Complete Guide to Flowerhorn Breeds & Types

When you first get introduced into the world of Flowerhorn fish you’ll probably feel overwhelmed. There are so many different types, strains, variations and sizes. It’s important to learn as much as possible about these amazing fish before buying your own.

If you rush into selecting a Flowerhorn before doing your research you might end up with buyers remorse, because you didn’t even know a particular color variety was available. This very thing happened to me the first time I bought a Flowerhorn.

I saw a beautiful kamfa at my local fish store and just pulled the trigger, while she was a beautiful fish with a great personality, but I would have much preferred the look of a Thai Silk, or Super Red Dragon. My goal is to inform you about all the available Flowerhorn breeds, so you can find the perfect Flowerhorn to keep.

Here is a summary of what you’ll see in this Flowerhorn Breeds article:

  1. Flowerhorn Origins
  2. 11 Amazing Flowerhorn Types
  3. Early Flowerhorn Breed Strains
  4. Most Popular Flowerhorn Types
  5. Flowerhorn Types with Pictures & Prices
  6. Selecting Your Flowerhorn Breed

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Flowerhorn types

11 Flowerhorn Types

Here are the 11 most popular Flowerhorn breeds available today. Note the types below include traditional Flowerhorn and Parrot types which are commonly bred with Flowerhorns.

1. Kamfa

Kamfa is one of the most popular and finest Flowerhorn species on the market for its desirable and unique traits. This special strain was hybrid-crossed using Vieja and any Parrot Cichlid. It was first available in the year 2000 in Malaysia and Taiwan. 

The Kamfa strains’ body traits make fish hobbyists curious to preserve and collect the various types of this species. They have huge head bumps, small and round mouths, yellow or white sunken eyes, and strong tails. 

When keeping multiple Kamfa Flowerhorn, you must consider having a 125-175 gallon tank, water quality and filtration, and tank substrate. You must also not use plants, as Kamfa can wreck such tank elements. 

2. King Kong Parrot

The King Kong Parrot was bred first in 1986 in Taiwan. However, the cross-breeding species are yet to be determined, but most guesses say it is from Gold Severums, RedHeads, Midas Cichlids, and Red Devils. 

Additionally, the creation of this species has raised an ethical fishkeeping method in the early 2000s. This is after the demand for King Kong Parrot continues to rise. Some activists then pointed out that this method was deformation to meet people’s aesthetic needs. 

Meanwhile, King Kong Parrots have an average lifespan of 10 years. With the appearance they are 8-9 inches long, have red to yellow shades, and rounded body shapes. They are also known for their beak-shaped nose and triangle-shaped lips. 

3. Blood Parrot

Bloody Parrot, as commonly known, is an aquarium hybrid fish made by cross-breeding the redhead cichlid and the Midas. It also originated in Taiwan in 1986 and is popular for its bloody red color. 

Cross breeders of this fish also face controversy for the deformities in its characteristics. However, its ability to exist with other species in a community environment makes it popular and perfect in home aquariums. 

Blood Parrots are also easily noticeable for their huge eyes and tiny rounded mouths. If you have them at home, remember that they can’t be with aggressive fishes, as they’ll have a hard time picking up food and surviving. 

4. Thai Silk

Thai Silk species, also known as the Titanium Flowerhorn, are usually light blue and have full-body metallic scales. They are also artificial fishes whose genetic history is unknown until now. 

These aquarium fishes are also different from other Flowerhorn strains as they are less aggressive and can coexist with other cichlids. But it’s still best to watch them for the first few days to see how they perform. 

In their care guide, you need to note that Thai Silk Flowerhorns need at least 80 degrees Fahrenheit in temperature. You must also maintain good water quality for these little species to showcase their optimum color and health potential. 

5. King Kamfa

The King Kamfa species are from the Kamfa family, originating in Thailand but famously known in Vietnam. 

King Kamfa shares the same characteristics and appearance as the usual Kamfa. However, they have more vibrant colors, vivid patterns, and the determiner between the two: pristine pearls. 

