetracycline instead, Sir? < Tetracycline will work in clean soft acidic water. It is not as effective in hard water.> The black marks spreads gradually on his fin. And I also see some hole in his head.  So, what shall I do for this hole? < The hole in the head is a matter of sanitation and quality food> I'll be waiting your reply. Thank you so much for you help. I'd also be glad if you reply me in a very sooner time as I'm so worried for my baby fish. Thanks a lot! < Clean the tank as recommended and add some live food to the diet such as washed earthworms, shrimp and a quality fish pellet. Keep the nitrates under 25 ppm with water changes. If the hole in the head gets worse then treat with Metronidazole.-Chuck> 


Re: Asking advice about my FHorn Dear Sir, I have some question to ask you. The effect of Tetracycline and Nitrofuranace is the same or not? < While they are both antibiotics, there effectiveness is different depending on the water conditions and the bacteria type you are trying to control.> How long do I need to keep in my tank? < Depending on how far along the disease has persisted maybe up to a week if the water is good.> Do I need to let him in the pure water for 3 days before starting medication with the chemical water you recommended as he is not still in anti-fungus water yet as I'm a bit worried for whether he still has resistance for these treatment or not? <No, Clean the tank as recommended and then treat the tank right away. Don't worry about the other medication.> Can they effect the coloration of my baby fish? <Flowerhorns are a variable fish as far as color goes. Bacteria may leave scar tissue that will be dark and may never color up like unaffected areas of the fish.> How many amount shall I use? < Follow the directions on the package. Look at the expiration date of the medication and make sure it is still valid.> Nitrofuranace is the same as nitrofuration or not? Is it a kind of Nitrate? < Nitrofuranace is an antibiotic and nitrification is the process that breaks down fish waste like ammonia to a less toxic nitrite and finally to an even less toxic nitrate. There are no nitrates in Nitrofuranace.> I also feed my FHorn very special dry food, not raw food but the hole in his head also appeared. Thank you so much for your advice. Thanks a million, sir. I really and truly appreciate your very genius advice. I hope my baby fish will be fine soon. < These specialty foods are to enhance the color of your fish and not to provide any optimum nutrients and minerals. Clean water and a varied diet will help.-Chuck> 


Flowerhorn Problems, Playing the Guilt Card? I kindly request your help. Unless you help, my fish will be suffering this disease very disappointedly for such a long time. The fish that I have is Flower Horn, Red Texas. It's baby fish but the scales have just growing during these day. The first time I'm aware of these black spots on the skin of my fish is when I lighted the fluorescent lamp. It seemed to be small black surface when they unite each other. With the ordinary light, we can't see them. They all seemed to be formed under the skin. So I think it's a kind of fungus inside the body.  So, I put some anti-fungus capsule and some salt. As soon as I put some powder from the capsule, the water is turning green gradually. But, it seemed to me that the fungus are not faded away till 5 days after I use these capsule. Then, the fin of the fish become close and doesn't seem to work very well like before I put them into my tank. Almost all the time, he seemed to get itchy skin and he always rub his body with the undersurface of the tank very harshly. Starting from this time on, he can't even swim as much as he can and always stay calmly and quietly in one place for a very long time.  So, could you please answer my question? < Sure> What kind of fungus did he have? < I don't think he had a fungus but a bacterial infection instead. Fungus usually only attack dead or dying tissue. Bacteria may have initially attacked the fish and the fungus turned out to be a secondary infection.> What kind of treatment shall I take? If you know some way of curing this or some effective anti-fungus medicine, would you please let me know? < Once again I think it is bacterial. I would change 30% of the water and vacuum the gravel. then clean the filter. Once the tank is clean I would treat it with Nitrofuranace as per the directions on the package.> Is it a kind of fungus and how long it will take to completely recover from this suffering? < Recovery always depends on how quickly the fish is treated. Usually I think you should see some improvement in three days or you have the wrong medication.> Why has his fin been becoming close and close day by day? < As the infection spreads along the skin the fish tries to reduce its surface area to the bacteria.> I would be glad if I got your very detail answer. I'm looking forward to hearing from you in a near future. Can he died of fungus disease? Thank you so much. < Absolutely. The bacteria will attack the gills and suffocate the fish.-Chuck> 


Flowerhorn Cichlid Is Too fat My flower horn has an enormous stomach now and its not because of eating. He got really big at one time and couldn't move. Now he is swimming around a little more but can't get to his food and he also has like a white sack under his belly where I think his poop hole should be. What is wrong with him and what can I do to cure him? < Your Flowerhorn probably has an internal bacterial infection. I would recommend a 30% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. Treat the tank with Metronidazole as per the directions on the package. Early treatment is the key to a complete and total recovery.-Chuck>


