Otopharynx Tetraspilum Yellow Fin Mloto

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Otopharynx Tetraspilum Yellow Fin Mloto

Scientific name: Otopharynx Tetraspilum Yellow Fin Mloto

Common name: Yellow Fin Mloto

Family: Cichlidae

Usual size in fish tanks: 10 - 14cm 


Recommended pH range for the species: 7.5 - 8.5

Recommended water hardness (dGH): 16 - 24°N (285.71 - 428.57ppm)

0°C 32°F30°C 86°F

Recommended temperature: 24 - 26 °C (75.2 - 78.8°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

Use quality flakes or cichlid pellets for the staple diet. Treats of blood worms, brine shrimp, krill and Mysis will be readily accepted. In the lake they are feeding themselves with algae, invertebrates and small insects which they find between the vegetation.
In the aquarium they are comfortable with any food. They take everything they get offered, like spirulina pellets, mysis, artemia, cyclops and shrimp-peas mix.


Otopharynx sp."yellow fin mloto" is a cichlid which probably was found in the southern part of the lake 


The male will display a lot more colouration than the female; he will have blue?yellow throughout his body whereas the female will be a drab light grey colour. Always keep one male with several females but do not mix with other species  to prevent hybridisation.


My experience breeding Otopharynx species is that these fish only spawn every two to three months. They definitely are not on the same "lovin" schedule as most mbuna by comparison. For the most part, the males leave the females alone until they think the females are ready to breed.

One bonus for the cichlid hobbyist is that Otopharynx tetraspilus give you easy-to-see clues that they are getting ready to spawn

  1. Prior to breeding, females plump up considerably.
  2. Males noticeably darken. The sides of the fish go almost completely gray.

I was not able to observe this fish spawning, but reportedly the female excavates a small depression in the sand where she releases her eggs. She picks them up in her mouth. The male presents his egg dummies which the female bites at he release sperm.

Females are excellent holders. I let the female hold for 12-13 days and then stripped her of 35 fry with just a trace of yolk sac.

The fry are large and ready to eat Cylops-eeze and baby brine shrimp immediately. The fry grow fairly quickly, but do not exhibit much color until they are nearly adults.


The expected life span for Ruby red peacock is 5-10years.

Short description

Always add plenty of rock work to the tank to create hiding places. Open swimming areas must be left at the front, especially along the substrate and mid regions.


Otopharynx tetraspilus are easy to feed. In the wild, Otopharynx tetraspilus stomach content analysis has included algae, bits of vegetation and various small crustaceans. Provide a balanced cichlid flake. I fed a variety of foods including spirulina flake, cichlid flake, Spectrum, Aquarian Tropical Flakes and my home-made paste food..