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Popular Diseases Affecting Flowerhorn Fish


With their vibrant colors and nuchal hump, Flowerhorns have been winning the heart of many fish lovers for years now. This ornamental fish is well-known for its beauty and along with that the ‘kok’ of the fish is also associated with Feng Shui. Moreover it is the nuchal hump or the bulged out head of the Flowerhorn that it has got its name from. This fish is not a natural breed of fish but a man-made one. Presently you can find them in the wild because they are released there.

It was during the 1990s when the Flowerhorns were first developed in Malaysia. Later during the coming year, this fish was also developed in Thailand and Taiwan. They are popular among the Asian as well as American fish keepers but they are not allowed in Australia. With a lifespan of 10 to 12 years, they stay in your aquarium filling it with colors. During the life span it is natural that you will get good care of the fish but still, there are high chances that the Flowerhorn may get affected by any disease.

REX Flowerhorn from fishforums forum

There can be numerous reasons that can lead to these diseases in these Flowerhorn. Even after taking good care your fish may get affected by the diseases. However, do not worry if you look out for the symptoms and take necessary steps you can easily treat the Flowerhorn. This articles is all about those diseases that may affect your Flowerhorn and how can you treat them.

Flowerhorn sickness prevention

Flowerhorns just like humans get sick and are affected by diseases. In order to cure these sicknesses, you need to take good care of the fish. By taking care of a fish people normally consider feeding them two to three times a day and maintaining the aquarium water. However, taking care is not limited to that, just like humans you need to make the fish feel that they too are special and do everything that will make them feel good enough.

REX Flowerhorn from fishforums forum

While you take care of the Flowerhorn apart from taking regular care you need to pay attention for any kind of symptoms that may lead to any disease. While you feed your Flowerhorn you need to observe them carefully. This way you can look out for any signs that shows that the Flowerhorn is not well. You should look for any odd body language as when they are sick their body language will be different from a healthy Flowerhorn fish. They may not move regularly or may seem to be agitated. Any change in behavior should be noticed so that you are able to take good care and treat for any illness that your Flowerhorn may be suffering from.

In order to give the Flowerhorn a healthy environment make sure that you take care of the following:

Required temperature

The best temperature that is healthy for a Flowerhorn is from 27 to 29-degree centigrade. In order to keep the temperature constant, you can keep checking after regular interval. It becomes difficult for the Flowerhorn to survive at any temperature beyond it. They will not die but they will feel uncomfortable.

The best temperature that is healthy for a Flowerhorn is from 27 to 29-degree centigrade. In order to keep the temperature constant, you can keep checking after regular interval. It becomes difficult for the Flowerhorn to survive at any temperature beyond it. They will not die but they will feel uncomfortable.

REX Flowerhorn from fishforums forum

The best temperature that is healthy for a Flowerhorn is from 27 to 29-degree centigrade. In order to keep the temperature constant, you can keep checking after regular interval. It becomes difficult for the Flowerhorn to survive at any temperature beyond it. They will not die but they will feel uncomfortable.

The best temperature that is healthy for a Flowerhorn is from 27 to 29-degree centigrade. In order to keep the temperature constant, you can keep checking after regular interval. It becomes difficult for the Flowerhorn to survive at any temperature beyond it. They will not die but they will feel uncomfortable.

Water condition

The water should be good enough for maintaining the Flowerhorn properly. The pH level of the water should be well maintained. The best pH level that helps the Flowerhorns to survive in the best way is from 6.0 to 7.6. Apart from maintaining the acidity level of the water, it is also important that the ammonia level and the nitrate level is also checked. Both should be o as when there is ammonia or nitrate in water the Flowerhorn is going to suffer a lot. Thus, the best way to maintain the water is keeping the pH level within level and check out the nitrate or the ammonia level for a few times whenever possible.


There should be enough oxygen in the tank so that the Flowerhorn is able to swim and feel good. Thus, the filtration process of the water tank should be good enough. There should be enough bubbles in the tank and the water should be regulated also.

REX Flowerhorn from fishforums forum

Water Change

When it comes to regulating the water you must know about changing the water as it is also important to give your Flowerhorn a good environment to live in. another reason to change the water is giving the Flowerhorn a clean place to live. As the Flowerhorn eats enough they excrete a lot too. Now, these get accumulated in the tank water. If you do not clean that properly then they can be another reason for their illness. On weekly basis keep changing about 25% – 30 % of the water. This way the Flowerhorn will be disease-free and healthy too.


Another important part of taking good care of the Flowerhorn is feeding it the right food at the right time. Flowerhorn loves to eat and thus feed them timely, at least 2 to 3 times a day. They love to eat shrimps, bloodworms and other live food apart from pellets. After feeding you also need to pick up the leftover food. Even after taking care regularly there may be times when your Flowerhorn gets ill. Be careful and keep a keen eye to find out if they are showing any symptoms. Mentioned below are some of the popular disease that affects the Flowerhorns:

1 – White Spot Disease

When a Flowerhorn is affected by this disease you can notice white spots all over the fish body. There will be a change in their behavior too as they will act a bit lethargic than usual. Their fins will be clumped together and they will not eat normally. Most of the time you will find them at the corner of the tank. There can be many causes behind this disease and the most prominent one is, of course, bad water quality. Even the drop in water temperature below 25°C can also lead to such an issue. The main cause is a ciliated protozoan namely Ichthyophithirius multifilis (ICH). Even if they are fed with frozen or even live food that has parasites this disease may develop.

Flowerhorn – White Spot Disease

You cannot treat the Flowerhorn by treating the water only as the parasite that is responsible for these diseases lives under the skin of the fish. This is a very contagious disease and for treating you need to treat the water of the aquarium totally. If you can stop the breeding cycle of the ICH then this disease can be treated. So stop the breeding cycle of the ICH and you will be able to stop further spread of the disease. In order to cure white spots, you have to place an inhibitor inside the tank. Along with the medication, you must also add aquarium salt at 3g/lt of water. This should be done every 3 days. After the third day, the tank should be washed totally to remove any kind of causative agent. Then you must clean the tank properly with a good agent.

In order to prevent from the spread of this disease, you must quarantine any new fish also should avoid any cross tank contamination.

2 – Hole-In-The-Head Disease

This disease is very dangerous as it may even cause the death of the Flowerhorn. It is called HITH or is also known as Hexamita. If treated during the early stage it is possible to treat the Flowerhorn totally from this disease. The main cause of this disease is the Hexamita Protozoa and when the water quality is very poor there are high chances that this disease may occur. In order to detect this disease at an early stage keep looking for any small pits of pimples that may grow on the fish’s head. With time the pits will keep growing. The pits are normally white in color and sometimes you may also find some mucous around the pits. It will become lethargic and will lose weight. It will also seem to be losing its appetites. There will be white and stringy feces too.
It is possible to treat the Flowerhorn with the help of metronidazole (7mg/ltr) or dimetridazole (5mg/ltr).

Flowerhorn – Hole-In-The-Head Disease

You have to repeat this treatment once after every 3 days. Also, the water change is necessary. In order to prevent any kind of further spread, you must change the water regularly.

3- Mouth, Body and Tail Fungus

When the Flowerhorn is affected by this disease you can find small white fungus growing on the body and mouth of the fish. This disease can be cured but you need to keep a keen watch on the fish while it has this disease. The main cause behind this disease is Saproglenia and other bacteria related to it. This type of bacteria thrives in bad quality water. Also if there is any sudden change in the water quality then this bacteria may grow. In order to detect this disease, you should look out for symptoms like soft cotton tufts on the body, mouth, and fins of the Flowerhorn. The fish will also start losing weight.

In order to treat Flowerhorn, you have to put some Aquarium salts in the tank. This can also be treated with the help of fungus eliminators. You should also clean the whole tank. In order to prevent such disease the water quality should be maintained properly. Also cross tank contamination should be avoided.