This species starts as a Kamfa, but they are developed into becoming a King Kamfa. But they are very rare and hard to find. Only 10% of the small portion of Kamfa hatch is blooming to transform into a King Kamfa. 

Meanwhile, like the Kamfa species, you should keep King Kamfa alone as they are a little aggressive. It would help if you also had a huge tank and quality filtration as they produce more waste.

6. Red Monkey

From the term itself, the Red Monkeys or Super Red Monkeys (SRM) are a Flowerhorn species with a full vibrant red color. Other characteristics unique to this species are its yellow eyes and wide and pearl-free body. 

When you buy one, you might get a faded red color because the deep red grows as the SRM grows. You can also check if the SRM is of good quality if it does not have white eyes. 

Additionally, SRM breeders also pointed out how this Flowerhorn became intelligent and interactive over time. Also, remember that SRMs are better kept themselves than let coexist with tank mates or other Flowerhorns. 

7. Golden Base

The Golden Base is a Kamfa Flowerhorn species, a group of different varieties. These differences include the Faders and Golden Trimac. 

Golden Base has a great red coloration, but you have to maintain them properly not to fade. Their colors are commonly red and yellow, with red being the most sought-after by various hobbyists. They are also famous for their Kok, the bump in the head. 

If you have one at home, ensure that Golden Base is placed in at least a 75-gallon tank with amazing water filtration and flow. You must maintain the water weekly and feed them with NLS, bio gold, and other appropriate food to keep their colors vibrant.

8. Zhen Zhu

This next Flowerhorn breed is one of the most common and popular breeds in the US. Hobbyists see Zhen Zhu (ZZ) fishes as a species that develop depending on how you treat them. They are also popular with the name Pearl Flowerhorn,

Zhen Zhu has many strains, and the country of origin and timeline is key in identifying them. But in general, ZZs are more accessible as they don’t require many unique practices aside from breeding. 

As per its appearance and characteristics, it might greatly vary depending on where it’s bred. The popular ZZ strains in the market are the 2003 Red Dragon and Thai Red Dragon. 

9. Kamfa Malau

The Kamfa Malaus is a Flowerhorn made by cross-breeding a Malau Female and a Kamfa Male. The male and female Kamfa Malau are easy to identify as the females don’t show much color, while males have Kok. The Kok is the head bump common in ZZ and Kamfa species. 

Generally, the common appearances of Kamfa Malau are their huge, slightly red eyes and small rounded mouths. Their colors are also unnoticeable until they reach a required age or size. If you’re curious, they have various colors, from red and orange to a slight blue and green mix. 

You must keep this aquarium fish in a 55-gallon tank with an 80–85 °F water temperature.

10. Golden Monkey

The Golden Monkeys are one of the few bigger Flowerhorn species that can reach 15 inches in length. They are a hybrid cichlid known for their bright orange-red colors with black and yellow markings on fins and tails. 

Since it has vibrant colors, Golden Monkeys attract attention easily, so they are popular in the home and public fish tanks. And with their desirable aesthetics, Golden Monkeys are expensive, with prices increasing as they get bigger. 

It might also be costly to maintain as they need larger tanks with hiding places. Golden Monkeys are also not advisable to exist with fishes the same size. 

However, there are still fish they can consider tank mates, like Silver Dollar Fish, Common Pleco, and Giant Gourami. 

11. Red Texas

Red Texas came from the cross-breeding of male Texas cichlid and a female Red Parrot. Breeders pointed out that this type of Flowerhorn combines three cichlid genes. This is because Red Parrot already came from Redhead and Amphilophus.

Additionally, this cichlid is famous for its vibrant red and black color. However, Red Texas is still at its earlier stage of development, resulting in a variety of quality. Meaning it is seldom to find the appropriate brilliant colors. 

But if you have one, place them in large tanks with sand and gravel substrate. Red Texas are omnivores, so they eat insects, worms, plants, and other small vertebrates. 

