Red Top Hongi Cichlid (Labidochromis sp. “Hongi”)

Red Top Hongi cichlid or Labidochromis sp. “Hongi” is an African cichlid that belongs in the Mbuna cichlid family. Red Top Hongi cichlids originated from Africa’s Lake Malawi. It is characterized by its vibrant purple blue coloring with black bars and orange yellow accent on the fins. Similar to other Mbuna cichlids, Red Top Hongi cichlids are rock dwellers. They are not as aggressive compared to other Mbuna cichlids but they are very territorial. Red Top Hongi cichlids are popular for aquarium hobbyists looking to start an African cichlid tank. Red Top Hongi cichlids are mouth brooders, under the right water condition, they can be bred at home.

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How Big are Red Top Hongi  Cichlids?

Red Top Hongi cichlids are medium sized cichlids. The male Red Top Hongi can grow to 5 inches in length or 13 cm while the female Red Top Hongi can grow to 3.5 inches in length or 9 cm.

Are Red Top Hongi Cichlids Aggressive?

Red Top Hongi cichlids are not as aggressive as the other Mbuna cichlid. It’s a popular choice for an African cichlid beginners tank. However, Red Top Hongi are known to be territorial especially when it is breeding.

What Water Parameters are Ideal for Red Top Hongi Cichlids?

Red Top Hongi cichlids will thrive in hard water tank that is set at 78-82 F at a PH level of 7.8 to 8.6.

Aquarium Set Up for Red Top Hongi Cichlid

Red Top Hongi Cichlids are rock dwellers, they prefer to swim and forage around rocks rather than swim in the open water. The ideal aquarium set up for your Red Top Hongi cichlids is to recreate the rocky environment that they are used to in Lake Malawi. Red Top Hongi cichlids will swim in groups. You should have at least 8 Red Top Hongi  cichlids in your tank. In order to recreate the Lake Malawi rocky environment, set up the aquarium with plenty of rocks and caves for hiding with a sandy bottom. You can buy caves and rocks from Amazon or go out and find some in your backyard. Be careful, don’t stack rocks precariously, they can fall on your cichlids!

Minimum Tank Size for Red Top Hongi Cichlids (Labidochromis sp. “Hongi”)

Red Top Hongi Cichlids can grow up to 5 inches long. You should house your Red Top Hongi  cichlids in a big aquarium at a minimum 60 gallons, ideally 150 gallons.

How Many Red Top Hongi Cichlids in a 75 gallon tank?

You can have around 19 Red Top Hongi  cichlids in a 75 gallon aquarium. Use our Mbuna cichlid tank calculator to calculate how many mbuna cichlids to house in your tank.

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How Often to Change the Water of Red Top Hongi Cichlid Aquarium?

Red Top Hongi cichlid aquarium water should be changed weekly. Change 25% of water weekly. It’s important to keep up with water changes to maintain good water quality.

What to Feed Red Top Hongi Cichlid (Labidochromis sp. “Hongi”)

Red Top Hongi cichlids (Labidochromis sp. “Hongi”) are omnivores. In the wild, they feed on aufwuchs. Aufwuchs are algae that grows on rocks. They also feed on insects, mites and creatures. Feed your Red Top Hongi cichlids pellets. Be careful, don’t overfeed your Red Top Hongi  cichlids, they may develop digestive issues.

How to Breed Red Top Hongi Cichlid

Red Top Hongi Mbuna cichlids are mouth brooders. The eggs are laid in caves and then scooped up by the female. She then incubates and carries them for 25 to 35 days. Even after the cichlid fry are free swimming, if there is danger or at night, the mother cichlid will keep her babies in her mouth for safety.  Mouth brooding Red Top Hongi Mbuna cichlids can be bred at home with ideal water conditions and aquarium set up. 

Below is an infograph showing step by step the breeding process of Red Top Hongi cichlids.

Red Top Hongi Breeding Infograph

What are the Other Names of Red Top Hongi Cichlids?

Red Top Hongi cichlid is also called kimpuma, Hongi Red Top or Hongi cichlid. 

Infographic of Labidochromis Cichlid

Below you will find an infographic of Labidochromis cichlids. At a glance you will find basic facts and how to care for your Labidochromis cichlid.

Labidochromis Infograph

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