4- Dropsy

When a Flowerhorn is affected by Dropsy its digestive system is affected. If care is not taken at an early stage then there may be a certain serious problem with the health of the Flowerhorn.

The main reason for dropsy is a bacterial infection. There are chances that the Flowerhorn is affected by this disease if the water quality is very poor. Sometimes the tank is overcrowded with decorative items. These may also lead to such diseases among Flowerhorn. Even a stressed Flowerhorn can also be suffering from Dropsy.

Flowerhorn suspected to have the Dropsy disease

When the Flowerhorn is suffering from Dropsy you will notice that the fish is bloating. It will stop eating and look stressed. It will not move and try to hide. In order to treat the Flowerhorn stop giving any Aquarium salt in the tank. It is best visit the local pet shop and get mediation for treating the flower horn. In order to prevent such occurrence it is best to change the water regularly. Normally a Flowerhorn is kept alone and thus there is no question of removing the ill Flowerhorn from the aquarium but keep the aquarium clean.

5 – Fin & Tail Rot Disease

When a Flowerhorn suffers from fin and tail disease it will be noticed that the fin and the tail lose its glow. It will not able to move or even dive within the water. They will look dull. However, this is not a serious disease and can be cured easily.
The main bacteria responsible for this disease is Pseudomonas. Apart from that when the water is not clean the Flowerhorn may be affected by this disease. You will be able to notice this disease when you see that the fin and the tail are white edged and is eaten away. They may even start dissolving. The color of the fish will also become dull and it will appear sick. The fins will be clumped together too.

Flowerhorn – Fin & Tail Rot Disease

The whole tank should be treated and Tetracycline must be added. Also change water regularly in order to avoid this disease among the Flowerhorn.

6 – Air Bladder Disease

When a Flowerhorn is suffering from air bladder disease then the air blade does not open normally and it is not able to swim properly. This is a serious problem and if attention is not given quickly it may turn devastating for the fish. Flower will not die because of this disease but it dies because it cannot swim properly. As it swims in the wrong position it feels stressed and then dies.

Different viral and bacterial infection leads to this disease among Flowerhorns. Fungus attack on the fin may also affect. Moreover, unclear water is also responsible for this disease. You will be able to understand that the fish is suffering from this disease if you notice that the Flowerhorn is facing difficulty while swimming. They will be swimming upside down. It is a bit difficult to treat thus the best thing is to show the Flowerhorn to a vet doctor. In order to avoid this disease it is best to change the water at regular intervals.

7 – Velvet Disease

When the fish is suffering from velvet disease then it will look unusual and will stop eating. It is easy to treat this disease and cure the fish. The main cause behind this disease is a fungal infection. Even poor water quality is also responsible for this disease. In order to treat you should make a copper sulfate solution. Then add I g of copper sulfate solution with citric acid along with purified water. Keep adding a little bit of this solution to the tank water for 10 days. The best way to avoid this disease is keeping the water clean.

8 – White Poop

White poop is another disease that also affects the health of the Flowerhorn. You will notice that the fish is pooping something white in color that forms a line and also looks like a sticky white long tail. The main reason for this illness is internal parasites that are there in the digestive system of the Flowerhorn. Eve live feeding with parasites in it may also be responsible for this disease. Poor water quality also leads to such a problem. Apart from that when the fish is fed with high protein food worms may be there in the stomach.

White Poop Syndrom

In order to treat the Flowerhorn of this disease the best way is taking medications from vet shop. They will suggest such medicine that will kill the worms in the stomach. The fish should also be kept without feeding for about three days. On the third day remove 305 of the water and repeat the medication again.

To end the note

Every Flowerhorn owner wishes that they have fish that is healthy but still different reasons leads to illness among the Flowerhorn. The first thing to ensure to keep the fish healthy is maintaining the quality of the water. When the water is clean most of the disease will not affect the Flowerhorn. Thus, the water should be changed regularly and it should be cleaned too. Unclear water will lead to most of the problem.
There can be a problem from live food too, thus while feeding live food makes sure that they are taken from a good source. Still, there may be parasites that may affect the health of the Flowerhorn. Also, remember that when the Flowerhorn has any disease and it is detected then most of the time it is cured easily. Thus, you have to keep noticing that what your Flowerhorn is doing. Is it active or it seems dull. Whenever you find that it may be lethargic then check properly if there are any other symptoms.

Frequently asked questions

If the Flowerhorn is hiding is it ill?

The Flowerhorn is very moody fish. They are aggressive too. They do not play much but yes they can try to hide sometimes. When it is hiding it does not shows that it is ill. There can be numerous reasons that it is hiding, but yes, illness can be one of them. You should check out for different symptoms that might affect the Flowerhorn. If there are no such symptoms then it means that the Flowerhorn is just taking rest. While if you notice that there are certain symptoms then you should take care as fast as possible.

Also, notice that when the Flowerhorn is hiding is it eating or not. If it is eating then probably there is no problem, but if it is not eating then you can be sure that the Flowerhorn is suffering from a certain illness.

What is the best food for Flowerhorn?

There are different food items that are loved by a Flowerhorn. Actually, they love eating. Different kinds of food are available for treating different kinds of features. Like if you want to enhance the color of the Flowerhorn then you must give them certain food while if you want to increase the nuchal hump then the food should be a bit different. Flowerhorns love to eat live food like shrimps, bloodworms, and others. Apart from that, there are many packaged food available that is great for Flowerhorns.

How to feed Flowerhorns?

Flowerhorns loves to eat and whatever you toss them in their tank they will love eating. The beauty of Flowerhorns lies in their vibrant colors and their nuchal hump and to keep this growth steady it is necessary to feed them at least two to three times a day. Still, it is necessary to skip the meal of the Flowerhorn at least once a week. If a ‘fast day’ is observed then the digestive tract of the fish gets rests and also gets cleared. Whatever food you feed your Flowerhorn remember that it should be able to eat that within 30 seconds or less. If you feed the fish with more food then they will miss some of the food that will be there left at the tank. They will rot there and foul the water. It is now known that unclear water is totally bad for the health of the Flowerhorn.

Are Flowerhorn freshwater fish?

Flowerhorns are freshwater fish which means that you do not need to add any aquarium salt to the water tank where the Flowerhorn is kept. They can live better in fresh water with its pH level ranging between 6.1 To 7. Now, there can be certain circumstances where adding salt to the aquarium becomes necessity. By adding salt many disease can be cured and thus in order to cure the Flowerhorn you have to add some salt, otherwise they love to live in fresh water.

8 Tips To Enhance Your Flowerhorn Color


Just have a look at nay Flowerhorn and you will understand what makes them so special in the eyes of fish lovers. Their vivid colors, bulging head and the way they swimming the aquarium makes them all special. They have won many hearts since they were first bred. Their brilliant and vibrant color and won the heat of many and once you have a look at them they are going to astonish you with their beauty. Their nuchal hump or the ‘kok’ is thought to be bringing in good luck charm to those who own them.

Apart from the growth and prosperity, it’s also their beauty that makes them so special to the hobbyist. The beauty of the Flowerhorn does not depend upon the size of the nuchal hump only but also on other factors. The main thing is of course its color and the pearling. This is why most Flowerhorn owner wants to know about different ways by which they can enhance the color of this beautiful fish.

Taking care of a Flowerhorn

The basis of having brilliant vibrant color is that the Flowerhorn should have good growth and a healthy body. Thus, before you know the tips for enhancing the color of the Flowerhorn you should learn about different things that is necessary to take care of the Flowerhorn.

