What Size Aquarium Is Best For African Cichlids?

80 Gallon Adult African Cichlid Tank (48x24x16
80 Gallon Adult African Cichlid Tank (48x24x16") from www.bcaquaria.com

What Size Aquarium is Best for African Cichlids?

The Basics of African Cichlids

African Cichlids are a type of freshwater fish native to the rivers and lakes of Africa. They are very popular aquarium fish due to their vibrant colors, interesting behaviors, and ease of care. African Cichlids are also fairly hardy fish, making them well suited for beginner aquarists. However, they do require a large aquarium in order to thrive and stay healthy.

How Big Should an African Cichlid Tank Be?

The size of the tank you will need for your African Cichlids depends on the species and number of fish you plan to keep. Generally, a minimum tank size of 20-30 gallons is recommended for a single fish, but larger tanks are better if you plan to keep multiple fish. As a rule of thumb, you should plan on one gallon of water per inch of adult fish.

When selecting a tank, it is important to keep in mind that African Cichlids are highly active fish and require plenty of swimming space. A larger tank will also help to minimize water quality issues, as the greater water volume helps to dilute pollutants. Fortunately, African Cichlids are not especially messy fish, so you can usually get away with a smaller tank if necessary, but be aware that your fish may not thrive in cramped conditions.

Other Considerations for African Cichlid Tanks

In addition to size, there are a few other factors to consider when selecting an aquarium for African Cichlids. For one, these fish are highly territorial, so it is important to provide plenty of hiding places and decorations. This will help the fish to establish a hierarchy and reduce aggression. Live plants can also help to create a more natural environment, but be aware that some species of African Cichlids may eat or uproot them.

It is also important to select a tank that is made of durable materials. African Cichlids are known to be quite active and can easily scratch or chip a cheap tank. Additionally, these fish are quite strong and may try to push or break decorations, so you should use strong suction cups or weights to secure them in place.


Selecting the right aquarium for your African Cichlids is an important part of fish keeping. A larger tank is usually preferable, as it provides more swimming space and helps to dilute pollutants. Additionally, you should make sure to provide plenty of hiding places and decorations, and secure them with strong suction cups or weights. By following these guidelines, you can ensure that your African Cichlids have a safe and comfortable home.

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