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Aulonocara baenschi
Aulonocara "eureka"
Aulonocara hueseri
Aulonocara jocobfreibergi
Aulonocara sp."lwanda"
Aulonocara "ruby red"
Aulonocara "orange blotch"
Aulonocara rostratum
Aulonocara stuartgranti

Champsochromis caeruleus

Copadichromis azureus
Copadichromis sp. "azureus whitehead"
Copadichromis borleyi
Copadichromis sp. "mloto likoma"
Copadichromis sp. "virginalis gold"

Cynotilapia afra

Cyrtocara moorii

Dimidiochromis compressiceps
Dimidiochromis strigatus

Fossorochromis rostratus

Iodotropheus sprengerae

Labeotropheus fuelleborni
Labeotropheus trewavasae

Labidochromis caeruleus
Labidochromis sp. "caeruleus purple longnose"
Labidochromis sp. "perlmutt"

Melanochromis auratus
Melanochromis cyaneorhabdos
Melanochromis johannii

Metriaclima aurora
Metriaclima barlowi
Metriaclima callainos
Metriaclima estherae
Metriaclima fainzilberi
Metriaclima greshakei
Metriaclima hajomaylandi
Metriaclima lombardoi
Metriaclima mbenji
Metriaclima sp. "msobo"
Metriaclima zebra

Nimbochromis livingstonii
Nimbochromis polystigma
Nimbochromis venustus

Otopharynx sp."auromarginatus margrette"
Otopharynx lithobates

Placidochromis electra
Placidochromis sp."electra superior"
Placidochromis milomo
Placidochromis sp."phenochilus tanzania"

Protomelas sp."mbenji thick lips"
Protomelas ornatus
Protomelas sp."spilonotus tanzania"
Protomelas sp."steveni taiwan"
Protomelas taeniolatus

Pseudotropheus crabro
Pseudotropheus demasoni
Pseudotropheus sp. "demasoni mozambique"
Pseudotropheus sp."elongatus mpanga"
Pseudotropheus sp."elongatus ornatus"
Pseudotropheus sp."elongatus ruarwe"
Pseudotropheus sp. "flameback"
Pseudotropheus flavus
Pseudotropheus sp. "perspicax orange cap"
Pseudotropheus sp. "polit"
Pseudotropheus pulpican
Pseudotropheus saulosi
Pseudotropheus socolofi

Sciaenochromis fryeri

Tropheops sp."red cheek"

Tyrannochromis macrostoma

Lake Malawi map - northern part
Lake Malawi map - southern part




Protomelas ornatus
REGAN, 1922

Photo © Michael Persson
Protomelas ornatus male.

Trade names and synonyms
Haplochromis flavimanus, Haplocromis festivus, Haplochromis lobochilus, Haplochromis ornatus, Cyrtocara ornatus, Cyrtocara "Maleri thick lip", Eclectochromis ornatus.

Size and appearance
Could reach a length of approx 25 cm (10 in.). Females and non coloured males are greyish-beige with an evident dark brown lateral line and an irregular squared pattern at the upper part of the body. Coloured males are mostly blue with greenish-blue cheeks and yellow belly. The dorsal fin has a distinct yellow and white seem, the anal and pelvic fins are yellow. This species has a characteristic laterally compressed shape. Adult specimens of both sexes have exceptionally enlarged and fleshy lips.

In nature is Protomelas ornatus feeding on invertebrates and small fishes, preferably mbuna fry's. The enlarged fleshy lips are used to suck out the feed from crevices in rocks. In aquarium is shrimp mix an appropriate feed.

Should have a size of at least 400 litres (88 gal.), appointed with fine sand.

Occurs in the intermediate zone and the rocky habitat in shallow water at depths between 1 and 10 metres (3-33 ft.).

The male digs a spawning-pit in the sand in connection to a rock. Males that aren't sexually mature and females form schools.

Protomelas ornatus is a comparatively week in consideration to it's size and need company of other calm and peaceful cichlids to feel comfortable. Tank raised specimens don't get as thick and fleshy lips as adult wild caught specimens.

Lakewide distribution, execpt the area around the Mbenji Islands.

Photo © Michael Persson
A Protomelas ornatus male from Makanjila.

Copyright © Michael Persson 1997-2006. All rights reserved.