primal drive for existence on this planet—
in other words, they live to eat! Such an
appetite may, in fact, be more of an appetite
for destruction, as they have been known
to eat themselves to death.
Therefore, feeding should be frequent,
but just to satiation. Usually three to four
times weekly, these cichlids should be
allowed to semi-gorge themselves until
their bellies are slightly rounded off. On the
“off” days they should still be offered food,
but in vastly smaller amounts. The amount
of food needed to curb the hunger—and
the desire to kill all others that swim in
front of them—will have to be gauged by
the hobbyist because every specimen is
slightly different compared to the next.
Catalog of Species
Here are some currently valid species
that may be found in the hobby.
Usually found in small groups (juveniles
and young adults) or pairs (sexually
mature adults), L. attenuatus is a pleasant
little cichlid that grows to about 6 inches
in total length.
Growing to around a foot in length,
L. cunningtoni is a solitary species
that prefers to swim close to the
sandy bottom. Due to their large size
and formidable speed, this species
readily hunts down smaller fishes
in the open water habitat. They dig
large crater-type nests, even when
rockwork sufficient for spawning sites
exists close by.
By far the most commonly encountered
species of the genus in nature as well as
in aquariums, L. elongatus is a beautifully
marked cichlid that grows just a bit larger
than a foot long in total. They are voracious
and efficient predators that pursue their
prey in open water and around submerged
(POLL & STEWART 1977)
At home deep in rock crevices, L. kendalli
is not usually found in the open water
habitat. Solitary in nature just like the other
members of the group, L. kendalli is very
territorial, and hobbyists wishing to keep
them should only stock one per aquarium.
SCHELLY ET AL. 2007
A newly described species, L. mimicus
resembles L. elongatus in color and pattern.
However, when seen next to each other, they
appear very different. Native to the Zambian
coast of Lake Tanganyika from Kasenga to
Kapembwa, this beautiful cichlid is a must-have for the diehard cichlid collector. Their
care in aquariums, as well as their behavior
and habits, are close to that of L. elongatus
and L. nkambae (below).
L. NKAMBAE (S TAECK 1978)
Endemic to the southern end of the
lake, L. nkambae is a remarkably beautiful
cichlid. A smaller member of the genus,
growing to about 6 inches TL, this species