This rainbow colored variant of the dwarf cichlid Apistogramma macmasteri is just stunning! Spanish for “little old lady”, the name is the only similarity between these fish and the humans they reference. Despite the name, these fish have big color and personality, with colors fading from red, pink, yellow, and blue, with changes depending on mood, this is one of the brightest of the naturally occurring color forms. The Apistogramma macmasteri 'Vieja' and 'Vieja II' were originally collected further upstream on the rio Meta than its original macmasteri cousins, and indeed there are many different wild color forms of this species, one of the most diverse types of apistogramma, even having different color variants within miles of each other. Our fish were then line bred in Europe, bringing out the best that the color form has to offer, including colors that you may not even see in the wild forms! Not only are the males colorful, with fading colors and very nice blushing, the females also tend to express some degree of the blushing as well, further distinguishing them from the original standard macmasteri.
When these fish were first collected, they would have been quite picky about water parameters in their home tank, but since our specimens have been tank bred for multiple generations, they are quite comfortable in water that is acidic to slightly alkaline, and water hardness from undetectable amounts all the way up to around 250ppm or so. One thing that they do appreciate are branchwork and caves in order for subdominant fish to hide. The branches and leaves commonly found in the water where these fish are collected also serve as little buffet stations for smaller fish and fry to not starve.
These peaceful fish will go with most any other peaceful community fish, and this variant especially, which is known for its body color rather than its finnage, will be great to add to tanks that may have more active inhabitants which may curiously explore a fin extension or two. All in all, these fish are a grand addition to most any community, and have a mosaic, almost psychedelic color palette that sets them apart from many other specimens you might find. These fish ship individually bagged.
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