Pet Health And Care >>  Fish Species >>  Jack dempsey  
Jack dempsey

Jack Dempsey Fish Species:

The Jack Dempsey fish is a member of the cichlid family of fish that hail from Central America.

This fish is so called because of the anecdotal resemblance of its strong facial features to the boxer of the same name. It is a popular aquarium fish because of its incredibly striking appearance and coloration. Like most other cichlids it also displays some promise of intelligence by being able to recognize its owners from a distance and will actually stare at its owners when they approach the tank.

Though it is considered to be especially affable to its owners, it doesn’t have such a likeable predisposition to other fish and the general rule that big fish eating smaller fish does hold true here. Though the fish is native to the Americas, it has also been found in regions of Asia and Australia. This is thought to be a result of fish escaping from aquariums.

One of the unique qualities of the fish includes its standard response to predators, which is to raise its spine. In at least one piece of urban folklore, it was stated that a man died when he tried to place a Dempsey in his mouth and the fish suddenly opened out its spine.

The fish is colored dark with a variety of colored spots all over it. It is unique in that it has the ability to change its color when in a position of stress or when there is some kind of environmental trigger. The fish and its larger group of cichlids are known to be extremely good parents with highly developed rearing skills. A leading pair will usually go to great lengths to care for their young; however, there can sometimes be some instances of cannibalism as well. This generally happens where there is some kind of environmental pressure upon the fish. When this happens it will waste no time in eating up its fry.

Caring for the fish involves feeding it live prey like worms and other fish. The fish would have to be fed carefully as the species is prone to getting obese from excessive eating and fat buildup. The ideal habitat of the fish is one in which the pH levels are carefully monitored in favor of a more acidic environment. The specific gravity and brackishness that is required should also be maintained. It is amiable to company but only company that it will not eat up.

  Submitted on February 5, 2010