Zebra Convict Cichlids

Convict Zebra CichlidConvict cichlids have two other names. One is more preferred, even though it is less common than the species most well know name. The more preferred name is Zebra Cichlid.

Taking care of the zebra cichlid is easy. Zebra convict cichlids grow to be five to six inches long. The feminine expression in this species remains. The word remains is used because most species start out as female, until at various points in pre-birth, pre-hatch stages hormones change some females into males. This is true of most species with two generally separate sexes a few inches smaller in physical length.

These fish are considered very tough. Larger fish in your tank will have a hard time bullying or eating it.

If the pH is steady convict or zebra cichlid can live comfortably in the 6 8 range.

These creatures like temperatures between 60° to 80° F which equals to 20°to 27° C.

This naming issue is specially important since convicts no longer wear stripes. So, the visual reference is already being lost to antiquity to the current grade school generation. This is a generation who associate a full body suit or mechanics work wear that is primarily hunters orange with the idea of being imprisoned.

A necessary reminder is that hunters orange, and what now is also convicts orange is used as a color because it isn’t found naturally among the colors in nature on land.

In the case of the hunter, this means not being shot by other hunters. That is mistaken for game animals by other humans.

Zebra Convict Cichlids protecting their fry

For this same reason, this color that visually stands out is chosen for convicts so that they will be noticed easily in woods or any other terrain.

The species Archocentrus nigrofasciatus that is more commonly referred to as convict cichlid, and less commonly (although very common) referred to as Zebra Cichlid needs to hold with function over form. Since most people in the coming years will understand the zebra reference, and sooner than later the convict ref will be drawing on too vague of an icon from the past, the convict reference should be de-emphasized; and the zebra reference should be the focal point for visual reference.

If people from the 18th century start time traveling and need to reference what they are seeing in contemporary reef tanks. We can add a side note for them.

But until then, making sure that common names of animals make sense to immediate future generations is part of the responsibility of chronographers in the present era.

For the sakeof search engines, the convict term is necessary until the term falls into iconographic irrelevance and the zebra nomenclature survives it.

It is important to suggest that the convict moniker is not just for the stripes alone. Since this fish is so able to take care of its own against fish twice its size; a poetic license is warranted in adding the convict moniker.

However, most prison violence is based on a need to be violent to make a point in order erecta border around ones personal space. Not unlike a reef tank at all.

Which context will carry into the next generation of reef tank enthusiast remains to be seen.

But one hopes no one names the next species of florescent self illuminating orange looking octopus squid still undiscovered in the deep the prison gang fish due to the coloration, self illumination, and the fact that they can withstand a lot of pressure in a hostile environment. :)

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Posted in Fish on December 10, 2008.

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