Shore Buddies Wisdom Wednesday
Photo by Jim Abernethy
The Jewel fish, also called the Jewel cichlid, have incredibly vibrant seemingly glowing light blue dots. They can grow up to 6 inches long, and have a low temperature tolerance. One of the key environmental factors thought to restrict many tropical non-native fishes to southern Florida is their intolerance of cold water temperatures. In the entire cichlid family, there is probably no other species that surpasses the aggressively and pugnaciously devoted parenthood of the African cichlids known as Jewel Fish. Probably the most remarkable fact about the Jewel Fish, however, is the relationship of the mated couple, which comes as close to a “married life” in the full sense of the word as can be found among fish. The parents do everything together from preparing the nesting site to caring for the eggs and protecting the young. They share faithfully in all these tasks and spend a large part of each day during the breeding season in activities designed to give their offspring the best possible start in life. Their “family sense” and the way in which the couple sticks together and shares the work is as remarkable as the fact that the mated pair later remains together far beyond the time needed to get the new generation started.