Cichlids chasing each other (9 interesting Tips)

We will talk about everything you need to know about Cichlids chasing each other. We will talk about the reasons cichlids chase each other and find out about the different behaviors, types, and requirements of different types of Cichlids.

Why are my Cichlids chasing each other?

Cichlids can chase each other because of the following reasons:

  • It can be due to the food competition
  • It can be due to the territorial behavior shown by Cocholds
  • It can be due to coupling behavior between Cichlids
  • It can be due to different incompatible types of Cichlids together
  • It can due to the overcrowding of the fish tank

Let’s talk about one by one to understand better about  Cichlids chasing each other.

Territorial behavior

Cichlids are aggressive in nature and when kept in water spaces that are not large enough for them to express their natural behavior, Cichlids chase each other to show signs of aggression and combat invitation. The chasing might mean maintaining and setting a territory, so other fish cannot invade it. 

Therefore it is very important to keep the Cichlids in proper spacious tanks with suitable tankmates for them. It is also against animal’s welfare rights to keep the fish in small closed spaces. It can cause suffocation to the fish and create a stressful environment.

The stress is not good for the fish as they are very sensitive and delicate creatures and cannot stand conditions like that. Therefore Cichlids chasing each other can happen because of the territorial behavior exhibited by the fish to mark the certain territory in the tank.

Food Competition

Cichlids chasing each other can be due to the food competition. If the feeding requirements of the fish are not met properly. It may cause the chasing because the hunger can lead the fish to express aggressive behavior towards each other. So, if you see Cichlids chasing each other add a little bit more food in the tank.

Cichlids can be carnivores and that is why they require a high protein and energy diet. Improper feeding may lead to unwanted consequences. Cichlids chasing each other can be due to their anger or frustration towards this stress of hunger. It is also against the animal welfare rights to feed your fish improperly. Feed the fish properly and maintain the clean and hygienic water measure for your fish to behave normally. 

Coupling behavior

Coupling behavior can be the reason why Cichlids chase each other this can be for the search of an appropriate partner. This behavior is called courtship behavior. It is often seen in fish to chase their partner or other fish to find out their partner. If the feeding and water conditions are ideal for the habitat and lifestyle of the fish. It can lead to breeding. 

Cichlids chasing each other due to the courtship behavior is a normal phenomenon and should not be disturbed. It is essential for the survival of the species of fish even in the fish tank or a pond. 

Overcrowding of the tank

Cichlids chasing each other can be due to overcrowding of the tank. Overcrowding and closed spaces can lead to aggression and territorial behavior of the fish. It is also against the welfare rights of the animals to be kept in small caged spaces. If you have overcrowded your tank with new fish, you probably have triggered the territorial behavior of the Cichlid.

Cichlids chasing each other can be due to the stress induced by the overcrowding of the tank. Keep in mind that Cichlids are aggressive fish and they can become defensive in protecting their space. Therefore if you see Cichlids chasing each other it is advisable to make the water less crowded.

Incompatible types of fish

Keep in mind that it is very important to keep the fish together in a tank that has almost the same kind of size, habitat, and nature. Different fish have different personalities in the same tank and can cause the Cichlids to chase each other’s behavior.

Therefore keep in mind that there are two types of Cichlids, the aggressive ones, and the non-aggressive or peaceful ones. That is why it is important to keep the compatible type of fish together to avoid chasing each other and show aggression.

The peaceful Cichlids

To prevent Cichlids from chasing each other, it is important to have an understanding of their behavior. Keeping aggressive and peaceful fish separate and in suitable conditions is one of the best ways to avoid aggression or stress conditions for the fish in the tank.

Following are some peaceful subspecies of Cichlid fish

Keyhole Cichlids 

These are one of the least aggressive and most cute subspecies of the cichlid fish. They back down from the fights when feeling threatened and instead of darting or chasing other fish, find a hiding place until the threat is over. They are very easy to keep their size ranges from a few inches to up to 6 inches. 

Blue Acara

These fish have the most beautiful and unique body colors and are very calm in nature. A sandy substrate is required for the Blue Acara as they have a habit of digging up the sand in the water tan. They are very peaceful fish and are the best choice to be used as the community fish. The Blue Acara is confident as well, it doesn’t back down from fights instead it stays confident and takes good care of itself.

Angelfish

These fish are beautiful and have a very calm personality. These angel-like creatures don’t just have the appearance of a beautiful angel, but also the calm and pacific personality as well. It is rare to see an angelfish aggressive or fighting with other fish. They are the best, to begin with, these fish do not chase each other in aggression. If you see an angelfish chasing another angelfish it might be the sign of their flirting with each other.