The first thing to note in regards to taking care of the Flowerhorn is the tank where you will grow them. The size of tank will depend upon the size of the Flowerhorn. When the Flowerhorn is small about 2 inches in size a tank with 20 gallons will be enough for its growth. However, as the Flowerhorn grows in size you have to increase the size of the tank. If you can have a tank of 75 gallons it is considered as the best size. It will give enough space to the Flowerhorn to grow and they can live comfortably in it.


A Flowerhorn is aggressive and territorial fish and thus try not to keep other fishes with the Flowerhorn they may not like it. It is best to keep them aloof.
The water condition of the tank is also important when it comes to Flowerhorns. The best temperature is between 27-29°C. You also need to ensure that the pH level of the water is also maintained in between 6.5-7.0. This will give the fish a happy and healthy environment. Ensure that the tank water is oxygenated so that it can breathe properly within the water.

Keep the bottom of the tank clean so that algae and other bacteria do not grow over there. It will hamper the health of the fish. Also decorate the base of the tank because if you do that the fish will find it more natural. However, a Flowerhorn do not need too much decoration so keep things simple.
Finally, the food you feed them is most important. It is for their natural growth, color enhancement and of course growth of the nuchal hump. Thus, be careful while you feed them. They also love eating live food thus keep that in their diet too.

Once you have leant about taking care of the Flowerhorn you have to be very careful about other things that will enhance their color as the vibrant color of the fish has mesmerized many people in the past and will continue to do so if you can take good care.

Enhancing the color of the Flowerhorn

The Flowerhorn is naturally very colorful. This is because of their origin. When they were bred they had been done so from different colorful species of tropical fishes. The natural color of a Flowerhorn can be red, yellow, orange, silver, blue or even green. The most popular color of a Flowerhorn is Red but if you want to look for something else you can surely find it. There are ways by which you can enhance the colors and make them look more vibrant. The Flowerhorns have a different design on their body and while the color of the Flowerhorn is enhanced it should be noticed that the other designs are also enhanced so that the beauty of the Flowerhorn increases.

Golden base Flowerhorn

Here are a few tips that will help you while you work on enhancing the colors of the Flowerhorns:

Learn about the natural colors first

Before you know about enhancing the color of the Flowerhorn it is important to learn about its natural color. The most common color of a Flowerhorn as mentioned earlier is red. It is more popular for those people who have faith in Feng shui. Other well-known colors are orange, blue, yellow and silver. Now, you must be thinking that which color should be enhanced most.

Red Dragon Flowerhorn

Being the owner of the fish your aim should be to enhance the natural color of the fish first. You should not try to do something that will develop other colors more than the natural color. Like if the natural color of the fish is blue and you are trying hard to make it develop red color the result can be something that you didn’t expected. The fish may lose its attractiveness. Not only that it will lose its beauty it can have some allergies and in the worst case the fish may even die. Thus, always make sure that you are trying hard to enhance the natural color of the fish and not trying to develop any color that is not in it.

Intensity and Spread of coloration

While you are working on enhancing the color of the fish you should consider both the intensity of the color along with the spread of the color throughout the body of the fish. It should be intense enough so that the color is crisp and vivid. Along with that check out if the coverage is throughout the body. It must be as wide as possible as that will make the fish look better. There may be lines within the body of the fish that separates the color of the fish. While enhancing the color of the fish care should be taken that the color of the lines are not left apart. The lines colors should also be enhanced.

Maintaining the balance of the color

There are different Flowerhorns with different color variation. They have colors with different intensity and width. While the color of the Flowerhorn is enhanced it must be taken care that all the colors are enhanced equally. If the intensity of any one of the color is low then care should be taken so that it is enhanced and made equal to the other colors of the Flowerhorn. This will give an overall bright look to the Flowerhorn. No part of the Flowerhorn will look dull in this way.

Blue Flowerhorn

You should also be careful about sudden darkening of the color of the Flowerhorn. The main cause of discoloration of the Flowerhorn is certain type of allergies that might affect the body of the Flowerhorn. The basic reason for such allergy is using too much color enhancer. Like, if you are feeding your blue dragon Flowerhorns with red color enhancing pellets with the thought that the fish will become red color then you may find that the result is something different. The fish may start turning dark although you continue feeding it with red pellets.
It’s not only that feeding wrong color enhancer will turn the fish dark, but there can be some other causes too. Like, poor water condition, disease, stress or even some kind of injury. You may also notice that the golden base Flowerhorns normally turns dark in a particular period. This is because they start shedding off their scales and their true colors reveal. Later they gain regain the color.

Apart from all these, there are certain fishes that have a naturally dark color and nothing much can be done to change or enhance the color of such fish. Thus, if you wish to have bright colored fish then choose light colored ones as sometimes nothing can be done with the dark-colored Flowerhorns in terms of enhancing the color.

Using pellets with color enhancement pigment

In order to enhance the color of the Flowerhorn, there are pellets available that have color enhancing pigment in them. When you feed the fish with those fish food the color of the fish enhances. Among these fish food, the most common one is astaxanthin. This is mainly used for enhancing orange and red coloration of the Flowerhorn. Different fish food for enhancing the color are mentioned below. Before you learn about them always remember that such fish food should be used that has a balanced amount of fish pigmentation.

You can use these fish foods for enhancing the pigmentation of your Flowerhorn if you have plans of participating the Flowerhorns in any competition.


This is mainly used for enhancing the red and orange colored Flowerhorns. Among all the different fish food for Flowerhorns that are used for enhancing the color of the Flower, this is the most popular one. It is derived from different kinds of natural sources like shrimps and krills. The synthesized form of astaxanthin is canthaxanthin and thus if you find any fish food containing the latter you can understand what it is.
It should be remembered that while you are feeding astaxanthin to the Flowerhorn make sure that they are not any blue based Flowerhorns. This will cause some allergic reaction in the Flowerhorn that may turn devastating. There are different fish food available in the market that contains astaxanthin and some of them are Alife, XO Ever Red, XO Super Red Syn, and Cyclop Flowerhorn Food. You can buy any one of these but before that, it is better if you conduct your own research on which of these will be good for the Flowerhorn.


When you want to enhance the color of a blue-based Flowerhorn head to get some Spirulina. They are available in nature in the blue-green algae. Naturally, it is found that the blue based Flowerhorns are mainly dull in coloration and thus to increase their color you need to feed them with Spirulina rich pellets. If you do that consistently then you can get some good results. However, if you wish to see the results within a few days you may be disheartened. You may have to wait for three months or more before you start noticing any change after feeding the Flowerhorn with Spirulina based food.

Not only for the blue based Flowerhorns can you use this food for those Flowerhorns who have wormlike pearls or pearly dots on their body. Such Flowerhorns mainly belongs to the ones from the new strain.

Color enhancement pellets


When you want to enhance the yellow color of your Flowerhorn then you must feed them with Xanthophyll. There are very few choices when it comes to this food fish. Still it is very good for enhancing the yellow color of the Flowerhorns. If you do not get any do not worry and try to look for fish food that are mainly for the gold fish.
For enhancing the yellow color of the Flowerhorn you can also look for some other ingredients like dried egg, marigold powder, or corn gluten meal.

Live food is also necessary

Even live food is also good for increasing the coloration of the food. All you need to know is learn about which food should be fed for enhancing which color best. If you want to enhance the redness of the fish then try out some frozen bloodworms and shrimps. When you are trying to enhance the yellow color then you should include some dried egg yolks in the diet of the Flowerhorn. However, you have to be very careful while you use this food as sometimes these may lead to some disease in the Flowerhorn. Thus, make sure that if you find any such signs then you stop feeding them any food for the sole purpose of enhancing the color.

Lighting has its role too

It is a part of the whole arrangement where you keep your Flowerhorns, but remember that lighting too plays a major role when it comes to enhancing the colors of your beloved Flowerhorn. When any fish is kept in dull area where there is almost no light then they will have colors that are dull. They will not have vibrant and vivid colors. On the contrary, when your Flowerhorn gets ample amount of direct sunlight throughout the day you can find it is developing natural brilliant colors naturally.

