- Scientific name: Neolamprologus brichardi
- Common name: Lyretail cichlid, Fairy cichlid
- Group: Cichlids
- Habitat: Africa; Lake Tanganyika (from Rutunga to Burundi).
- Size: 10 cm.
- Biotope: Caves along the rocky bottom, near the shoreline.
- Social behavior: A peaceful fish, that outside of spawning times, likes to form schools. Provide retreats so that alienated fish can find shelter. Pairing occurs during the spawning season. Forms a nuclear family.
- Diet: Live, crustaceans, insect larvae, aquatic insects, Tubifex, flakes, pellets.
- Breeding: Very easy
- Tank: Minimum 100 litres
- Population: 1 couple for 100 litres
- Decoration: Use a rocky set-up with caves, crevices, and tunnels. A retreat for each is important. Use a coral sand substrate. Leave open swimming areas.
- Temperature: 25-26 °C
- pH: 7,5-9
- Hardness: 8-25 NK°
- Lifespan: 8-10 years
Description: A beautiful fish, the base color is tan, with small yellow scales near the start of the tail fin. The tail, dorsal and anal fins are the same as the base color and they are fringed with a blue / white edge, extending along the elongated tips of the tail fin, which really highlight the lyretail. A dark bar runs from the eye, back to the gill cover. A bright gold spot is located just above this bar.
Like all true Tanganyikan set ups the tank should be decorated with a crushed coral or similar substrate and contain lot of rocks that form caves and crevices. This is especially true for the brichardi as a retreat for each fish is a must. The rocks must be firmly anchored as these fish will dig a lot and can disrupt the aquascape and possibly hurt themselves or the aquarium. Provide open areas for swimming. Plants can be used and will not be eaten but should be placed carefully as their digging will continually uproot them. Peaceful for a cichlid they should be kept in groups as they will school outside of breeding time. Feeding is not a problem as they will accept all types of flake and frozen food, in nature they eat small animals. Good filtration is a must and frequent partial water changes are a necessity as well.
One of the easier Lake Tanganyika cichlids to breed the brichardi is monogamous, meaning that they pair off for life. They are cave spawners and will produce around 100 fry per spawn. Excellent parents they will tend to their young for months and will take care of several spawns at the same time. If the tank becomes overcrowded with fry the parents recognize this and won't lay so many eggs on the next spawn or rarely they will eat their young to make room for the next batch. They fry are small and grow slowly but will do well if fed baby brine shrimp and finely crushed flake food.
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