The Pseudotropheus Saulosi Cichlid comes from Lake Malawi in Africa. Along Taiwan reef, Saulosi can be found at depths of 7-15 meters. Large schools roam the rocky areas of the reef, scavenging for food among the algae growing on the rocks. These schools contain only yellow fish. However, not all of them are females, there may also be males that have kept the female colors. Males that display the full blue coloration are those that have a territory claimed, and they seem rare when compared to the quantities of yellow schools. Adult males are blue with black bars and sub-adult juveniles and females are yellow. Even though they are considered a dwarf mbuna cichlid only reaching about 10cm as adults, they still need a tank that is at least 200 litres or larger to provide swimming room and to allow you to keep them in groups. Keeping the Saulosi Cichlid in groups of 5 or more will help with aggression issues from males.
Unlike most other Pseudotropheus species, both male and female Saulosi have attractive colours. They are all born yellow and only the males become blue when they get sexually mature. As this is completely opposite to the colour patterns of Pseudotropheus lombardoi it’s not sensible to keep them in the same aquarium, as this only causes brutal harassment of the females. Also larger Mbuna as a company is best to be avoided. Sometimes carrying females can develop male colouration too, probably to look agressive in orded to scare off potential fry robbers or to claim a territory to safely release the fry.
Breeding and feeding is quite similar to that of other Mbuna. As they eat algae in nature, a vegetable diet with an additional protein snack (krill, mysis, artemia, chopped shrimp, … but NO mammal meat!) every now and then is recommended. These Mbuna breed like rabbits, so if you provide many hiding places (many small rocks) in the aquarium, you’ll soon get an overcrowded aquarium.
Saulosi are a maternal mouthbrooder. The male will select a breeding site, it will usually be on the sandy bottom. He may, or may not, dig a pit in the sand down to the aquarium bottom. This pit may be up against a large rock, or it may not. They don’t seem too finicky. Once his breeding site is picked out, and a female is ready to spawn, he will display by shaking in front of the female. (Note if a male is shaking in the same way in front of another male, he is displaying his dominance. The subdominant male will clamp his fins and lose his color as a sign of submission.) After displaying for the female, he will attempt to lead her back to his spawning site by swimming away, but shaking his tail in a manner only seen during spawning. Once the spawn is complete, the female will hold the eggs in her mouth until the fry are able to swim and forage for themselves. This is usually 13-18 days. The female will take food into her mouth during the brooding cycle, however, it may be to feed her fry as much as it is to feed herself. Brood sizes will usually be less than 20 fry, and 10-15 is most common.
Other care tips: Saulosi should be kept with other mbuna approximately their size. Labidochromis species make good tank mates. Larger, more aggressive, mbuna species should be avoided, as well as any species that has the blue or yellow colourings, if stocking Saulosi in your tank. □
- Species – Pseudotropheus Saulosi
- Common Name – Saulosi
- Origin – Lake Malawi
- Diet – Omnivore/Herbivore
- PH Range – Alkaline 7.5 – 8.5
- Water Type – Hard
- Temperature – Tropical 24°c
- Breed Type – Mouth brooder
- Current Size – approximately 5cm (Grows to approximately 10cm)
- Sex – Un-sexed