Flowerhorn in Tank with nice lighting

Thus, always remember to keep the Flowerhorn tank in such a place where there is direct sunlight. It should be placed in a well-lighted room and where there is some source of direct sunlight. Artificial lighting that is used for decorating the tank should be avoided for prolonged period. It is best if the tank is illuminated for about 12 hours a day. This will enhance the colors naturally.

The age can make some changes

Even the age of the Flowerhorn has its role to play when it comes to their color. When they are about two to three inches in size they start to develop their colors. The spread of color is different for males and females. For males, the colors continue to develop and intensify till they grow to the size of about six to eight inches. The colors keep on spreading till these days. After this, it is found that the colors start fading this is mainly because of the aging of the Flowerhorn.

Flowerhorn in Tank with nice lighting

When the golden base Flowerhorn is about 3 to 5 inches in size the Flowerhorn keeps changing its color. This is because it is shedding of its old color and regain new color after some time. The new color will intensify after a period.

Breeding makes a difference too

When you are breeding Flowerhorns you should stop feeding them with any color enhancing food. This may have any off effect on their growth.
Apart from this, it should be noted that the color of the Flowerhorn will also depend on the breeding process. Some of the Flowerhorn strains have vibrant colors while others do not have. Thus, just do not try out everything without noticing the type of Flowerhorn you have.

Flowerhorn that loosed it’s color

To end the note

Finally, to sum of the whole thing it can be said that the color of a Flowerhorn can be enhanced if you take care of it properly. When you maintain the exact temperature that is required and the salinity in the water then you will expect your Flowerhorn to be healthy. Anything that is healthy will give you healthier results. Thus, whether you feed the Flowerhorn with color enhancing pellets or try out something else if the fish is not in a healthy environment then you cannot expect it to grow and mesmerize you with its eternal beauty.

There are different colors of Flowerhorn and it should be noticed that when the color is enhance nothing is forced on the Flowerhorn. If the Flowerhorn is forced with a certain color then the results will be bad and much is discussed about that already.

Frequently asked questions

How to decorate an aquarium for a Flowerhorn?

When you are enhancing the color of the Flowerhorn it is natural that you will like to keep it somewhere that has a beauty of its own and will increase the beauty of the Flowerhorn in all. Thus, the aquarium or the tank where you keep it is most important. The best way to decorate as well as give the fish a good environment to live is decorating the floor of the tank with pebbles and rocks, glittery stones and colored stones. They must look vibrant like your Flowerhorn.

Do not put any real plants on the floor as the fish may start eating them. The Flowerhorns do not require many things around but whatever décor you provide them to make it simple. They love to live in an area that is clean and tidy.

What are the ideal temperature, pH, and water volume to keep Flowerhorn fishes?

Much has already been discussed about the ideal temperature that must be maintained in the Aquarium. In order to maintain a temperature ranging from 27 and 29 °C, you should keep it checking. If there are any changes in the temperature then make sure that you have cleaned the water and have made arrangements for maintaining the temperature. The water should also be kept clean as if there is dust and other particles then they may be the cause of any disease. Also, remember to keep changing the water as if you do not change it the result may be similar.

Can any disease affect the color of the Flowerhorn?

When there is any life there can be disease and the Flowerhorn can also have them. When they Flowerhorn has any allergies or any other disease there are high chances that the color of the Flowerhorn will be affected. In order to check that you need to maintain the beat environment where there will be the least chances of getting affected by any disease. In case you find any problem do check it and give the necessary medicine to the Flowerhorn.

Can the cross breeding increase the attractiveness of the Flowerhorn?

After the first Flowerhorn was developed there were many more researches done and now there are different types of Flowerhorns with different kinds of patterns and colors. This is mainly because of the cross breeding. They are done in such a way that the attractiveness quotient is increased with every effort. It’s true that all of them may not be successful but most of them good results and you get a great Flowerhorn to keep it at your home aquarium. A Flowerhorn lives for about 12 years and during this period you will get enough from them and can enjoy their beauty always.

Top Attractive Types of Flowerhorn Cichlids

Types of Flowerhorn Cichlids

When you think of ornamental fishes no doubt Flowerhorn will be one of the first choice. In the mid 1990’s the Flowerhorn cichlid was made in Malaysia. It was a hybrid fish and gradually it became popular. It got it name ‘flower’ from the dark spots that runs along its body along the lateral lines. Along with that the term ‘horn’ is added to show the nuchal hump that the adults of the fish has on their head. Flowerhorns are also known as “warships.”

The first Flowerhorns were developed with the cross breeding of the south and Central American cichlids and the trimaculatus. Hence, many of the specimens of the Flowerhorn have similarity to a trimac. Gradually as more and more types of cichilids were developed they were called Flowerhorns whether they had the dark spots on their body or not! Presently one will find different types of Flowerhorns and each of them have their own specialty.

Keeping a Flowerhorn at home

Undoubtedly the Flowerhorns are the most attractive fishes to be kept at home and thus they are costly many people tend to have the hobby of having Flowerhorns at their home. You need to be very careful when you are planning to have a Flowerhorn in your home, but before that it is necessary that you know about few things for giving the Flowerhorn the best environment.

  • The hump is the beauty of the Flowerhorn and thus make sure that you get one with a big nuchal hump.
  • You need to feed your Flowerhorn at least thrice daily. If you leave the Flowerhorn for few days and go somewhere else you will find that the hump had reduced when you return! Yes, it is accumulation of fat and when a Flowerhorn does not get its food from outside it uses the one in the hump.
  • Make sure that the tank where the Flowerhorn fish is kept is big enough. It should be at least 50 gallons.
  • The pH balance of the Flowerhorn is also very important.
Flowerhorn Big Hump

You can learn about all this later but first you need to know about the different types of Flowerhorns that are produced with time. Since they are genetically created there are different breeds now and each of them have their own specific characteristics. Although different breeds have different strains but the characteristics of different strains of Flowerhorns in the similar breed is almost same. One common characteristics of the Flowerhorn is of course its nuchal hump that makes it different from any other fish in the aquarium.

The list below enlist some of the most attractive types of Flowerhorn Cichlids that are available nowadays and are most popular. Before that lets learn about the origin of the Flowerhorns.


Breeders started breeding Flowerhorns during 1993 as the Malaysians always admired fishes with the nuchal hump. They used to call these fish warships. The forehead of the fish was slightly protruding and they had a long tail. It was believed in Taiwanese society that these fish brings in good luck charm. Later, in 1994, trimac cichlids and red devil cichlids were imported from Central America. Then in Malaysia, these were hybrid with the blood parrot cichlid that was imported from Taiwan. After they were bred together the birth of Flowerhorn occurred.

Trimac Cichlids

Breeders wanted to do more with the fish and thus in 1995 they further crossbred the blood parrots with the Human Face Red God of fortune. It produced a new breed that was known as the ‘Five colors God of Fortune.’ It has very attractive colors and become popular very fast. Selective breeding continued and different attempts were made. Some were noteworthy others were not. Later in 1998 the seven colors Blue Fiery Mouth were imported from Central America. Again there was another crossbred in between the fish from Taiwan namely, Jin Gang Blood parrot. The first generation of the Flowerhorn hybrids was born and they were officially known as the ‘luohans.’ Gradually different Flowerhorns were developed and the list below mentions a few of them that are most popular and attractive.

Blood Parrots


The Kamfa Flowerhorn is a bred that has originated from the luohans. They contained the main characteristics that of the Hua Lo Han. The fish has a fantail and the eyes were either yellow or white. The head bump of the fish is watercolored. The lips of the fish are smaller compared to another type namely Zhen Zhu. It has sunken eyes. The nuchal hump on a Kamfa is quite big compared to the Zhen Zhu and it has a large and square body type.