Cichlids Fighting But now the flower horn is just staying at the bottom of the tank with her beautiful colors in place is this a disease only Flowerhorns get or is this normal? < It is a survival tactic. To color up and move around would invite an attack by the more dominant fish.> But she still eats but then goes back down. < She still has to eat but doesn't stay out in the open any more than she has too.> And also my red devil is hurting my Oscar now because last night before I went to bed I turned of the lights of the fish tank and then I saw my red devil hurting the Oscar to the bottom all the way to the top and the Oscar is not even fighting back! I can see many scares on him right now so what do you think I should do? I'm thinking of selling him or putting him in his own little fifty gallon or if not if you can help me in stopping him from doing all this stuff so help. Sean Thanks < Big cichlids get pretty territorial. Once they get on the rampage there really isn't too much you can do but separate them. Lowering the temp may help. But the red devil will always be hard to get along with.-Chuck>


Flowerhorns Mating Greetings, Well, I've got a cichlid which I called Canon. After that, I've got a flower horn who is Dranzer. I put them in the same tank, a ten gallon tank with a divider in it. A couple of days later, I found some eggs on Canon's part. I didn't mind it because it might not hatch. But three days later, it was filled with white fungus and was swept away. Another days later she laid eggs but the eggs were also filled with fungus. How can I keep fungus away? < The fungus is usually the result of infertile eggs.> Can a Flowerhorn and a cichlid mate? < A Flowerhorn is a man made cichlid that is a hybrid between three different species. It is possible it could breed with another Central American cichlid.> How can my Flowerhorn get good colors and a protruding head? < With good nutrition an good water quality you can get some pretty good results as long as the fish has the genes for those traits you desire.> How can I breed fishes? < Breeding cichlids is actually pretty easy. Make sure you have a pair and set them up with warm clean water. They will usually do the rest and even raise the fry.-Chuck> Hope for your reply, Nikki 


Flowerhorn needs a Bigger Hump Hey there I'm a Flowerhorn fancier. I have a question. My flowerhorn's forehead isn't big enough. What should I do/feed to make it bigger? Is it okay if I put pebbles in the tank of my flower horns? Signed, Mario < The hump on the forehead of Flowerhorns depends on a few different factors. The hump is a fat storage device for many male Central American cichlids from which the Flowerhorn was derived. Genetics plays a part of which you can't do anything about. I would cool the water down to 75 to 76 degrees. This will slow down the fish's metabolism so it will start storing some food as fat. Look for high quality pelleted fish food. Many lesser foods have fillers that are not as nutritious as they could be. Washed earthworms would be good too. Don't keep him in too large a tank. The extra activity will burn up fat. I would put a half inch layer of fine sand in the bottom instead of pebbles. The sand will act as a site for the good bacteria to help break down fish waste and food won't become trapped between the pores space of the sand.-Chuck>


SICK FLOWER HORN Dear Crew, Greetings! Almost a week ago, my flower horn's been swimming vertically. Right now, as I watch it in the aquarium, it's as if it's sleeping. I spoke to one hobbyist and he recommended that I put an antibiotic. To date, no improvement has been made. I already changed the water 25%. I've added salt as well. Another hobbyist said that it might have broken its spine. It looks like it's having a hard time  swimming.  Your advise would be very much appreciated. Sincerely, Denise < Sound like your flower horn may have contracted an internal bacterial infection. I would recommend a 30% water change, vacuum the gravel and clean the filter. Get the water up to 80 degrees F and treat with Metronidazole. The water should have no ammonia or nitrites and the nitrates should be under 25 ppm.-Chuck>


BREEDING FLOWERHORNS I have a three 3-month old flower horns. They have separate water tanks. One of the fish laid hundred of eggs yesterday. Do I have to put one male fish to make sure the eggs will hatch or these eggs will hatched by themselves? < Only in very rare instances will the eggs become viable.> How will I know their sexes? < Males are usually bigger and have longer fins.> How long will it take the eggs to hatch? < If the eggs are fertile they will hatch in three days at 80 degrees F.> How will I know that the eggs were not fertilized.  Hope you can help me.  MAR PANGAN OF THE PHILIPPINES  < In a day they will turn white and probably develop a white fungus over them.-Chuck> 


How to breed Flowerhorns Hello! I have a pair of flower horns. When I put them in the same tank, it seems that they are mating coz each of them are flaring to each other. After a day or two, I saw the eggs on the hatchery. However, after laying eggs, I noticed that my pets are now fighting? Which should I leave in the hatchery, the male or the female? For how long should I place one of them on the tank where the eggs were laid? Please help on this matter. Ive been experimenting 4x already and up to now, I cant them to hatch their eggs. Hoping for your immediate response. Thanks! Dale Dwayne < Flower horns are a man made fish that have been developed to show certain traits that are favorable to the Asian culture. If you want to save the eggs then they can be taken away from the parents and hatched artificially. Fill a 5 gallon tank with the same tank water that the parents are in. Remove the rock or stone with the eggs and place them in the 5 gallon tank with an airstone to provide aeration and current. Put a few drops of Methylene blue in the water to inhibit any fungus growth. Keep the water at 80 degrees. In three days the eggs will hatch and they will turn into a little wiggly mass of fry. At the end of three days the fry will have absorbed their egg sack and they will become free swimming. At this time they can be fed newly hatched brine shrimp and finely crushed flake food. If after a few attempts all the eggs die (Turn white) you either have two females or an infertility problem.-Chuck>


