#138: 284L Biotope Aquascape: Nkhata Bay, Lake Malawi Biotope
Ted Yeatts, Gainesville Florida USA
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Aquascape Details

Tank Size
122 x 46 x 53 cm (48 x 18 x 21 in)
Volume
284L (75 gallons)
Background
Deep blue aquarium background
Lighting
48 inch flourescent strip, single tube
Filtration
Sump with wet/dry trickle, approximately 12 gallons.
Additional Information
Many "Lake Malawi" biotopes are, in fact, not biotopes at all. They include fish from many areas of the Lake which would never meet in the wild. This, however, is a true Malawi biotope of one area of the Lake: Nkhata Bay. Two species from Nkhata Bay are found in the aquarium: Pseudotrophues sp. "acei" and, from slightly deeper but still overlapping depths, the beautiful white Labidochromis caeruleus "Nkhata Bay". It may seem strange to include driftwood in a Malawi biotope, however, it is crucial to this aquarium. In the wild, shoals of Pseudotrophues sp. "acei" can be found feeding on epixylic algae growing on sunken driftwood. In order to be true to the biotope, driftwood is included. A biotope including "acei" without driftwood would be incomplete. Ph=8.1, 8 dKh, 10 dGh. Ph is easilly maintained through regular partial water changes despite the driftwood. The substrate covers many rocks which are uncovered naturally by the cichlids as they manipulate their own environment.
Title
Nkhata Bay, Lake Malawi Biotope
Plants
No plants. Algae grows on rocks and driftwood.
Fish/Animals
Pseudotrophues sp. "Acei" (6), Labidochromis caeruleus "Nkhata Bay" (4 + uncounted fry)
Materials
Driftwood: from Africa; Substrate: sand with gravel of varying sizes mixed in covers base rocks of different shapes and sizes; Rocks: varying shapes and types representative of those in the Lake.