Early Flowerhorn Breed Strains

The Flowerhorn is of course a hybrid fish created around 1993 first by mix breeding a Amphilophus Citrinellus or Midas cichlid with a Cichlasoma Trimaculatum or Trimac.

Below is a complete graphic showing many of the original Flowerhorn variations, including the Golden Monkey, Living Legend, Tan King, Perfect Miracle and more!

Most Popular Flowerhorn Types

Whenever you go into a tropical fish store and see a Flowerhorn you are most likely going to see a Red Dragon or Super Red Dragon Flowerhorn.

The Super Red Dragon is a large sized fish that will often times display a prominent nuchal hump or kok. Their colors fade from their heads a bright red color into a gold/white color through to the tail fins.

Flowerhorn Types with Prices

Here is a comprehensive breakdown of Flowerhorn breeds and their prices. Note that all prices are for fry 1″ to 2″ in size. As Flowerhorns develop and show more potential the prices can increase dramatically. For example the going price for an adult Super Red Monkey is over $1000.

Flowerhorn TypePrice
Red Dragon

$14.99
Thai Silk$12.99
Red Monkey$30.00
Kamfa$25.00
King Kamfa$50.00
Zhen Zhu$25.00
Golden Base$45.00
Kamfa Malau$30.00
Super Red Dragon$25.00
Parrot Fish$9.99
King Kong Parrot$14.00

Selecting Your Flowerhorn Breed

Choosing a Flowerhorn breed is completely up to your preferences. Simply decide what fish looks the best to you and make a selection. However, there a few critical factors to consider depending on what your intentions are with your Flowerhorn.

For example if you want keep a single fish in an aquarium, you options fully open. Any of the aforementioned Flowerhorns will work perfectly in these circumstances. But if you want to keep your fish with other fish in a more community style aquarium, you will have more success keeping one of the parrot species.

Blood Parrots are more suitable for being kept with other fish because while they can be aggressive their mouth structure doesn’t allow them to bite down like a Flowerhorn.

If size matters to you and you need a smaller fish because you don’t have a large aquarium, consider getting a shortbody Flowerhorn or a Bonsai Flowerhorn. You get all the same traits, personality and even aggression but in a short compact package.

Overall, select the Flowerhorn type that is most appealing to YOU! My personal favorites are the Super Red Dragons, Super Red Monkeys, Thai Silks, and Fireman’s Dream.

Flowerhorn Breed FAQs

What fish can flowerhorn breed with?

Flowerhorns themselves are hybrid fish, a combination of many cichlids like the Trimac, Red Devil, Midas, Vieja, and Texas cichlid. Due to their genetic makeup Flowerhorns can breed with any other type of cichlid. In fact many people have experimented and bred their Flowerhorns to create modern strains like the Fireman’s Dream variant.

What does SRD flowerhorn mean?

When referencing Flowerhorn fish SRD is an acronym for Super Red Dragon.

What is a Super Red Dragon flowerhorn?

Most Popular Flowerhorn Types, red dragon flowerhorn

A Super Red Dragon Flowerhorn is a large cichlid often times imported from Malaysia, Vietnam, or Thailand. Super Red Dragons are known for their amazing bold colors, and awesome personalities. Many fish keepers consider them like aquatic puppies!

What is a Golden Monkey Flowerhorn?

golden monkey flowerhorn

The Golden Monkey is a flowerhorn variation which is fully red in yellow or gold in color. They are often times classified as Golden Base Flowerhorns.

Flowerhorn Breeds & Types Summary

Hopefully you found value in this Flowerhorn Breeds guide! We listed out 11 of the most popular flowerhorn strains, Flowerhorn fish and even discussed each type in depth. We went on to talk about the early Flowerhorn varieties, showed photos of each Flowerhorn type, and even gave the expected prices one could expect to pay for a small 1″ to 2″ fish.

Lastly, we answered the frequently asked questions about Flowerhorn breeds! Here’s to you finding your dream Fish. Thanks for reading!

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