Baby Flowerhorn/red rose fish Hello, My Flowerhorn and red rose bred for the 2nd time and the eggs hatched 1  Dec. I removed the parents cause the 1st time they ate the babies the same day a   few hours later. What should I feed them? < They will become free swimming in a few days depending on the water temp. At that time they can be fed baby brine shrimp and finely crushed flake food.> And the best way in a 55 gal  tank. < When the fry become free swimming they will gather into a little school. The fry food can be dropped over them. they will feed as the food slowly drops down around them.-Chuck> Today I gave them a little red Tubifex worms. Thanks, Leo 

Flowerhorn Hello, I have a male Flowerhorn and female Rose flower that mated and laid eggs.   The Rose is swimming across the eggs in a rubbing motion while the Flowerhorn   approaches periodically. Which eggs are fertile the white or clear and how long will it take for the eggs to hatch? < The clear eggs are fertile and the white ons are dead and need to be removed by the female before they fungus up and destroy the rest of the eggs. They should hatch in three days at 80 degrees. Three days later the fry will become free swimming after absorbing their egg sac. At this time they need to be fed baby brine shrimp and crushed flake food.-Chuck.> Thanks, Leo

Re: Flowerhorn Hi Chuck, Thank you for your timely reply. What if the female does not remove the white eggs....should I try to do something? Today is the 3rd day! <Flowerhorns are actually a cross between a few different fish so it may not be that unusual to have a few non fertile eggs. If the eggs are fuzzy then they should have some Methylene blue or some other antifungicide added to the water. Add an airstone to the area to increase the water circulation. You could always use a 5 gallon aquarium and remove the eggs an continue to hatch them artificially. You should be seeing some wiggles by tomorrow.-Chuck> Leo

Flowerhorns hi Chuck, You are right the wiggles appeared this morning however very hard to see unless you focus. It is like vibrating gel! The female [Red rose] is scooping the fry in her mouth and spitting them back out. what does this mean? < She is probably cleaning them and moving them around.> The Flowerhorn sometimes picks in the area of the hatchery but eats what it puts in its mouth. The hatchery is now mixed with sand which is the tanks bottom glass. Could the fry survive without the parents if I take them out. <Sure. Fill another container with the same tank water and then get some clear air line tubing and siphon the babies to the new container. When they become free swimming, (in about three days), they can be fed baby brine shrimp and crushed flake food.-Chuck>> Is it safe to remove them of course using the same tank water. What do I have to feed the fry? Sorry for so many questions and emails first time grand-pa! Leo

Flowerhorns Hi Chuck, What will the young fry eat for the first 2 weeks? < The parents are not required and they can be fed crushed flake food and baby brine shrimp until they get up to 1/4 inch. Then they could be fed flake food and fine pellets.-Chuck> Do they need their   parents to feed them? Leo


Flowerhorns, filtration Hi, I have a pair of Flowerhorns which I have kept in a 3 feet tank with a divider of 2 feet for the male and one feet for the male. The divider is slightly raised from the bottom so that there is sufficient filtration . The problem I am facing is that the female fish goes under the divider and enters the male side the male then attacks the female ferociously and injures her. Why is the female Flowerhorn doing this. Secondly Is filtration enough to improve the water quality of the tank. < In nature, fish naturally school together for a number of reasons. Apparently your female has not learned yet that the male is not very social and is only interested in breeding. If the female is not ready to mate then he beats her up. Proper filtration will remove debris from the water and make it easier to see the fish. It helps convert fish waste from deadly ammonia and nitrite to a less toxic waste, nitrate. Go to Marineland.com and look at Dr. Tim's library on articles on filtration.-Chuck>


Flowerhorn questions from India Hi, my name is Rohan, I am an aquarist from India. I have mailed a few times and have been fortunate enough to receive quick and very good responses from you to which I am very grateful and thank you. I have a pair of Flowerhorns. I have a few enquires to ask you, concerning the about two. 1) When do I know that the Flowerhorns are ready to breed? < The male and female will be flaring at one another, their tubes from the anal region will become more prominent and they will have cleaned an area to lay their eggs.> 2) Whats the average size of the male & female when they are ready to breed? < They can breed as small as 4 inches.> 3) I have noticed that my female FH changes her body colour often (from pale to dark green), is this a cause for concern? < Flowerhorns are an artificial man-made fish. Their colors are a reflection of their mood, food and genetics.> 4) when going out for the week end how much should the fish be fed. < None. I never feed my fish while I am out of town for a week or less. Fish are cold blooded so I lower the water temp. to 75 degrees to cool them down and lower their metabolism so they won't be as hungry and will not breed or tear each other up while I am gone.> and lastly, 5) I read in a website (not yours) that you can underfeed the FH not over feed is it true? < You can always overfeed or underfeed your fish. I feed only enough food so that all of it is consumed in a few minutes once a day. Over feeding creates internal bacterial problems like bloat and dropsy. If you check out our website often then you have seen these emails with people who have fish like Oscars that are bloated and lethargic. These people thought that they could not over feed their Oscar.-Chuck> Hoping to get a reply soon. Thanking you, Rohan


