Benga Sunshine Or Eureka Red? Question

  1. KittiePolar Initiate Member

    I'm really lost on how to ID this fish. I've had multiple suggestions now (here and other sources) and someone said to ask in the Cichlid section of the forum. You can find my original post here; Question - Help With Id'ing Cichlids?. Not sure what the rules are on making another thread but i'll have a look and see what the go is.

    So far I'm thinking she's a Benga Sunshine or a Eureka Red but I can't tell one way or the other. I don't necessarily believe she's a Eureka at this point because she doesn't have the swallows tail, and no red anal fin (just orange/red spots that may be turning yellow) however she does have the right colours/design on the dorsal. Others have suggested some sort of Hap because of the spots however that's a fairly loose description.

    The following descriptions are not necessarily in the photos as she doesn't like the camera and looses colour so I've included them here. She has 9 stripes on each side but will have 3 black spots depending on her mood. The tips of her dorsal fin are red/orange in colour and her anal fin/tail fin have reddish spots. She's about 6-7cm long (2.4-2.7inches) and seems to be growing incredibly slowly (very little growth in the two years I've had her - maybe 1cm or 2cm).

    1) Spots noticeable on tail and you can briefly see the stripes.
    Salt Tail.JPG

    2) Dorsal fin has red tips and black line/tinge, full body + tail.
    IMG_0644.JPG

    3) Spots on tail and red/organge tinge on tips of dorsal fin.
    IMG_0588.JPG

    Any help is greatly appreciated guys.

    (Please note that I have already confirmed that it's a female cichlid. She holds every month and we've seen her spit each time.)
     
  2. Demeter Well Known Member Member

    Very hap-like, not seeing all that much of the peacock appearance. The stripes should be pretty prevalent at all times on a female peacock.

    It's nearly impossible to get a correct ID with a fish that was not bought with a name that readily cross-breeds.

    I would possibly look into blue ahli and peacock hybrids. They often breed, I probably have one such cross-breed myself. The head looks very similar as does the sloping on the back.
     

  3. KittiePolar Initiate Member

    Unfortunately I rescued my cichlids (2) from my front door step (literally) so I can't find/give any indication of their history. I literally don't even know how old they are, but I'm confident they're small for their age. Obviously this makes it incredibly difficult to ID her however I do need to make a serious effort so that I'm housing and feeding her correctly.

    I looked into the blue ahli x peacock but i'm having trouble finding pictures. Are you able to show me any?

    I was doing some more research and found the red empress matched 99% of this cichlids body and colour (including the red/orange tips and spots). Some profiles indicated that the red empress can switch between spots, and stripes (vertical and horizontal) like this fish does.

    As far as cross breeding is concerned, what do you do with the hybrids? Do you just ignore them if they don't get eaten in early life and let them live in your tank? I keep seeing 'don't buy/breed hybrids' but I don't know what to do if I have them. Everything I read start to point towards clove oil but I refuse to do that to a healthy fish. I feel very confused by the hybrid issue and would seriously love an opinion on the issue.
     
  4. chromedome52 Fishlore VIP Member

    The general rule with hybrids is, "once you have them, keep them for their life." Of course, many, many people do not adhere to that rule, and we get mixed Cichlid tanks in the stores. Or they just don't realize they have hybrids, and pass them along as something they are not.

    My own rule with hybrids is, "Fish eat fish." If I don't have a fish that will eat it, I find someone who does. This probably seems as cruel as clove oil to some, but it's your tank space/food/time vs. a quick end with a predatory fish getting a good meal. If you have the tank space and are willing to dedicate it to a fish with no real purpose, that is your choice.
     

  5. Demeter Well Known Member Member

    You shouldn't of asked for pictures, now I will get more than you asked for :D

    I have several hybrids myself, in fact I have 3 generation of the first accidental crossbreed (yellow lab and peacock). I pick and choose the fry that look promising and I've been tossing the lesser ones into the main tank and if they live then that's fine with me. So far only one of those fry has survived.

    This is the first generation male, all the females are yellow with faint vertical baring.
    IMG_1457.JPG
    The next two are 2nd generation, the same male actually. Females of the second generation are yellow, brown/grey, or silvery white.
    IMG_1067.JPG pastel boy.JPG

    The third generation are a mere centimeter long. Basically I don't hate hybrids at all, I love them. The only problem is when a fish is sold as a pure strain, but is crossed with something. The owner wishes to breed the fish and ends up with some odd looking juveniles that don't end up looking as the species they were sold as.


    This is the ahliXpeacock I have. It looked very much like a pure blue ahli, but after a few months of growing...
    Probably male1.JPG

    Lost much of the blue, notice there faint orange on the tips of the dorsal. The faint egg spots on the anal fin are mainly what shows it is not a pure ahli. I have yet to find a pictures of an ahli with egg spots.
    IMG_1443.JPG
    IMG_1459.JPG

    Focus on the head shape rather than the details on the fins. You fish's head just doesn't scream "peacock" to me. The orange on the tips of the dorsal are common in pretty much all peacock and many hap species. The spots on the tail are present in many species as well. Many a cichlid has vertical baring when stressed/angry.

    This is one of my female peacocks, lots of vertical bars, spots on her dorsal, orange tips as well. Got her from petsmart a couple years ago. More than likely a crossbreed peacock. Note the holding female in the back, she's one of the 1st generation hybrids I was talking about. I don't plan on keeping any of her fry this time around.
    IMG_1462.JPG