The Apistogramma panduro, sometimes known as the Apistogramma pandurini, is a beautiful nano fish. The males of this species of dwarf cichlid are a metallic sky blue, with bright yellow tips on their ventral fins as well as a striking orange band around their tail fin, sometimes edged on the inside with a more delicate red. The females, as with most apistogramma, are a bright yellow, especially when in breeding mood, and set themselves apart from most other apistogrammas with the very dense black blotch, or sometimes bar, that are present on the flanks. These fish are very closely related to Apistogramma nijsseni, and are named after the Peruvian explorer Jesus Victoriano Panduro Pinedo, and was first found in the hobby in May of 1996, most likely by accident.
These rather small fish are collected from a section of the rio Ucayali, which is a portion of the main headwaters of the Amazon river, in Peru, as well as a bit further north from the rio Tahuayo. Where this dwarf cichlid is collected, there is very little flow, and there are plenty of fallen leaves and branches rotting in the water. With the botanicals present in the water, the pH tends to be quite acidic, and can easily be found below 5 and there is usually undetectable hardness. In the aquarium, however, you can easily keep them in slightly acidic to neutral water, and the water hardness can go up to about 200ppm with no issues. These little fish would love a planted aquarium.
These little blue darts are a great addition to any community tank, and are generally very peaceful, as long as there aren’t too many of their own kind in the tank. The males and females of this species have a tendency to form monogamous pairs that stay paired up for multiple spawns, so keeping a pair with a school of tetras or some rasboras is a great option. A single pair of these cichlids might just surprise you with a little group of babies sometime, as long as your aquarium is large enough to let them hide! Apistogrammas tend to be great parents, especially if you set up the tank with a lot of leaf litter and branchwork for the babies to hide in. These fish ship individually bagged.
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