Differential Flowerhorn growth Hi, This is a hobbyist from India. I have a pair of flower horns which I bought a month ago. I would like to ask the following questions : 1> I have noticed that the growth in the male is faster than that of the female is it natural or is some thing wrong with my female FH. < It is not unusual for cichlids to be sexually dimorphic according to size. The cichlids from which Flowerhorns were developed have larger males.> 2>I would like to know whether flower horns( in general any fishes) sleep, if they do when do they. 3>should I switch off the light in the aquarium during the night? < Fish sleep or at least rest. The lights should not be on all the time and they will benefit with a rest6 period.-Chuck> Hope to get reply. Thanking you, Rohan


Pearl Flower Horn My pearl flower horn is about 5 inches long and seems very healthy. However, about 1 1/2 weeks ago he developed a growth that looks like an intestine that hangs down behind the fin on his stomach. It got bigger for several days and now is about 3/4" long and hangs down right behind the fin. He acts healthy and eats well but that growth can't be ok. None of the aquarium people I have spoken to have any idea what it could be. He is developing well and is changing to a reddish color and should be a beautiful fish when he finishes developing. I have not moved him into the new 46 gallon tank I got him because I hope to provide treatment for him and the smaller tank is easier to do that with. Do you have any ideas about what this could be? < It sound like a prolapsed rectum. It may come back in over time if it doesn't get fungused or damaged. Try smaller but more frequent feedings so there won't be so much stress on his digestive system.-Chuck>


Flowerhorn pair behavior Respected sir/ madam, I recently brought a pair of flower horns from a local dealer (a male and female), male slightly bigger than the female (the male is about 8-10 cm long, the female 5-6cm long). Now I see the male attacking the female and the female has some scars on her body. should I now remove the female or is this a temporary action by the male. Hope to get a reply soon. < Remove her to another tank or he will kill her. Many times pair bonds are broken when fish are moved and need to be reestablished. Try dividing the tank and keep each one on its own side. When the female is ready to spawn she will begin to start to flare back at the male. You can try and put them together for a short time and see how it goes. Be aware that he can decide to kill her in just a few hours so only put them together when you are home watching them. Eventually when they start to breed again you can start leaving the female with the male, but there is no guarantee when large cichlids begin to breed.-Chuck> Thanking you , Rohan

Re: Separated Cichlids Respected sir/madam, I wish to thank you for giving me the solution for my problem so soon. I have as suggested by you. I have divided the tank into two by placing a glass piece in between the two, hopefully this solves the problem. One other thing I wish to ask is I was thinking of introducing a albino parrot fish with the male flower horn (of the same size), do you think its safe to do so & what are the signs to look for to separate them. Can I maintain the flower horn on dry worms alone. Well I once again thank you for your suggestion. Thanking you, < Big cichlids get very territorial, so much to the point that they don't even like some people in the same room with them. This makes them very personable but also a pain to match up with other fish. You can try and put them together. Rearrange all the decorations and put them together at night. It is best to do this if you are going to around for awhile to see how it goes. If they don't like each other you may need to get another tank. -Chuck> Rohan


Flowerhorn help PLEASE!! Hello, I think this is one of the most informative sites for Flowerhorns! I need help about my Flowerhorn (Louis). I've had him for about two wks now, and you'd think that it'll be already used to its environment. but it still gets flared black stripes. whenever someone walks in the room. I have Louis in a 10 gallon tank, with mint green rocks, and one plant/rock thing. When you peek in the room, I'll see Louis swimming around, all white with its black spots, but when he senses someone walking in the room. or coming. it darts to its rock and its stripes come out, I don't think it is hurt...it did jump out of the tank once, but even before that, the stripes would come.. what does this mean? < This is the fishes fright pattern and it is trying to blend in with its surroundings.> This is the second Flowerhorn I've had, the first one died, because it was a JUMPER and jumped out of its tank *twice.. the people who sold me the fish, never heard of Flowerhorns jumping, but so far, all the Flowerhorns I've brought home have jumped! I am considering returning him and getting more blood parrots, but I really love the way Flowerhorns look.. I am pretty frustrated! I feed my Flowerhorn floating pellets and bloodworms. PLEASE HELP! < Feed a very small amount of food every time you walk up to the tank. After a while she will associate you with food and will not be afraid any more. Try not to make too many sudden moves until your fish settles in. Give her an area to hide and she won't jump out.-Chuck> NuNu


Flowerhorn help Hi I've been addict in Flowerhorn fish since 2000 when I saw the flower horn in my friend the color is saw great and the hump is so big my question is what kind of natural food or live food will I feed to my flower horn in order to gain a giant and wonderful nuchal hump? <Try fresh washed earthworms. The hump is a storage unit for fat. > my fish don't like to eat a pellets of feeds like grandsumo. What diet will I Apply? < Try spectrum pellets. They are a high quality food that will bring out the color as well as encourage their growth of the hump. Fish seem to like these pellets long after they get tired of other types of pellets.-Chuck> My Flower horn is about 3-4 Months old Thank you and hope for your apply soon


