Iodotropheus sprengerae

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Rusty cichlid
Iodotropheus sprengerae.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Perciformes
Family: Cichlidae
Subfamily: Pseudocrenilabrinae
Genus: Iodotropheus
Species: I. sprengerae
Binomial name
Iodotropheus sprengerae
M. K. Oliver & Loiselle, 1972

Iodotropheus sprengerae, the rusty cichlid, lavender mbuna or lavender cichlid, is a species of cichlid endemic to the Boadzulu and Chinyankwazi Islands and Chinyamwezi Island regions of Lake Malawi. It prefers a temperature range of 24-26 °C.[2]

Rusty cichlids are elongate fish that can grow up to 10.8 centimetres (4.3 in) SL.[2] Juveniles and females are rusty brown color, while mature males have lavender purple hue.

Rusty cichlids are mouthbrooders. Females hold their fertilized eggs and fry, in their mouth for a few weeks before releasing the fry.

Aquarium Care[edit]

Although not entirely a peaceful fish, the rusty cichlid is considered one of the least aggressive among the mbuna cichlids. This quality makes rusty cichlids an ideal starter fish for aquarists with less experience keeping the mbuna. Hiding places and space should be provided or this fish will be bullied by their more aggressive tank mates. Rusty cichlids are omnivorous and will eat various kinds of food, but meaty food can often cause them serious digestive problems.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kasembe, J. 2006. Iodotropheus sprengerae. In: IUCN 2012. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. < Archived 2014-06-27 at the Wayback Machine.>. Downloaded on 20 April 2013.
  2. ^ a b Froese, Rainer and Pauly, Daniel, eds. (2013). "Iodotropheus sprengerae" in FishBase. February 2013 version.