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Description
Uaru Cichlid
(Uaru amphiacanthoides)
Quick Care FactsCare Level: Easy
Temperament: Semi-aggressive
Maximum Size: 10"
Minimum Tank Size: 70 gallons
Water Conditions: 75-85° F, KH 8-10, pH 5.5-7.4
Diet: Omnivore
Origin: Amazon, South America
Family: Cichlidae
Species: Uaru Cichlids
Aquarium Type: Cichlid-New-World
Species Information
Found throughout the backwaters of the Amazon basin, the Uaru Cichlid is a staple food fish to natives living in the region. Due to the locals reliance on this species as a source of food, they are less commonly exported to the aquarium hobby. However, the Uaru Cichlid makes an excellent aquarium species as they tolerate a wide variety of water conditions and will readily consume a variety of food items.
Adult Uaru amphiacanthoides typically reach about 10 inches in length in the aquarium, while they can reach about 12 inches in the wild. Despite their medium to large size, the Uaru Cichlid is a peaceful species that can be kept with a wide range of other medium to large Cichlid species.
Adult Uaru bodies are generally a green-ish brown color with a blotchy area of black located on their sides, while juveniles are a mottled version of the adult coloration. While Uaru are very common within the Amazon basin, they are not commonly found within the aquarium trade. However, they are exported with some regularity and can be found both from LFS and online sources from time to time.
Aquarium Care
Uaru Cichlids are relatively peaceful species that can be kept with a wide variety of New World Cichlid species. They do best in aquariums with plenty of open swimming areas, along with some cover provided by driftwood, rocky formations, clay pots or fake plants (they will eat most live plants).
They prefer warm soft water environments with a pH around 5.5 and water temperatures between 80° and 84°. However, they will adjust to a variety of aquarium conditions if acclimated slowly. While the Uaru Cichlid is not too aggressive towards it's tank mates, it will eat any small fish, crustaceans, invertebrates or live plants that it can fit into it's mouth.
Feeding & Nutrition
Uaru Cichlids have become as abundant within the Amazon because as they have because they will eat practically any plant based or meaty food items. They are equally as easy to feed within the aquarium environment as they will readily consume most any commercial foods geared towards freshwater fish species.
Favorite food items include: live plants, pellet foods, flakes, crisps, worms and vegetable based wafers and sticks. Newly hatched fry will consume a slime that their parents produce on the side of their bodies. They will quickly graduate to crushed flake foods, baby brine shrimp, algae and Cyclop-eeze.
Uaru Cichlids will not only eat a wide variety of plants leaves, but will consume the stalks of many plant species as well.
Breeding Information
The Uaru Cichlid is a substrate spawner that will lay many hundreds of eggs during a single spawn. They are somewhat difficult to sex and pair, thus most hobbyists keep a small goupr of them and allow them to pair off on their own.
Once paired the Uaru Cichlids should be moved to their own aquarium for spawning, as like most New World Cichlids a spawning pair will be very aggressive towards other Cichlids in the aquarium. Spawning aquariums should have a soft sandy substrate along with some clay pots or driftwood for cover.
After a successful spawn the parents should be removed after approximately 2 weeks. During the first 2 weeks the fry will eat a slime from their parents bodies, but will quickly grow large enough to eat baby brine shrimp or Cyclop-eeze.
It is at this time that the parents should be removed from the aquarium so that they do not eat the young fry. Uaru Cichlids grow quickly and will reach 1 to 2 inches in size within 4 to 6 weeks.
Additional Photos