Flower Horn Questions 4/27/04  <Hi, Pufferpunk here>  I recently found a Flower Horn here at my LFS marked as a 3" Firemouth (complete with red eyes and flower spots) Cichlid for $8.  <Wow, don't you love those finds?!>  I understand it isn't an evolved species, but a combination of many. Even so, my questions are about these parameters:  -it is in a 55 gallon by itself with XP2 for filter  -10% water change every other day with live plants in the gravel  -Rosy Red feeders (small), crayfish, anything I could find in a pond/river and generic Cichlid foods. Are these above points OK for this guy?  <Sounds ok, just make sure you feed lots of high protein foods for good coloration & the development of a nice big hump. Here's a good website for info: http://biofresh.tripod.com/haf/index2.html >.>  -a graduate school herpetology friend suggested putting 2-3 smaller  cichlids in with him to give the Flowerhorn's system a chance to make territorial hormones. This sounds crazy to me and seems quite evil and I won't do it, but is this valid at all? Will its body produce growth hormones to out-compete the others?  <It looks like all your Qs should be answered at that link I gave you. As Flower Horn is from the South American Cichlid family, this fish is very territorial. Thus, they are very aggressive in nature. Co-existing with another fish is not advisable, especially smaller fish. Some parties have claimed that we can "play" with the Flower Horn. In actual fact, the Flower Horn is actually trying to get rid of the "intruder" (be it a stick or a person's hand). Therefore, it is advisable that we keep our hands to ourselves as the fish has quite a nasty bite depending on the size of the fish.>  Thanks for any info  Ian  <Good luck with your great find! ~PP>


Re: Flower Horn Questions  Thanks for the great atta boys, but when the question came up about the hormonal changes, all I got was a rehashing of what I read on the main site. Would anyone else know about territorial changes? Even Dr. Bob?  Thanks again, and great info!  Ian  <Haven't run across anything in popular literature concerning nuchal humps of this or other cichlids (or other fishes who show this sort of growth) and their endocrinological states. Perhaps you will investigate the relationship between these two for your doctoral or master's work. Bob Fenner>


I Need my Drugs Good day! I have lost my notebook having some list of drugs/vitamins for Flowerhorns. Can you give me a drug that enhances the nuchal hump and the color of the Flowerhorn.  < The hump located on the forehead of the males is a result of excess fat being stored. A well balanced diet with a little extra fat will produce a well endowed hump. Spectrum fish food as well as Marineland foods will produce excellent color. Be aware that the flower horn is a cross between two different species and some of the color may be due to genetics and not by diet or environmental conditions. Look at the Zoomed bulbs for increasing the colors too. Some of the plant bulbs really bring out the red and yellows on some fish. -Chuck>


Flowerhorn Cichlids WWM, good day! I would like ask some question about Flowerhorn. Can you give me some vitamins or drug that is use for  color enhancing? < Spectrum makes an excellent food for enhancing the colors of fish without hormones> What's the new latest kind of Flowerhorn out in the market? < Flowerhorns are an artificial fish. They are hybridized from three different species of cichlids. Even though they do spawn and are viable they are considered artificial mutations. Currently the market is falling for Flowerhorns. Check with Aquabid.com for new color varieties.-Chuck> I hope you can answer my questions? thanks...... Leugim

Flowerhorn Cichlids WWM, Hi! I am a new hobbyist of cichlids. Will you help me for I am in need of new breeds of Flowerhorn for my collections. < The Flowerhorn cichlid is an artificial fish that does not exist in the wild. It is a cross between a couple different fish that happens to produce fertile fry. They were somewhat marketable for a few years but the market seems to be dropping fast, at least hear on the west coast. The new breeds or color forms you may be seeking may not still be available. I would recommend a web site called Aquabid.com. It is a web site dedicated to buying and selling all kinds of fish. Hopefully you can find what you are looking for there.> What does LFS  mean? <Sorry don't know. I don't keep flower horns and am not familiar with the LFS notation.><<Livestock Fish Store, or such>> can you give me at least 5 new breeds of Flowerhorn fish? < Check the site mentioned above or do a google search on the internet for more info. I have seen one book put out on these fish but don't know how available it is -Chuck> Sincerely Yours, Leugim

Super Red Syn Flowerhorns Dear Mr. Robert, <Hi, Gage here this afternoon.> Can you send me a detailed information regarding Super Red Syn Flowerhorns? Appreciate also if you can send some pics. <I checked with Bob and a few others on the crew, we really do not have much information on these fish besides what is at the link below.   http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/flowerhorns.htm I would try using the Google.com to search for more information on this particular color strain.> Thank you for your assistance. Fatima Valle  


