Flowerhorn Fish (Single)
Flowerhorns are the ultimate “pet” fish due to their extremely interactive nature. They have been specifically bred to respond to the humans around them, and some will even lift their nuchal hump out of the water to be petted!
Flowerhorns are a hybrid fish that are based on one of the earliest man-made hybrid fish: the blood parrot. Since the first flowerhorns, often called luohans, flowerhorns have been hybridized with dozens of other cichlids. Their genetic history is unknown and varies greatly with each strain.
This complete guide will cover everything you need to know about keeping, caring for, and breeding Flowerhorn fish. You cannot complete your fish keeping career without one of these inquisitive fish!
Flowerhorn Fish Care
Even though different flowerhorns, even ones of the same strain, have diverse genetic backgrounds, this care guide can be applied to all of them.
Flowerhorns are considered an intermediate fish due to their aggressive nature, massive size, waste production, and diet requirements.
Tank Size: Flowerhorns should have a tank size of 125 gallons or 150-175 gallons if you plan on housing a male and female pair. It is popular to grow them out in smaller tanks and graduate them to larger ones as they grow, but unless you have plans for the smaller tanks, it could be considered a waste of money. Smaller tanks technically have enough gallons for them to swim around in and dilute their waste, but they are often not wide enough to allow a flowerhorn to turn around. Some of the smaller strains can be kept in a 75 or 90 gallon, but all fish appreciate more space.
Flow: Flowerhorns are strong fish and can tolerate moderate to high flow, but it is possible to have too much flow. If your flowerhorn is being blown all over the tank, the flow is too strong. Many flowerhorn keepers install additional powerheads along the bottom of the tank to push the waste towards the filter.
Substrate: Most large fish that are kept with a gravel substrate run the risk of swallowing it with their food. The gravel can then become impacted in the fish’s intestines, preventing it from passing any waste and creating a serious health risk. Large pieces of tile, bare bottom, or sand substrates are popular choices for Flowerhorn Cichlids.
Flowerhorns are far from picky when it comes to eating, but they require a protein rich and strongly varied diet. Live foods are not necessary, as they will eat frozen and dried foods with no problems.
Flowerhorns need a staple pellet to provide micronutrients and vitamins as well as additions like sun dried crickets, grasshoppers, mealworms, anchovies, and frozen shrimp.
Worms, such as white worms, blackworms, earthworms and nightcrawlers can also be fed to Flowerhorns.