T-bar Cichlid: The Ultimate Guide for Aquarists

T-bar Cichlid Featured Image

The T-bar Cichlid, also known as Amatitlania sajica or Sajica Cichlid, is a fish from Central America. It lives in freshwater streams and lakes on the Pacific side of Costa Rica.

T-bar Cichlid has a tan color and seven faint bars on its body. The third bar is more visible and forms a T-shape with a dark stripe coming from the gill cover, which gives it the name “T-bar Cichlid.”

This fish likes rivers with moderate to strong currents but avoids rapids. It prefers smaller rocks and gravel and is found up to 2000 feet above sea level.

The T-bar Cichlid eats algae, aquatic insects, seeds, and debris from the bottom of the water.

It breeds by laying about 200 eggs in caves or cracks, sticking them to slanted or vertical surfaces. Once hatched, baby T-bar Cichlids feed on mucus produced by their parents’ skin.

You can check out what this fish looks like over here.

T-bar Cichlid Interesting Facts

  • T-bar Cichlids live in freshwater streams and lakes in Costa Rica.
  • They eat algae, insects, seeds, and debris found at the bottom of the water.
  • These fish lay about 200 eggs in caves or cracks, with babies feeding on parental mucus.
  • Males can grow up to 3.5 in (9 cm), while females reach 3.1 in (8 cm) in length.

T-bar Cichlid Habitat

The T-bar Cichlid is a fish native to the Pacific side of Costa Rica in Central America. It lives in freshwater environments and swims close to the bottom (benthopelagic).

The ideal pH range for T-bar Cichlid is around 7.0, but it can tolerate different levels. The water hardness (dH) should be at least 15, but the upper limit is unknown.

The T-bar Cichlid prefers warm water temperatures between 73°F to 86°F (23°C and 30°C) and thrives in tropical conditions.

Water Temperature:73°F to 86°F (23°C to 30°C)
Water pH:7.0 pH
Water Hardness:15 dH

T-bar Cichlid Physical Characteristics

Size: 3.5 inches (9 centimeters) for Males, 3.1 inches (8.0 centimeters) for Females

Male T-bar Cichlids can grow up to 3.5 in (9 cm), while females reach 3.1 in (8 cm) in length. This fish has 17 to 18 spines on its dorsal (top) fin and 9 to 10 soft rays. Its anal fin has 6 to 8 spines and 7 to 8 soft rays.

T-bar Cichlid doesn’t have any unique features to easily distinguish it from others. However, it has some notable characteristics:

  • The third main lateral bar on its body is consistently wide.
  • Usually, there’s no blotch on the tail.
  • There’s no specific spot or pattern on the side of the body.
  • It doesn’t have an eye-like marking on the dorsal fin.
  • Mature females don’t show blackening on their stomach area.

T-bar Cichlid also has certain bone structures in its mouth.

T-bar Cichlid Reproduction

A female T-bar Cichlid can lay around 200 eggs at a time. She takes care of these eggs by tending to the clutch.

T-bar Cichlid Scientific Classification

Scientific Name:Amatitlania sajica
Also Known As:T-bar Cichlid, Sajica Cichlid
Conservation Status:Vulnerable

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