Kamfa Flowerhorn

Zhen zhu

Zhen Zhu is also derived from Luohans but they came slightly after the Kamfa. The ZhenZhu is also known as the pearl scale Flowerhorn and they have a larger mouth compared to the Kamfa with a rounder tail. The eyes are red and protruding and they have a prominent head bump. The breed is popular because of the pearling or the flower line. Many breeders’ tries to cross breed these cichlids because of this characteristic so that they can get better and attractive breeds of Flowerhorn. However, the risk of carrying of weak tails remains.

Zhen zhu Flowerhorn

Golden base

The Golden base variety of Flowerhorns mainly comprises of the faders and the Golden Trimac. They are termed as fader due to the characteristics they show. During their juvenile period their color starts fading and at one time they become black. However, gradually the black also fades away and then they get a vibrant color that is either yellow or red. Due to this vibrant color they are identified with the Golden Trimac.

The Red Texas Cichlids are produced by breeding the Mammon with the green Texas cichlids and they are related to the Golden base family. In order to achieve the red color, they are crossbred with the parents mainly the King Kong Parrot. According to any Flowerhorn hobbyist, the color of the red Texas cichlids is most important feature.

Red Texas Flowerhorn

Thus, depending upon the grade of the color red of any Red Texas Cichlids their value decreases or increases. The lowest grades are the ones who are unfaded. The ones with yellow color are considered to be the second grade Texas. Then comes Orange and most of the Texas are of this category. However there are ones who have a coral pinkish color and although they are less sought after than the red one, but are in demand. The most desirous of all these was, of course, the Red Texas.

Apart from the color they also have pearling that distinguishes then from other breeds. It also makes them look attractive.

Golden Base Flowerhorn

King Kamfa

King Kamfa also belongs to the Kamfa family but is a bit different. They have yellow or white sunken eyes and there is a rare possibility that the King kamfa have red eyes. Along the lateral line, they have double flower row of black color. This is one of the most distinctive features of this fish. This fish too originated from Thailand but it is also found in Vietnam. Its body is similar to any other kamfa with a difference in the fantail. It is considered to be one of the most sought after species of Flowerhorn and is very costly. King kamfa can be of total black color or total white but the pearling makes them look brighter and different from the Kamfa.

King Kamfa Flowerhorn

Kamfa malau

After the male Kamfa was crossbred with the Malau female the Kamfa malau Flowerhorn was found. The face and the body of the Flowerhorn resembles a typical Kamfa and the fins and the sunken eyes resemble that too. Again the Kamfamalau has pearling that is one of the main features. The fins have frosted pearl look and this look is not easily found in any other type of Flowerhorn. Unlike any other Flowerhorn, the pearling of the Kamfamalau crosses till the head bump and crosses it easily.

Kamfa Malau Flowerhorn

Thai Silk

Also known as Titanium the Thai silk is a comparatively new breed of Flowerhorn. It has a metallic blue, white or gold color. The origin of this fish is not clear. Another new strain of the Thai Silk is developed that has the Kamfa body type and it has blue, red or white eyes. It is believed to be the crossbred between the Texas Cichlid, white tigers and the Vieja.

Thai Silk Flowerhorn

Golden Monkey

Actual golden Monkey are very rare to found and very few of them are available readily. Golden Monkey is also known as Golden Fortune as was bred by Lam Seah and Lam Soon in Bercham. After that when the third generation evolved all of them were sold to the best Aquariums during the year 2001.

This Flowerhorn is an original Luohan and not a missed type like the Kamfa or the Zhen Zhu. This is one of the most priced Flowerhorn.

Golden Monkey Flowerhorn

King Kong Parrots and Red Ingots

The King Kong Parrots were the early stage of hybrid Flowerhorns that were developed by breeding. They were then developed into Blood Parrot that are considered to be the first hybrid cichlids. The key features of the blood parrot are its big head and a comparatively smaller body. It has protruding eyes along with a V- shaped mouth. A red devil cichlid has similarity with the shape of the King Kong and after reaching the size of 18 cm its mouth shape transforms into a triangle. Then it has protruding jaws that are distinct.

As the King Kong parrot grows larger it develops a reddish orange color along with a dorsal fin that is shorter compared to the anal fin. The weight of this strain of Flowerhorn is mostly below half a kilogram after maturing. By using pigment injections the color of the King Kong parrots and the Blood parrot are changed to blue or purple. However, for the fish, this is not a healthy practice. Moreover, the color of the fish fades away with time. When the Parrot cichlids are fed with natural colorants they will develop a natural red color that is quite vibrant.

King Kong Parrot Flowerhorn

The Red Ingots are another type of Flowerhorn that has a round body shape and their anal fin and dorsal fin is larger compared to the tail fin. Its mouth opens and closes naturally. The nuchal hump of the red ingots is quite large and it weighs something around 1 kilogram when matured. They have clear eyes. Whether its Red Mammon or Red Ingots, both the strain of Flowerhorn is hybrid cichlids. They are considered great for Feng shui. The Red mammon has a bog head and nuchal hump and thus it is considered that it wears a hat by the God of Fortune. It is considered that bigger is the nuchal hump of the fish in your aquarium better will be your luck.

At their early stage, both the Red mammon and the Red Ingot grows faster. They grow about 20 cm during their early years and then later after two years they grow to about 26-28 cm in size and that is quite fast. The final size of the fish grows to something around 30 cm or more. The aquarium where the fish is kept should have a water temperature of at least 28°C along with the pH is 6.5-7.5 which means it requires slightly acidic water.

Red Ingots Flowerhorn

Few other types of Flowerhorn

Apart from the ones mentioned here three are many other types of Flowerhorn. Not that all of them are very popular but few with their majestic looks and features have been attracting the Flowerhorn lovers for years. Here are few of them

– Super Red Dragon

The name of the fish is due to its sharp bright red color. It is actually a natural breed native to Thailand but it is also known to be found elsewhere in different countries including Indonesia. The Super Red dragon has a nuchal hump that is protruding and give it an exemplary look which is actually great.

Super Red Dragon

– Rainbow King Fish

As the name suggests this Flowerhorn has won much international Louhan competition and is the king among them all. It has its origin in Singapore and in popularity, it is rasing every day. It is now more popular than the most popular breed of Flowerhorn the Kamfa. It has derived its name rainbow due to the color of its body that has different colors that of a rainbow. It looks majestic.

Rainbow King Flowerhorn

– Super Red Synspilum

Thailand is considered to be one of the best louhan manufacturers, thanks to the Super Red Synspilum. Earlier it is also termed as the Kamfa of Thailand however gradually it has developed its own identity. It looks exotic while it swims due to color it has. The red color of this Flowerhorn is mixed with orange and that makes it look great.

– Strom

Although this Flowerhorn strain is becoming popular but nothing is known much about its ins and outs. This fish is a crossbreeding product of the fish lovers of Thailand. It has a pearly presence in its head that is very much similar to the Texas cichlids. The horizontal marking makes it look elegant and while it swims with its own beauty.

To conclude the note

Thus, mentioned above are the different types of Flowerhorn from the wide variety of Flowerhorns available. It is up to you that which type of Flowerhorn you will like to have in your home. Having a Flowerhorn is not enough. If you choose any Flowerhorn based on its looks then you may not be able to take care of it for long. Thus, it is very much important that you learn about the environment that is required by the particular Flowerhorn for its development.