Injured Flowerhorn Hi, <Hello> I think my Flowerhorn is paralyzed already... it's  beautiful fish with us for about a year, until 2 weeks ago, my mum played with it and it jumped too high and hit the top of the tank and then fell flat on it's side till now... <Yeowch> the colour also changed black... <A very strong sign of nerve damage.> the side is very arched... how...?? pls reply ASAP... pls help... thinks... <My best guess is that he must have caused some injury (perhaps spinal?) to himself when he hit the top of the tank.  This might explain the black color, which is very indicative of nerve damage, though it may also be just bruised or burned.  Unfortunately, there's not much that can be done with such injuries, other than maintaining pristine water quality and hoping for the best, or, in extreme cases, euthanizing the fish to put it out of its misery.  I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but I fear that there's not really anything you can do for him, besides try to make him comfortable.  With deepest sympathy,  -Sabrina>


Flowerhorns WWM, I want to how to distinguish the sex of the Flowerhorn, <The males will develop a larger hump on their foreheads, I would not be surprised if you could the difference by their finnage, or even venting them, but I am not positive.> and how to cure white spots  and discoloration of the fish. <If by white spots you mean Ich, your fish are sick, sick fish are not going to display good coloration.  I used Quick Cure on my Horns, seemed to do the job (primarily formaldehyde with a dash of malachite green).  IME I have never seen a fish with the healing abilities of a Flowerhorn, I had one get sucked up into a filter for an unknown amount of time, I got him out, thought he was doomed, the next day I could not tell which was the damaged one.  Once you get the parasites cleared up, color enhancing food, a varied diet, excellent water quality (I cannot stress that point enough), good lighting and a dark substrate should bring out their colors.  If you have a group of these fish in a tank you need to watch out for aggression, these are very aggressive fish.> And what is latest Breed of Flowerhorns. <Not sure on this one, it seems like the LFS are always making up new names and overcharging for these fish.  Check out FlowerFish.com  Best of luck, Gage> Thank you very much.... Very Truly Yours, Leugim

Monster fish by Arlina Arshad  IF YOU think luohan fish are ugly, just look at this specimen with its Mick Jager lips and ball-like body. Probably the result of breeding gone wrong, say marine biologists and those who rear fish. Enthusiasts have been breeding them, then dumping the 'mistakes' in ponds and rivers. Two breeders and three other people who rear fish admitted they'd done this. The Sunday Times also spoke to fishermen who have spotted sick and dead luohan, four aquarium owners, two marine biologists, and officials from agencies that have to deal with this problem. Two luohan breeders said they sought to breed exotic-looking luohan, with blue or white eyes instead of red, or all-blue or all-red bodies instead of the usual red-green-black. When the experiments went awry, they had to get rid of these mutants with 'elephant-trunk lips' and 'monkey faces'. Neither would agree to be named, fearing flak from fish lovers and repercussions from the authorities. Said one breeder: 'Some fish had bloated bodies and no humps on the heads; others were skinny and had no fins. What do you expect me to do with them?' The other one said: 'At least I release them in the water, not like some I know who flush them down toilet bowls!' Abandoning fish is an offence under the Birds and Animals Act, punishable by a $10,000 fine and 12 months' jail. 'This is an act of cruelty,' said Dr Leow Su Hua, head of the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore's animal welfare education. Dumping luohan into public ponds can also turn the ponds' ecology upside down, because they are aggressive and breed quickly. Said Professor Chou Loke Ming of the National University of Singapore's department of biological sciences: 'They may outcompete for food with local species and take over ponds and rivers.' The National Parks Board (NParks) and Public Utilities Board have found reptiles and non-native fish in ponds, lakes and reservoirs. Said an NParks spokesman: 'The released fish may not survive. They could carry disease and this would affect the native animals in the ponds.' Luohan fish, also known as Flowerhorns, are believed to be descended from wild cichlids. A year or two ago, they were all the rage because people thought they brought good luck. High-quality ones, characterized by red eyes and large humps on their heads, went for as much as $8,000. But now, they are no longer hot. One breeder said he'd released about 100 into Tengeh and Punggol rivers in the last three years. He said: 'Some had holes in their heads and others had eyes popping out of their sockets.' 'One had a diseased mouth and rotting lips like this,' he said, turning his lips inside out. 'I couldn't save it; it was too sick.' Aquarium owners also say people leave buckets of luohan at their doors in the dead of the night. Madam Shirley Lim, owner of aquarium shop Yun Feng in Pasir Ris, said she would receive 'fish mail' three times a month. 'Nobody wants them any more. They're being chucked into dustbins like those unwanted babies in China. I could sell one at $4,000 last time, but now if I can sell one for $20, I'm very lucky,' she said. IP Address: This message was forwarded to you from Straits Times Interactive ( http://straitstimes.asia1.com.sg


Buying, shipping Flowerhorns Dear sir/ madam, <Bob F. here> We want to buy from your store about Flower horn ?Lou Han, I'm from USA  some to do business fish store in Indonesia. Can you ship to Indonesia if I need to pay with my credit card for international payment. If you can do, please reply me soon and I will choose for the models. Thanks and Regards <Mmm, we don't sell Flowerhorns, cichlids, or actually any livestock. Please see this article re this "species" here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/flowerhorns.htm Mr. Ong's e-address is linked there. You might contact him re this fish. Bob Fenner>


