baenschi (common name: "New Yellow Regal Peacock") is a
classic Aulonocara. In nature it will reach 10 cm while in the
aquarium it may become considerably bigger (even 15 cm is not rare
for adult males in large tanks). Needs a substrate of small pebbles
or fine sand. Some tough plants may be also used in the tank, such
as Anubias, Vallinserias, Cryptocorynes and Saggitaria. They thrive
in alkaline, moderately hard water (pH range 7.5 - 8.4, GH > 10).
It is better kept alone (in species tanks) or in community tanks
without any other Aulonocara females. Cross breeds very easily
mainly because the females of all Aulonocara species are almost
identical. This species sometimes poses a problem for the fish
keeper. Too peaceful to be housed with similarly sized mbuna, it is
too small to be kept with Malawi haps (especially piscivores). Very
popular due to its spectacular vivid colors.
spectacular close up photos were taken in April 2000 by hobbyist Dale
Paulter, from Kitchener, Ontario, Canada. Dale has been a fish
keeper for 2 1/2 years and is a member of CRLCA. He currently runs
13 tanks ranging in size from 10 to 60 gallons and this is his
beloved species. This pair is housed in a 60 gallon tank (one male
with 4 females). This photo was taken during the fourth spawning of
this particular female while the male has already produced over 300
fry all thriving at various sizes. Tankmates include three
Synodontis petricola and one sailfin marble pleco.
shots: 200 ASA film, 50 mm lens (used as an 100 mm short telephoto
with a 2X converter), f/11, 1/60 sec, Vivitar 285 flash unit. The
camera (Minolta SRT101) was mounted on a tripod. Distance less than
page for more spectacular spawning photos.