The new term at Bangor University sees the first ever module devoted to cichlids in the UK.
The Cichlid Fish Behaviour and Evolution module was devised and is run by Professor George Turner and will consist of 20 lectures for those in the third year of their Biological Sciences degree.
The course will provide a general introduction to cichlids, breeding biology and mating systems- including mate choice and parental.
It will then move on to speciation, adaptive radiation and evolution and finally aquarium and food fish, conservation and the impact of the introduction of the Nile Perch into Lake Victoria.
George Turner is Head of the Biological Sciences School at Bangor and has worked with cichlids for many years. He is the author of ~Offshore Cichlids of Lake Malawi,
and is the Honorary President of the British Cichlid Association.
Professor Turner is keen to encourage students into some of the exciting aspects of fish biology and the department offers cutting edge techniques from everything from genome sequencing to look at the evolution of species in cichlids through to mate choice and breeding systems.
The department is also undertaking some fascinating research into how smell might be involved in mate choice and may in fact, together with sound, be just as important as sight in mate choice.
To compliment this work, the department has also just completed work on a two year tank project. This involves seven independent banks of tank systems, with separate filters, heaters and UV, partially re-circulating with automatic water change via overflow running at 10% water change/week.
There is a water volume of around 23,000 litres in a total of 229 tanks/compartments + 7 sump chambers.
The tanks range from nine litre isolation/fry tanks up to two massive eight metre long mate choice tanks. The tanks are currently being stocked and will house cichlids, guppies, Corydoras catfish and danios.