Questions about foreign elements in tank (Flowerhorns) Hi. Have a question. I have two Cichlids (photos attached with the mail because I don't know their breed. They were given to me by my ex-neighbor). They been with me for almost 1 year.   <Gorgeous fish! I dont know the exact species but you should be able to find out by searching for Cichlid at http://www.fishbase.org or by asking at http://cichlidforums.com/ > The problem I'm facing now is that about 2 weeks after I change the tank water, small white thread-like worms start appearing in the tank. And because of this, I've got to change the water once every 2-3 weeks to get rid of the worms.  May I know what these worms are and how do I get rid of them? <They are actually fairly common and are completely harmless. Please check out http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/fwinvertfaqs.htm as there are some good posts on them there.> How do I prevent them from appearing again? They are very unsightly and causes my fishes to twitch, and I'm afraid they may affect the health of my fishes. <Nope, they shouldnt affect the health of your fish.> And changing the water too often is not good for the fishes too.   <Actually, doing a water change (20-25%) every 2-4 weeks is a good idea and helps keep your fish healthy> Also, is it advisable to have some pebbles or sand in the tank for the fishes to play with? <Most Cichlids will dig in the substrate and really enjoy it.> Their tanks used to have some sand and pebbles but the fish wastes always get caught in between the sand. This makes cleaning difficult and cleaning cannot be thorough. <Get a gravel vacuum and use it when you do your water changes.> My fishes do not like to eat dry food and pellets that are easily available in the super marts. what can I give them then?  <Most fish stores offer frozen foods such as Krill, Bloodworms, or Mysis Shrimp. Cichlids will often take to these foods very well. Another option is salad shrimp from you grocery store. I have a large Cichlid that was spoiled on feeder goldfish to the point that he wouldnt accept anything else. I tried him on the shrimp and he loves them, he even eats right out of our fingers (as long as were careful because hell gladly take the finger too! *G*). Just make sure to cut them up into sizes that your fish can handle and make sure theyre fully thawed before feeding.> I appreciate the info and advice. Thanks Regards, Chen Ying


Sponsoring an article Hi! <Hello> My name is Koay Al Vin and I represent FlowerFish.com. We would like to contribute an article on WetWebMedia.com. Heard of the "flower horn" fish which is taking Asia by storm? We are the leading exporter from Malaysia and would like to promote this new hybrid. We are getting tons of enquiries from the US and all over the Western world everyday and it seems that even though its a hybrid fish, hobbyists from all over the world are crazy over it. A good article about this fish on your site will be very informative and will be an exciting piece of news for your site's visitors. We have articles on www.aquariumfish.net and even the New York Times are doing an article on us soon. Check this out : http://www.aquariumfish.net/catalog_pages/cichlids_neotropical/flower_horn_fish.htm This article is one of the most visited page on the site. If you are interested, we can cooperate and write up an even more exciting article for WetWebMedia.com. Thanks for your time and consideration and hope to hear from you soon! Sincerely, Koay Al Vin <Please send your article along. Bob Fenner>


Sponsoring an article Hi Bob! Thanks for your response! In fact, there is already an article on WetWebMedia! http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/flowerhorns.htm I was not really aware of it because it was worked out by my previous colleague, Mr Ong. <Ah, yes> Anyway, Mr. Ong has just left our company. I am wondering if there are anything else that we can add to your site for your visitors because of the great response for the Flowerhorn fish. I am sure your visitors will appreciate more articles/photos/promotions, etc on Flowerhorn. Please advice and I am sure we can work something good for both of us. Thanks again and my apologies for taking your time. Hope to hear from you soon. Sincerely, Koay Al Vin FlowerFish.com <Actually, only this update. The article, if memory serves, does list, link your business to this fish/enterprise. Hope to see you at Aquarama. Bob Fenner>


Re: Flower Horn Fish (Cichlasoma - Cichlid family) Hi Bob, <Hey Ong> Thanks for the article uploaded on your site. If you require anything that I could be of assistance, do inform me about it. Will be glad to help you out. <Thank you. Would you like to add to your name for the credit?> Keep in touch and thanks again for your kind consideration. Best regards, Ong www.FlowerFish.com <Please do send along updates, any other materials you'd like posted. Bob Fenner>