Being very aggressive and territorial fish you cannot have too many Flowerhorn together. Actually it is always suggested that you keep a single fish in a tank. This will let them grow happily. The bigger will be the size of the tank of the Flowerhorn better will be its growth. Most people assemble the nuchal hump or the kok of the Flowerhorn with Feng shui. It is believed that if the nuchal hump grows then the lock of the owner of the Flowerhorn also grows. For that it is necessary to maintain an optimum temperature of water in the aquarium that must be something between 27- 29°C. Apart from that it is also necessary that the pH level of water is also checked and it must be kept within 6.5 to 7.0 as most of the Flowerhorn prefers to grow in a slightly acidic water.

Along with maintaining the aquarium it is also necessary that the Flowerhorn are fed well. They prefer live foods like drain guppy, bloodworm, and shrimps. Many prefer to feed those pellets but it should contain high protein. The Flowerhorn loves to eat and thus they must be fed at least thrice daily.

Frequently asked questions

How to identify a Flowerhorn with good features

There are different kinds of Flowerhorns and you must be aware of that by now. Before going to buy a Flowerhorn you must have your budget. These Fish are not a cheaper options. They are quite costly and the vibrant beauty that they bring to your aquarium justifies the price. Once you know your budget you can start choosing among the types of Flowerhorn that can be bought by you.

After that comes the question of how can you features of the Flowerhorn. If you are buying fries of the Flowerhorn it is actually very difficult to understand the features apart from believing the words of the seller. Still you can ask if it is any cross breed. In case of cross breed make sure that it is not cross breed of same parents as then the result is not good. Apart from that different types of Flowerhorn has different features and you can choose one among them.

Are there any sexual difference in Flowerhorn and does it affects its looks

Of course, there are two different types of Flowerhorns the male and the female but much is not known about their sexual experience. Regarding the look of the Flowerhorn the male has a better nuchal hump or ‘kok’ compared to the females and thus they look more vibrant. If you want to know whether the Flowerhorn you are buying is male or female it is best to take the advice of the seller.

Still if you want you can try to check it out yourself as it is said that the vent of Flowerhorn is different for the males and females. While the male has V-shaped vent the female has U shaped vent and anus. There are few techniques that are applied by experts to understand whether it is a male or female and you can try them if you really want to confirm before buying one.

Is it tough to take care of Flowerhorn

Whatever is the type of Flowerhorn you have it is necessary that you take care of it. Actually, they are very hardy fish themselves and needs very little care. They can tolerate different kinds of environment that may not be tolerated by different other kinds of fish. They are mainly carnivores and thus loves eating different types of meats. For a beginner you should be prepared to provide it with a large space to live. The aquarium should be of at least 55 gallons if not more. The more is the space the better these fishes feels. They are very aggressive fish and thus you must not keep more than one fish in one aquarium. Do not have too many cichlids in the same aquarium as the Flowerhorn are very territorial and they will not let any other fish live near them. If you can maintain the temperature right and the acidity level of the water then it will not be very tough to grow them. Just keep feeding them thrice.

8 Tips to Grow Massive Flowerhorn Kok

Tips to Grow Massive Flowerhorn Kok

Once you see the Flowerhorns you identify this fish with its vibrant colors and the little nuchal hump that it has. This nuchal hump is also known as Kok and the main aim of any Flowerhorn lover is that they want to see their Flowerhorns with large Kok. Some breeders’ aims to increase the colors of the fish and make it look more brilliant while wanting the Kok of the fish to grow and show its supremacy. Actually, the Kok of the Flowerhorn is like a crown that they wear and it shows there supremacy.

Before going in deep into the growth of the development of Kok of a Flowerhorn, let’s check out the history of the fish. They are engineered fish and were first developed in Malaysia. They were developed by the breeders in Malaysia by cross-breeding different South American Cichlids. Gradually with their vibrant colors and the nuchal hump, they started attracting attention from the fish lovers. Gradually there was a development of different types of Flowerhorns and today you can find different type available both at the stores and online stores.

The Flowerhorns are believed to be a lucky charm in Fengshui. It is believed that the size of the Kok tells about the luck of the person owning the Flowerhorn. As the Kok keeps on growing the luck also starts favoring the person who owns the Flowerhorn. Thus, many people want to ensure that their Flowerhorn has a massive Kok that will bring is a fortune to them. Apart from the fortune hunters Flowerhorn, big Kok is also important for those who love the vibrant color of the fish and wants to ensure that they have the best one in their aquarium.

It may be a challenging job to make your Flowerhorn grow its Kok but with these tips, it will become a little simple. However, before you start work on the Kok of your Flowerhorn cichlids its time to know something about the Kok.

Flowerhorn with big nuchal hump

Flowerhorn Kok makes them the king

The crowning glory of Flowerhorn makes them look different and attracts fish lovers towards them. This nuchal hump is the storage area of fat of the fish. It is sometimes considered as the lucky charm too. The bigger the hump is better is luck. That means the more fat is stored in the nuchal hump the breeder considered it better. Not only that the hump of the Flowerhorn is associated with luck but it is found that the bigger the hump is the more aggressive the fish becomes. That is why it is said that the hump gives them a King like attitude in the aquarium.
The Kok of the Flowerhorn is differentiated based on its size, type and shape.

Basic types of Kok

Hard Kok

They are more significant in the old school Flowerhorns. Hard Koks are mainly the small protrusion found on the forehead of the male Flowerhorns. It has got it name as when you touch the Kok you will find it harder and flat. This is because of the minimal amount of fat that is deposited in the nuchal hump of the Flowerhorn. They become attractive when they have wonderful pearl and color patterns.

Hard kok Flowerhorn

Semi water Kok or soft Kok

Semi water Kok Flowerhorn are the combination of hard and water Kok. It is sometimes known as soft Kok too. The semi water Kok also do not grow enormous but they grow to a size that is harmonious to the size of the fish and they do get an appealing appearance. When you press the Kok lightly you will feel the softness but beneath that softness, you will feel that it is hard. It can be felt with a little harder press. It looks vibrant if you shine a light just behind the Kok area. At that time the translucent part of the Kok becomes prominent.

Water Kok

It is the most sought-after Kok. Not only that Flowerhorns with this type of Kok looks great but they can grow to enormous size. When you touch it you will feel the softness and if light passes through it the appearance is translucent. The Kok may be of different shapes. Some can be bubble shape while some other can be pointed shape. There are ones with ball shape Kok and some other have Kok that seems like a helmet on their head. Whatever shape the Kok has, it gives the Flowerhorn an attractive look that has made them so popular.
It is natural that most people will prefer to have Flowerhorns in their aquarium who have water Kok. Now, the question is when you buy the cichlid how you can understand that it will be having a water Kok. The best way is to ask the breeder who will have an idea about the gene that the Flowerhorn bears. Genes play a vital role and along with that, it is the male Flowerhorns who are found to have a nuchal hump or the Kok.

Water Kok Flowerhorn

Being a Flowerhorn lover by now you must be thinking about how you can grow the Kok bigger. Here are a few tips that will help you to grow the Kok of the Flowerhorn :

Tips to Grow Massive Flowerhorn Kok

1. Check what you feed the Flowerhorn

In order to be happy and stay healthy, the Flowerhorns needs good quality food. If they are fed with the right food at the right time and in right quantity then there are high chances that the Kok of the Flowerhorn will grow big. Naturally, Flowerhorns loves eating and they keep on eating food, they are big-eaters thus, you have to keep feeding them with high-quality food. Now, when they are eating much they will produce a lot of waste too. Be careful about that.

