What Is a Good Tank Mate for a Female Red Devil?

Both Amphilophus labiatus and Amphilophus citrinellus are known as red devil cichlids. Both species are named for their fiery coloration in shades of red, orange and yellow and for their aggressive temperaments. Before putting red devils in with other fish, you'll need to make sure they are of similar temperament and size to prevent territorial aggression.

Same-Species Tank Mates

Male red devils may be highly aggressive to other members of his their own species, including females, so if you plan to keep both, you may wish to invest in a divided tank with a partition that allows the female to scoot to the other side but is too narrow to allow the male access. Multiple females can exist together in one tank, but once a male is introduced and a pair bonds, aggression may intensify with the other females.

Labiatus With Citrinellus

You could keep a female of either Amphilophus labiatus or Amphilophus citrinellus with fish of the other species. Females of each species can successfully coexist with each other, but aggression and possible death will increase once a male of either species is introduced. These two species can interbreed and produce hybrid fry. If you want to keep the purest bloodline, do not mix males and females of these two species in the same tank.

Other South American Cichlids

Other species of South American cichlids growing to 12 inches or more can work with your female red devil. Oscars (Astronotus ocellatus) come in albino and a variety of marbled colors; Jack Dempseys (Archocentrus octofasciatum) have shimmering spots speckling their bodies and fins. Black convicts (Archocentrus nigrofasciatus) have dramatic black and grey stripes punctuated with red spots. They grow to only about 6 inches, but their aggression prevents them from being bullied by female red devils.

Other Fish

You can put red devils together with African cichlids as long as they are about 12 inches in length. Choose moderately aggressive to aggressive breeds, as those with peaceful temperaments may be stressed, killed or spend their time hiding. Other fish who can usually coexist with red devils include plecos, eels and loaches. Your female red devil will become more hostile to other fish when she is guarding her eggs or fry.

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