Red Forest Jewels

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Jewel cichlid - Hemichromis bimaculatus

Scientific name: Hemichromis bimaculatus

Common name: Jewel cichlid

Family: Cichlidae

Usual size in fish tanks: 10 - 13 cm (3.94 - 5.12 inch)


Recommended pH range for the species: 6 - 7.8

Recommended water hardness (dGH): 4 - 18°N (71.43 - 321.43ppm)

0°C 32°F30°C 86°F

Recommended temperature: 22 - 28 °C (71.6 - 82.4°F)

The way how these fish reproduce: Spawning

Where the species comes from: Africa

Temperament to its own species: peaceful

Temperament toward other fish species: aggressive to smaller

Usual place in the tank: Middle levels

Food and feeding

Although Jewel cichlid will eat flakes or pellets, it should be provided with live or frozen foods like brine shrimp and blood worm.


Jewel cichlids are found on the African continent where they live in the rivers with muddy substrates.


Hemichromis bimaculatus can be difficult to sex but in spawning mode, the male will display more coloration.


Like most cichlids, the jewel will lay their eggs on a flat surface, raising the temperature slightly may induce the spawning. The eggs should hatch after 2-4 days and the parents will move them around the tank until they are free swimming. The fry should be fed on newly hatched brine shrimp or crushed flake.


Expected lifespan is 5 years.

Short description

Jewel cichlids can be very aggressive, especially when they are breeding, because of this it may be best to keep them in a species tank. A single pair should be kept in at least a 30 gallon tank.