While choosing the food you should see that it is well balanced with vitamins, minerals and proteins as without that the Kok will not grow. You can include brine shrimps in their diet. These shrimps are like the ones human eat, but just a little smaller. It has a rich texture and strong flavor which is loved by the Flowerhorns. Moreover, the brine shrimps are packed with vital nutrients and proteins that are necessary for the growth of the head of the Flowerhorn. It is best to feed them live brine shrimp as the nutritious value is more for them.
Apart from brine shrimp, there are some other food items like vegetables and bloodworms that is loved by the Flowerhorns and is good for the growth of the Kok too.  You can also feed your fishes with the fish flakes. They are prepared in such a way that they provide a well-balanced diet that you are looking for your Flowerhorn. You can feed each of this food separately or mix them and it can be a great platter for the Flowerhorn. Eating good quality food will always keep the fish healthy and will help in the growth of the Kok.

Flowerhorn increasing hump food

2. The frequency of feeding is also important

When you expect your Flowerhorn to have a great Kok then just feeding them with the right food is not enough, if you do not feed them after regular intervals. You should feed them at least 3 times a day and the quantity should also be checked. When the fish are fed more they will produce more waste, thus keeping checking if the water is clean. The platter in which you feed the fish is also important as if it is of not right size then apart from increasing the Kok size it will increase the waste produce too. In order to maintain the metabolism of the fish, it is best to feed them after a regular interval and it should be at least three times a day.

Massive KOK flowerhorn

3. Size of the tank

Flowerhorns grows best when they have enough space to grow. The minimum size of the tank should be of 55 gallons. It is far better if you can have a tank that is of 75 gallons. Actually, the bigger is the size of the tank the more area the Flowerhorn gets to grow. When it grows bigger there are high chances that the fish Kok will also grow. When a Flowerhorn is packed in a small tank it affects its growth. You cannot expect the right growth from it and then the results will not be as expected. During the development stage, it is best to keep each cichlid with a particular tank. It will give them enough space to grow and their Kok too will grow.

The Flowerhorns are not very fond of greenery and thus you need not to have too many plants at the base of the tank. Just ensure that they have someplace where they can hide if they wish too. Little gravel at the base of the tank will give them a playing option. So do not forget to lay them on.

Flowerhorn inside a big tank

4. Maintain the filtration of the water and keep it clean

In order to let the Flowerhorn have great Kok it is necessary that the water is well-maintained. The well-being of the fish is affected by the water quality and the size of the Kok too. When the fish do not have any health problem it has a natural growth of its Kok, thus the water should be filtered properly. It is best of the filter that the aquarium has is able to process 10 times the water that the aquarium can hold in one hour. The filter should be able to conduct three-stage filtration so that the water inside the tank is pure and healthy.
There should be at least 30% partial water change in three days apart from regular filtration. You should also be able to clean the waste that lies there inside the tank. In case your filtration is not strong enough then you must change the water partially every two days.

5. Lighting plays a major role too

Most of the time people forget the effect of light on their life. This is true for the Flowerhorns too. The aquarium must get some sunlight. It has the natural elements that will help the Kok grow bigger. Try to locate the aquarium in such a place where direct sunlight can reach at least during a particular time of the day. This will give the fishes a natural feel and their Kok too will mature better. Apart from that, you can make an arrangement of lighting that will keep light inside the tank for at least 10 hours a day. That makes the Flowerhorn get a comfortable environment inside the aquarium.
You also need to maintain the temperature inside the tank. It should be something near 86 Fahrenheit or 30 degrees Celsius. In order to maintain the temperature, you can change some water if required.


6. Increase their aggressiveness

It is believed that Flowerhorns with bigger Kok is more aggressive than other ones who do not have a large Kok. Thus, the opposite can also be tried in order to increase the size of the Kok of the fish. When the fishes are in wild it is often found that the fish who are dominant have larger Koks. That means that those who are more aggressive have larger Kok. So, you need to increase the aggressiveness of the Flowerhorn. How?

You can bring a mirror and place it in front of the aquarium. Once the Flowerhorn notices the mirror it will feel like fighting against the other Flowerhorn. The more aggressive they become the better it is for the growth of the Kok. They will feel that they are fighting with a male and enjoy that too. The moment you remove the mirror the Flowerhorn will think that the other male was frightened and have run away. Thus he feels his dominance in the region!

7. Play with it for stimulating its Kok’s growth

In order to stimulate the growth of the Kok you also need to play with Flowerhorn. Apart from playing with the mirror mentioned above, you should also try to get it to indulge in different other games that will make it feel a strong Flowerhorn. While you give it food just do not throw the food in the tank. Play with it by trying to give it once and again taking the food away. They Flowerhorn must feel that it has snatched the food from your hand and they will feel much better with this.
Apart from that let the Flowerhorn play in the gravels that are laid at the base of the aquarium. You can move gravel and make it move another one. All this will help in the growth of the Kok pf the Flowerhorn.

Huge Kok

8. Take care of the genes too

Although you do not have much to do in this regard, but it is often found that the Kok size depends mainly on the genes of the Flowerhorn. Comparatively, it is found that the male Flowerhorns have bigger Kok compared to the females but then again it depends a lot on the genes. What you can do is while buying the fries ensure that you are buying male ones so that they have great Koks.

In order to differentiate in between a male and female, you can check out their vents and anus. The male has rectangular vents while the females have U shaped vents. The anus of the males is not wider than the vents as in case of the females. You must remember that if the Flowerhorn does not have great Koks in its genes then anything you do will go to waste. Thus, while you buy the juveniles you should be very careful. Any professional can do this easily with their experience. If you are a beginner then you have to try your luck a few times before you learn the tactics. While buying the fish make sure that it has a little hump that can be a promise for having a bigger Kok when you take care of the fish properly. Whatever, it is after you get a good gene Flowerhorn following the above-mentioned tips will help you grow the Kok of the Flowerhorn.

Flowerhorn with big KOK

To conclude

The growth of Kok of a Flowerhorn no doubt depends upon the genes but apart from that if you follow the tips mentioned above you will find that the Flower horn’s Kok is growing better. It is tough to compare it with any other Flowerhorn but then you should take care that everything that it gets in its environment is helpful in keeping it healthy and helps in the growth of the Kok too. Every Flowerhorn has its unique beauty and apart from the Kok its color is also attractive. Just make sure that you do not concentrate on the Kok and in doing that the color of the Flowerhorn is not developed. Like, you must not feed the Flowerhorn with more than one cricket every day. Then the color may become dark. Take care of your Flowerhorn and gradually it will develop a Kok that will make you a proud owner of it.

Flowerhorn Big Head

Frequently Asked questions

Where to keep Flowerhorns?

Flowerhorns do not demand any special kind of aquarium other than that it should be spacious. Being a tropical fish they thrive better where the temperature is between 28 to 31 ℃. It is better if the water in the aquarium is alkaline with pH level lying in between 7.5 to 8. As the health of the fish depends upon the pH level it should be kept checked regularly. A filtration system within the aquarium will also be great for keeping them.

Why is the Flowerhorn aggressive?

Flowerhorn is aggressive by nature. It is believed that those Flowerhorns who have big Kok are more aggressive than ones who do not have big Kok. By nature, they are very territorial and they do not want to share the space with any other fish in the aquarium. Sometimes they are found to show their aggressiveness on another fish of their type. Thus, be careful when you are keeping couples together.
In order to decrease the aggressiveness of the Flowerhorn, you can increase the space as much as possible. The bigger space they get the less aggressive they will be. However, this is not true for certain types of Flowerhorns. Try to keep them along in the aquarium as they do not like to share their space with any other fish.

Why does the Flowerhorn hide?

You keep a Flowerhorn in your aquarium because you want to watch its beauty. Now, if the Flowerhorn hides then how can you enjoy the beauty of its Kok? Naturally there is not much reason that a Flowerhorn will like to hide, but still, you may find some of them doing so because they may not be habituated with the surrounding environment. It happens most when you transfer the Flowerhorn from one place to another. To make it feel comfortable you can arrange for a hiding place too. Gradually you will find that the fish is no shyer!

Why is Flowerhorn not eating?