Flower Horn Fish (Cichlasoma - Cichlid family) Hi, <Hello> My name is Ong and I represent  FlowerFish.com. We are one of the largest and most advance Flower Horn Fish breeder / exporter in Penang, Malaysia. As you already knew, Flower Horn Fish is still relatively new, unlike Asia (particularly in the region of South East Asia) where the aquatic world was taken by storm within the last two years. Please visit our website at www.FlowerFish.com for more info about us. <Yes, just saw them a year and a half ago, first at Aquarama in Singapore> I would love to sponsor an article for your site about Flower Horn Fishes and I believe it would very informative to your visitors and something new and refreshing to the aquatic hobbyist. <Great! Would like to post it... for your and our readerships benefit. Please do send what you'd like along. Oh, we do have a pic of a Flower Horn posted on the neotropical cichlid page on WetWebMedia.com's Freshwater subweb.> Would you also consider trading links with our site at www.FlowerFish.com . <Sure (yes). Will post later today on Freshwater Links page> Major search engines now rely heavily on the number of related sites that link to your page when they index it. <Agreed> Please visit our site and let's trade reciprocal links. <Okay> Here's our site title, URL and a short description: Flower Horn Fish Resource Center www.FlowerFish.com We provide Flower Horn Fish / Luo Han resources. Thank you for your consideration! <Thank you for your involvement. Hope to see you in May in SG. Bob Fenner> Best Regards, Ong www.FlowerFish.com FlowerFish.com 22C & D, Gerbang Midlands, 10250 Penang, Malaysia. Phone : +604-227 8333 Fax: +604-228 9833 E-mail : info@FlowerFish.com

Re: Flower Horn Fish (Cichlasoma - Cichlid family) Hello Bob, Thanks for your consideration. Sorry I did not reply you promptly as I was finishing the write up which is attached in the zip file. Do let me know if it's ok on your side. I tried to be more informative rather than commercialize so it would be more interesting for your visitors. Anyway, I would appreciate if you can provide a link or a banner (which is attached as well) to www.FlowerFish.com from the article. I have also uploaded your website link to http://www.flowerfish.com/links.html . Let me know if you require any changes to the description. Here's my link description: Title: Flower Horn Fish Resource Center URL: http://www.flowerfish.com/ Description: A complete Flower Horn Fish / Luo Han resources with huge photo galleries, information on how to import and export fish, breeding and lots of Q&A / FAQ on behavior, diseases and techniques of care. One of the fastest growing Cichlid Hybrid site !!! FYI, we have been exporting these fishes to USA, especially in the Californian region. I believe they are doing quite well as each orders are have become more regular. Are you speaking of the Aquarama 2003 in S'pore which is on the end of May? I'll be making some plans about it soon. Currently there's a Flower Horn exhibition in KL, Malaysia which is Aquatex and we have sponsored a few really nice fishes as prices for the visitors. Anyway, you are from USA correct? How's the Flower Horn market from your side? Thanks and I'm really looking forward to meet up with you then. Best regards, Ong www.FlowerFish.com <Thank you for sharing Ong. Have placed your article, images here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/flowerhorns.htm Bob Fenner>


Mystery Cichlid at Aquarama 01 Hi Bob Do you still remember the new breed of cichlid with a hump head that was on show at the last Aquarama in Singapore? <Yes, did send the pix in I shot at Aquarama last year to the hobby mag.s> They have been well received and certain specimens with nice colours have been reportedly sold for as much as S$70,000. It is not advisable to walk around in certain parts of Malaysia holding them in plastic bags or you will be robbed at knife point. <Thanks for the heads up. Can/will send you the piece (in German) re that cichlid... and my fave image as a jpeg if you'd like. Bob F.> Perry


A dihybrid "new cichlid" out of the Far East... this pic shot a month back at the Aquarama show in Singapore... is likely (my guess) a Vieja (formerly Cichlasoma) maculicauda (Black Belt) and Cichlasoma trimaculatum cichlid cross... a beauty, but still a cross.                     
Re: What is this "new cichlid"? Something bifasciatum? Not according to fishbase.org
Bob, This fish will sell well in Singapore or in a Buddhist country. The bump on the head resembles the forehead of one of the Buddhist Arhats by the name of Luo Han. Imagine owning a fish that reminds you of a Buddhist deity that you are worshipping. Will bring plenty of good luck and fortune. Perry <Thanks for this Perry. Will post with image on our sites. Bob Fenner>  Re: What is this "new cichlid"?  Dear Bob, our expert for American cichlids Uwe Werner wrote me, that he feels the cichlid is not a natural form, but an Asian-bred form of Cichlasoma amphilophus. He says that there is total red specimens too. Here in Germany the sun is shining like in Southern California. Take care Werner <Ah, danke shoen. Will post your input to this image on our site (www.WetWebMedia.com). More images, articles on their way to you at das Aquarium. Wiedersen. Bob Fenner>

Kirin (not the beer) Hi! How is everyone this evening? Good I hope. <Very well!> I was just browsing the web for info on my new baby Texas Cichlids, and I came across a website dedicated to that new hybrid you have a pic of in the section on neo tropical cichlids. According to the info on the site, it's a Kirin. And yes, it is a hybrid. It's a Cyanoguttatum or Carpinte and Trimaculatus cross. It's supposed to bring prosperity with it's bump head, good fortune with it's jeweled speckles symbolizing wealth, and scare away evil spirits with its red eyes. The website address is www.kirin.com.sg/species.html Just what the world needs, another cichlid hybrid from the far east. At least it's not as hideously ugly as the parrot fish. SMILE). I have a parrotfish myself, and I love his funny looking little face. Goodnight, Kristen:) <Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. There are some truly striking looking fish on that webpage, though. -Steven Pro>

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