Scientific name: Maylandia estherae OB
Previous name: Pseudotropheus estherae OB
habitat: Rocky environments and reefs.
the lake: Feeds on algue that grows on the rocks and also the small
invertebrates that live between the algue. the periodical presence of
plankton in the open water is also appreciated.
the aquarium: A mix of quality pellets, flakes, krill, artemia, etc fed
sparingly. No mammal meat!
Behaviour in my aquarium: The dominant male defends his territory
fiercely against all other Mbuna.
mates: Can be kept with other mid-sized Mbuna with preferably another
cooler pattern to reduce mutual aggression. Always be careful to prevent
crossbreeding with similar species. Who needs another useless hybrid
Aquarium: At least a tank of >300L with a sufficient amount of
rocks and caves. A sand bottom, pH between 7.5 - 8.5, temperature about 25°C
Maylandia estherae OB male in my aquarium
This Mbuna will most probably be found in greater
numbers in our tanks than in the wild, mainly because these OB morphs are
specially bred. I got this fish from a friend who urgently needed to get rid
of these *sweeties* because they dominated her whole tank. They were
transferred to my Mbuna tank, where they settled in. This time they were not
able to get control over the aquarium, as the Maylandia msobo are the
absolute and undisputed leaders of their community.
The OB (orange-blotched) female with the typical orange body and the obvious
Grazing algae is *the* natural way to feed for these cichlids. Of course
it's very nice and rewarding to observe this in the aquarium at home. This
should be an additional reason to give green algae a chance in a Mbuna
setup, instead of trying to eradicate them with all possible aids.
Text and photos by Frank Panis / MCH
New photos by Boyan
Female M. estherae OB morph (right) and Melanochromis cyaneorhabdos (left).
A carrying female M. estherae OB morph. Click on the image for a high resolution
Another shot of the carrying female M. estherae OB morph. Click on the image for
a high resolution photo.
A juvenile M. estherae OB morph. Click on the image for a high resolution photo.