African Cichlids Tank Decoration Ideas

Decorating your fish tank is always fun and exciting. In this article, I will give you lots of ideas on how to make your African cichlids tank unique is outstanding.

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But what are the best and most beautiful accessories to add to your tank? Continue reading to get some great ideas on how to decorate your African cichlid’s tank.


When it comes to the right substrate for your aquarium, there are many options to choose from: sand, pebbles, crushed coral or even coral sand.

However, it is important to know that sand is the recommended choice for African Cichlids by experienced aquarists. The main reason for this is that these fish are very fond of digging and excavating the sand for laying their eggs and finding food.

Aragonite sand is considered the best choice for maintaining water hardness and pH since aragonite is a crystalline form of calcium carbonate itself. Its leachable substances maintain the water in the right condition for our fish.


In their tanks, many rocks, caves and other hiding places are needed to provide shelter for these fish. Limestone and dolomite are the most suitable, like these, like aragonite sands, help to maintain good water chemistry.

However, this does not mean that you cannot get some artificial decorations or any other stones, as African Cichlids will not object to them either.

It is important that, as our fish like to move around in the sand and can deposit their eggs in a variety of places, the stones are placed as securely as possible in the aquarium to avoid the possibility of stacked pieces tipping over and possibly damaging the glass.

Rinse all the pieces and place them at the bottom of the empty tank. Only then add the sand, stabilizing the stones.


Since African Cichlids live mainly on a plant diet, filling their tanks with plants poses some problems. These fish feed not only on algae but also on higher plants.

However, this does not mean that no plants can decorate their environment.

So, let’s take a look at the species we can think of.

– Anubias

It is a favorite aquarium plant for beginners, as it is not delicate, is hardy and most aquarium fish don’t mind its tough foliage. It doesn’t require any special feeding, and the added carbon dioxide will at most speed up its growth rate.

It can cope with low light levels, is not demanding on water quality, can be kept in most common community pools, room aquariums and is very hardy. It will do perfectly well in most community aquariums and African biotopes.

– Java Fern

Experience has shown that it is a somewhat heat-demanding plant, preferring clean, soft to medium-hard, slightly acidic water at 75 to 82 °F, but it is highly adaptable, so it will thrive in slightly salty, colder or hard water. Good lighting is a prerequisite for proper development, but an average, moderately lit pool is perfectly suitable for its care.

– Water Onion

The water onion (Crinum thaianum) is one of the African Cichlids safe plants. Originally from Africa. It is a robust, bulbous plant with long, hard, wavy leaves. Because of its tropical nature, it is relatively light-hungry, so try to give it the best possible light.

– Cryptocoryne

Because it is so undemanding, it is a beginner’s favorite water plant, easily and often available. Its leaves and stems are sturdy and do not bother most fish, making it a perfect species for African Cichlids. It is very decorative either in a densely vegetated tank or in a community tank.

– Echinodorus

An extremely spectacular aquatic plant, perfect for display aquariums. Be sure to place it in a high aquarium, as low aquariums can have leaves that grow above the water surface, where the roof can cause them to corrode, and the lighting can burn them.

Overall, the plant is not considered too delicate, but its needs should be kept in mind. Intensive lighting (up to 11-12 hours a day) is very important for healthy growth, as is an adequate supply of nutrients.

– Vallisneria

One of the best-known and least demanding aquatic plants. In bright places, it develops many shoots on its vines, from which it is easy to propagate. This popular, oxygen-rich aquarium plant is suitable for both warm and unheated aquariums and grows well insufficient light.

It does not require any special feeding, and the amount of nutrients present in an average aquarium that the plant can use is usually sufficient to meet its needs.

Although the softer leaves may be consumed by herbivorous fish, the plant tries to compensate by growing quickly.


African Cichlids are so-called cave-dwelling fish. They designate cavities and caves between rocks as their territory, which they aggressively defend. In their species, this is true not only for the males but surprisingly also for the females.

Therefore, to maintain a safe aquarium environment, count at least one cave per fish. Anything with a relatively closed and flat bottom is considered a cave.

You can choose natural rock, slate, tufa and even ceramic caves, but be careful that the cave materials you choose are not too heavy, putting a lot of pressure on the bottom of the tank.


When setting up your aquarium, try to avoid the use of floating wood, as it releases tannic acid into the water, which can lead to a change in the pH level of the water, causing alkalization.

However, if you want to use them to decorate your tank, be sure to boil the wood and leave them to soak for a long time before they are given their final place among your fish.


We have many options and tools that can not only decorate our large aquarium but also provide a suitable habitat for our fish.

However, it is important to be cautious when purchasing them. Most of the accessories are inexpensive and can be bought in most shops.

We should try to ensure that our African Cichlids have all the necessary equipment in their homes to ensure a peaceful life.

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