Lamprologus Ocellatus Gold

Lamprologus Ocellatus Gold 4cm

Ophthalmotilapia Ventralis

Ophthalmotilapia Ventralis 5cm

Lemon Cacatuoides 2cm

Lemon Cacatuoides 2cm

Lamprologus Ocellatus Gold 4cm

Lamprologus Ocellatus
Lamprologus Ocellatus Gold
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Lamprologus Ocellatus Gold


Lamprologus Ocellatus Gold’s are one of the smallest African cichlids available in the aquarium hobby and also one of the most stunning. These adorable little species spend a vast majority of its life living within and around shells which is why it also earns the name gold shell dweller. Ocellatus golds are one of the best beginner African cichlids because of their small size being around 5cm and great for nano aquariums. The ocellatus gold has a stunning gold color with a bright blue shimmer through its scales and two distinguishing shimmering patches under its eyes. It also has a comical look with its large beady eyes and 45-degree angle which it commonly swims at.  They are also great fish to breed in a colony because the parents take great care of the fry by making sure to keep them safe in shells or hiding areas. Telling males from females apart is difficult with these fish however it is best to get these cichlids in a colony and let them naturally pair off and breed. They will also maintain the colony according to space and food available meaning that massive overpopulation would not be an issue. Because they are usually kept in aquariums with lots of large shells the female will lay eggs within the shell and both parents will keep guard constantly going in and out of the shell to make sure the area is safe.  In the wild, the Ocellatus gold is found in lake Tanganyika of Africa. 


Tank Recommendations for your Lamprologus Ocellatus Gold

The gold occelatus is a very peaceful nano African cichlid and to really experience its behavior it is usually best kept alone in a colony with its species. They can be kept in nano aquariums with the minimum being a 37-liter aquarium (10 gallons) more length is always appreciated to increase surface area. A sand substrate would be best as they routinely sift through sand and large shells would be best in this aquarium. Escargot shells are most commonly used for this fish and are commonly found for sale online. The Ocellatus gold also routinely changes the aquascape so it is best to keep it simple with a sand bed and a large assortment of shells.


Suitable Tank Buddies

Ocellatus golds are a nano African cichlid and should be kept with species of a similar size or be kept entirely alone in a species-only tank with other golds. They would be okay in a community of nano Tanganyikan cichlids and mixing species from different lakes should be avoided.


Usually Compatible

The Ocellatus Gold can be kept with other nano African cichlids such as julidochromis, other shell dweller species, and calvus. However, mixing with other species does present the opportunity for fry to be eaten.


Sometimes Compatible

Medium size growing African cichlids such as xenotilapia, lemon cichlids, and Likoma cichlids. Essentially it is best to ensure any other African cichlid are kept with small mouths to ensure they do not prey on ocellatus. 


Rarely Compatible

Large African cichlids such as peacocks or haps would easily eat ocellatus golds. 


Feeding your Ocellatus Gold

The Ocellatus Gold is very easy to feed. It will readily eat a wide range of foods. Their diet should contain good quality nano African cichlid sinking pellets with high contents of spirulina or greens. 

More Information
Scientific Name Lamprologus Ocellatus
Care Level Easy
Common Names Lamprologus Golds, Gold shell dweller, Ocellatus Gold, Occies
Diet Herbivore
Fish Family Cichlidae
Lifespan (years) 10
Max. Length (cm) 5
Min. Tank Volume (l) 37 Litres
Origin Africa
Reef Safe Yes
Sociability Peaceful
Venomous No
Water Conditions 24-26° C (75.2-79° F), pH 8.0-8.5
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