Rainbow Cichlids

These Cichlids are one of the most favorite pet fish breeds, to begin with. Most people begin with Rainbow Cichlids as they are beautiful, colorful, and very peace-loving fish. Rainbow Cichlids can almost eat everything, they can even eat algae of the aquatic environment. They are omnivores and can even eat human food. 

It is very easy to manage the Rainbow Cichlids as they are calm and do not require some special feeding. Keep in mind that even though the Rainbow Cichlids can eat anything they should be fed with proper dietary requirements and feed that fulfill the energy requirements of the Rainbow Cichlid.

Aggressive Cichlids

It is important to know about the nature of the Cichlid fish before putting them in the tank with other fish. To prevent Cichlids from chasing each other it is important to know their behavior and manage them accordingly.

Following are some aggressive Cichlid subspecies:

Oscar Fish

These fish are big and can be dangerously aggressive. If you are planning to put an oscar in small water spaces with other small fish. You should really not do this. Oscars can kill anything that comes their way. They don’t show mercy to any small fish when they are aggressive. They require large water spaces and equal size fish that have similar habitat and nature as the Oscar fish. It should be kept in mind that improper feeding and unbalanced water conditions can trigger aggressive behavior in these fish.

Jack Dempsey Cichlids

These fish are aggressive in nature and surely not a good choice as a community fish. But keep in mind that the aggressive behavior can be controlled and can help you keep these fish in your water collection. It is better to keen the Jack Dempsey Cichlid fish in the water tank that has the same natural fish. Proper feeding and water conditions can make the chasing of cichlids stop and help them be less aggressive.

How can you prevent aggression in Cichlids?

The following points can help you prevent aggression in the Cichlids

  • Put the right type of cichlids with each other. Keep the peaceful cichlids in the tank of peaceful fish. While keeping the aggressive ones in a different tank with suitable conditions.
  • Make compartments in the tank but not so confined and small to prevent aggression
  • Feed them properly and maintain the ideal water conditions such as the sanitary conditions and temperature of the tank
  • The fish should be kept safe from any kind of disease situations that can create stress in the fish. In some cases, the fear can lead to the defensive behavior of the fish.

Conclusion

We talked about everything you need to know about Cichlids chasing each other. We talked about the reasons cichlids chase each other and found out about different behaviors, types, and requirements of different types of Cichlids. 

We learned that there are peaceful and aggressive Cichlids and it is advisable to keep the fish having similar nature in the same water tank to avoid aggression. We also talked about some points to prevent aggression in the Cichlids.

Feel free to ask anything about Cichlids chasing each other in the comment section below

FAQs Cichlids chasing each other

Why do my children chase each other?

Cichlids can chase each other because of the following reasons:

  • It can be due to the food competition
  • It can be due to the territorial behavior shown by Cocholds
  • It can be due to coupling behavior between Cichlids
  • It can be due to different incompatible types of Cichlids together
  • It can due to the overcrowding of the fish tank

How do I stop my cichlids from fighting?

The following points can help you prevent fighting in the Cichlids

  • Put the right type of cichlids with each other. Keep the peaceful cichlids in the tank of peaceful fish. While keeping the aggressive ones in a different tank with suitable conditions.
  • Make compartments in the tank but not so confined and small to prevent the fight.
  • Feed them properly and maintain the ideal water conditions such as the sanitary conditions and temperature of the tank
  • The fish should be kept safe from any kind of disease situations that can create stress in the fish. 

Can cichlids kill each other?

Yes, cichlids can kill each other when they become aggressive. Many fish that are aggressive in nature kill each other. For example, oscar fish are big and can be dangerously aggressive. If you are planning to put an oscar in small water spaces with other small fish. You should really not do this. Oscars can kill anything that comes their way. 

What are the least aggressive cichlids?

Following Cichlids are some least aggressive cichlids:

  • Keyhole Cichlids
  • The Blue Acara
  • Angelfish
  • Rainbow Cichlids
  • Bolivian Rams

Are my cichlids fighting or mating?

It is important to look at the other conditions such as feeding and water conditions. If the environment is suitable the cichlids are probably matting not fighting.  

References

http://web.mit.edu/lxs/www/cichlids/behavior.html

https://www.ratemyfishtank.com/blog/african-cichlid-aggression-how-to-reduce-aggression

https://the-eye-center.com/category/f5e203-cichlids-mating-or-fighting

Hi, I am Martin, I am a pet lover! I own a Golden retriever and a Long-eared Owl. They keep me company & I often had questions about them which I couldn't find answers for online. I put this hub together for people like me & you.

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