The main reason that every hobbyist would want to own frontosa is for their majestic size and the humble character.

Why need a beginner’s guide for Frontosa fish? Frontosa fish is one of the most expensive fishes in the aquarium hobby and it is important to keep them healthy and alive. This beginner’s guide has precise information about Frontosa which would be required to keep them healthy and alive.

Frontosa – Overview

Common NameFronts or Frontosa
Scientific NameCyphotilapia frontosa
Habitat or OriginSpecies are native of the deep waters of Lake Tanganyika, Africa.
Average SizeThe male grows up to 35 cm or 13 inches and the female grows up to 25 cm or 8 Inches.
ColorationPredominantly Ink blue to dark blue, blue-black.
Life SpanFrontosa is one of the largest cichlids and in the wild, they live up to 20 years and in captive 15 years.
DietThey are carnivorous. In the wild, they come up to the surface in the morning and feed on small fishes, and in captivity, they are fed on pellet food, frozen brine shrimp.
Gender IdentificationMales have longer and wider bodies and their hump is bigger than the females.
BehaviorEven though they are carnivorous, they love peace. But keep in mind they are territorial.
CompatibilityFrontosa are mostly compatible with African cichlids like Calvus, yellow labs, peacocks, blue dolphin.
Ideal Tank ConditionsConsidering they are territorial and grow up to 13 inches, our recommendation is 75 gallons for an adult and it is advised to keep them in a group of a minimum of 6.
Water ParametersThe ideal pH to hold Frontosa is 7.8 to 9, with water hardness between KH 10-20. Water temperature should be between 72 to 78 Degree Farrenheit or 22 to 28 Degree Celcius
BreedingBreeding Frontosa is not easy, it is difficult to identify a male and female. They achieve their breeding stage at the age of 3 years and they are choosy when it comes to selecting mates. Group a dozen of Frontosa from young fish (2 months old) and grow them for about 2 years, this would naturally result in 1 male to 4 or 5 female ratios. As the harems are ready, the breeding process would begin. Females would lay eggs and males would incubate them and once the eggs fertilize the female would scoop the eggs in its mouth and hold it for 40 days. Post 40 days the eggs will hatch the fries will be around 1/2 inch and they would swim around their mother while the male will watch for predators. Young fries could be feed with brine shrimp or micro flakes.
Common DiseasesIch is the most common disease in Frontosa, this could be avoided by keeping the tank clean and water parameters intact.
Approximate CostThis depends on the quality of the strain, in USA the average price of a 4 inch young adult is 60 to 75 USD and in Asian countries, it is available at 1/2 of the price of USA.
What to look when buyingCarefully examine for any infections and wounds. Pick the ones which are healthy and active. 
Species in the MarketOther frontosa species available in the local fish stores – Burundi Six-stripe Frontosa, Zaire Blue Frontosa, Tanzanian Six-stripe Frontosa, Tanzanian Seven-stripe Frontosa or Frontosa “Kigoma” , Kipili Frontosa, Zambian blue Frontosa, or Blue Face Frontosa, Samazi Frontosa and Kavalla Frontosa.

Different types of Frontosa Fishes


I believe this 4 minutes time spent was helpful, additionally, if there any specific questions on these majestic Frontosa fishes, do submit your questions and provide us your feedback in the comments section and this would help enhance and refine