In order to increase the size if the Kok your Flowerhorn must be fed right. Thus, when it does not eat properly it is an issue that needs your attention. The first reason for the Flowerhorn not to eat is that it can be stressed. The tension can be due to change in environment or addition of another fish in the aquarium. Whatever is the reason you should be very careful.
If there are no such changes in the surrounding of the Flowerhorn and it is still not eating then it may be sick. It may be suffering from any of the disease namely Hexamita, Fin and Tail Rot, Ichthyopthirius Multifilis, and Gill Disease. There are different signs to understand that. If you feel that the fish may have some disease then try to find out the symptoms.

Sexing Flowerhorn Fish – How To Do That?

Male and Female Flowerhorn How To Sexing

Flowerhorn cichlids fish is ornamental aquarium fish. It is more popular for its vivid colors and uniquely shaped head for which it is named.
As far as to determine its sex, it is quite difficult to find whether it is male or female. But here we have provided easy ways to find out.

So how to define if the Flowerhorn is male or female? In general male Flowerhorn fishes are usually larger than female in size, they have a greater coloring, they are more aggressive and they have long filamentous fins. Also, their reproductive system has a V-shape. Females commonly tend to have small dark spots on the dorsal fin. They are less aggressive and present, unlike males, their U-shaped reproductive system.

Male And Female Flowerhorn

Let us find out in a better way how to identify whether it is male or female:

To know whether it is female or male Flowerhorn fish, the only and easiest way to look inside the fish tank. It is because it is a hybrid fish and it never lived outside of captivity. Production of Flowerhorn fish is used with some special techniques since years.
So here we have provided some of the signs to identify whether it is male or female.
•    In order to identify, you have to wait until its size reached 4 inches or about 10 cm long. Differential characteristics do not develop before it reaches on this stage of its life fully.
•    Check properly the part of the anal pore. If it is a female Flowerhorn fish, the shape will be of “U” and if it is a male, that shape will be of “V”.

Female Flowerhorn

•    Another easiest way to compare the size of its hump. Typically, when this fish becomes adult, the size of the male’s hump is larger than the female.
•    The action of Flowerhorn fish is also one of the ways to identify whether it is male or female. You should pay close attention to its actions. When female fish lay their eggs, she remains close to them. And male Flowerhorn fish remains in surrounding areas to make sure no any other fish stay away from the eggs.

You must be interested to know more about this Flowerhorn species. So here we are giving some more details about this fish.

Some more interesting information about Flowerhorn Fish:

Origin of Flowerhorn:

The origin of Flowerhorn species officially is in the year 1994 in Malaysia country. However, given the eastern secrecy that has involved this fish since its inception. It is believed that these data are only speculative. It is believed that these species involved in the selective crossing of the species may be, evident, large American cichlids like Amphilophus Itrinellus and a Trimaculatus.

Amphilophus Itrinellus

However, with the appearance of new strains, many robust, large and colorful fish were being sought. This also leads us to observe, in certain varieties, similar genes of Cyclids like the old Synspila, the Cichlasoma parrot, the Amphilophus Sagitae, the old Argentea etc.
Being a species literally created by the human being, coming from selective breeding, it does not have a natural habitat.


Naturally it does not possess it, however, in some Malaysian and Thai rivers, some specimens have been found which were undoubtedly released by the hand of a man causing imbalances in local ecosystems.


This largely depends on the species which are a part of its genetics, common in these fishes is a robust and have wide body, anal and dorsal fins with a pointed end, prominent lips in certain varieties, pronounced hump. In various cases, they are very large which also depends on sexual, food and chemical factors.

Flowerhorn Hump, Kok, Head


It is difficult to determine since with the wide range of existing varieties there is a huge range of colors ranging from the red base, brown, blue, orange, to specimens with multicolored combinations, gold, gray, green etc. This fish also has a beautiful pearly commonly blue, green or white.

Both females and males have the call flower line which is not more than a horizontal black line which depends on the variety and state of the fishes will be visible or not. The Flowerhorn fishes can present different colorations in their eyes, red, blue, yellow, orange, and violet even white.


This robust fish easily reaches 30 cm, there are exceptions in which even exceed this measure, reaching sizes close to 33 or 35 cm.

Big Flowerhorn


The temperature of Flowerhorn fishes remain from 24 C to 29 C, the ideal is between 26 C and 28 C.


They support a wide range of values. The best thing for them will be to keep them in slightly alkaline waters. A ph between 7.0 and 8.0 is ideal. Its total hardness is between 8 and 20 dGH. It should be mentioned that the Flowerhorn despite not being a sensitive fish, in the presence of imbalances comes to show an opaque tonality and its horizontal line very tenuous. They require good oxygenation.


Given the size that reaches this fish, it will be best to mount a specific aquarium from 200 liters. If you wish to keep a couple of Flowerhorn fishes, it is recommended to keep 300 liters of water. The decoration will preferably be flat rocks at the bottom side of the tank, some robust trunk and a thick and dark substrate. The Flowerhorn fishes tend to move a lot in the gravel so the decision is to add substrate or is not personal. In some varieties the presence of dark substrate makes the colors of these beautiful fishes stand out, even more, the decision is free.

Large Aquarium

The best thing for Flowerhorn fishes is that you do not require much to decorate your tank as Flowerhorn fish likes to swim freely all the time.


Flowehorn fishes are omnivorous and undemanding in terms of their nutrition, voraciously accept commercial leaflets, pellets, even certain insects. This fish for its proper growth and development requires a diet high in protein which we can provide by means of live or frozen food, especially bloodworm or brine shrimp. It is advisable to hydrate all granules or scales before giving it to our fish since sometimes it suffers from intestinal occlusion due to omitting the above.


They are very aggressive fish that should preferably be kept in specific aquariums or large, perhaps their habitat is achieved in a community aquarium but this should be populated if at all, by large Siluriformes. It is very common for the male to end up killing the female because she is not sexually mature or is not breeding season, this will be very important details to follow if you are planning to keep a couple in the same tank. You should remember that they are monogamous fish.


They reproduce with relative ease, the male Flowerhorn begin to become very dominant. In this time the male tends to have a very pronounced hump in addition to very intense colors. The female on the other side will be a bit opaque and both female and male will begin to frenetically exacerbate the substrate. Their eggs will be deposited on the flat and smooth surfaces which can be rocks or the bottom of the fish tank.

It is worth mentioning that they are large layouts that easily reach the 1000 eggs. The female Flowerhorn fish will be dedicated to taking care of her offspring of any intruder that is approaching even it is said of cases in which the female comes to kill the male. On the other hand, the male will be even more aggressive and will take care of an area delimited by the couple.

Flowerhorn Laying Eggs

The eggs will hatch approximately 72 hours or 3 days after being conceived. The robust fry will soon need to be fed, ideally nauplii of brine shrimp, gradually they can be given life and gradually commercial feed. In these moments it will be necessary to separate the male conveniently.

Following are some of the Q&A that usually comes to your mind:

Q. Do all Flowerhorn fishes get their hump?
A. They do not have their pattern, full coloration, and red eyes until they become mature about 8 to 10 inches. The hum on its head is also called as a KOK. Usually only male Flowerhorn fish develops a hump which is made up of water and fatty tissues.

Q. Is Flowerhorn fish edible?
A. Flowerhorn fishes care for humans as a pet and they keep them in their homes. As per a belief, it brings good luck. However, Flowerhorn fishes are not edible.

Q. Can we keep Flowerhorn fish with other fishes in the same tank?
A. There are certain fishes are good for mates with Flowerhorn and can be kept together such as Plecostomus, Leopard Pleco, Black Pacu, Tiger Oscar, and Jaguar Cichlid. However, it is advisable to keep Flowerhorn fish alone or you have to watch the tank so they will not kill each other.

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