Dimidiochromis Compressiceps - Malawi Eye-Biter
Dimidiochromis Compressicepts – Malawi Eye-Biter, Unsexed, Farm Raised, 2-3" Average Adult Fish Size: up to 8-10"
Place of Origin: Lake Malawi, widely dispersed in shallow water with vegetation
Feeding: High Quality Pellets, and meaty treat
Temperament: Mild, Conspecific Aggressive when spawning, will eat smaller tank mates
The Compressiceps is an ambush predator in nature, its laterally compressed shape and head-down hunting position allowing it to remain hidden among Vallisneria beds and making it tricky to spot in open water. It has a dark stripe running from the snout along the back to the tail which serves to provide further camouflage.
Despite its name, it does not prey solely on the eyes of other species - it prefers to hunt small fish (particularly juvenile Copadichromis sp.). It typically swallows these tail first and is the only known species of predatory fish consume prey this way. Its common name is derived from its habit of eating the eyes of fish in nature - this happens infrequently and there are various theories surrounding it. Some suggest that it is blinding its prey, others think that it only occurs when food is scarce, or yet others suggest the eye may be a delicacy of some kind. In any respect, this will rarely, if ever, happen in aquaria with well-fed specimens.
This large and impressive cichlid normally shows a whitish-silver body with a brown horizontal stripe along the sides, from the snout to the tail. Sexually mature males are a dazzling metallic blue with reds and oranges on their fins.