The photo is of a young (about 3.5 months old) male Gold OB Peacock Cichlid.
This is a domestic (commercial) strain we developed starting in 2003 from fish we acquired from a Florida fish farm. From those original fish we have developed several color varieties. In our Gold OB line, we are able to select for gold females and are females are getting more and more colorful. In fact, it is sometimes very difficult to sex these fish under 4-5 months since both sexes are colorful. It’s only after the males grow pointed dorsal and anal fins and a mature head profile that they are easily distinguishable.
The genetics of this fish, other than selection for gold color, is the same as other Peacock Cichlids. In Peacock Cichlids, which are hybrids of Lake Malawi cichlids and have been around for decades, the OB pattern (blotching) is a dominant gene. Unlike our Blue OBs, which sometimes throw non-OBs, our Gold OB are true breeding. I’m not sure, but I think gold is recessive to the wild gray body color. In any event our breeding colony produces only OBs, most of which are gold. The occasional Skyblue OB does show up in offspring, but this is becoming rarer as such fish are removed from the breeding population.