Parrot fish is the name of more than 80 species, or types, of tropical fish found near coral reefs. Parrot fish were named for their birdlike beak, which they use to scrape up coral and other food.
I see that you recommended feeding 3x/day
When choosing tankmates, one of the bigger risks is that the parrots won't get enough to eat. They're slower fish, and their mouths are misshapen. As a result, they cannot compete with fast-moving fish for food, and they cannot handle a diet of flakes. Flakes should never be a staple of any fish over 3 to 4 inches anyhow. A quality, sinking pellet food should be offered to them, and the aquarist must ensure that the parrots are actually eating. If kept with giant danios, rainbowfish, tinfoil barbs, or similar fast fish, by the time the plodding parrot realizes there's food in the tank, it is all gone. Pellets offered must be soft enough for the parrot to crush; they don't have fully functional mouths like other cichlids, and standard cichlid pellets are often unmanageable. There are a number of pellets marketed just for parrots, or simply choose one that's not quite so crunchy.
Blood parrot cichlids can eat a variety of food
Blood Parrots have many features that set them apart from other cichlids. The most obvious is the "beak" they possess for a mouth. A true Parrot Cichlid is unable to close its mouth, but instead, uses the muscles in the throat to chew or crush food. It's a misconception that these fish can't eat from the surface. Every Parrot Cichlid owner I have encountered, including myself, report that theirs eat easily from the surface.
It's also been commonly stated that Parrot Cichlid's have deformed swim bladders. These organs control buoyancy and allow the fish to maintain a certain depth in the water column. If they do have swim bladder problems, it's not evident in the ones I keep. Many people think that, due to this deformity, the fish must constantly swim to stay afloat and keep level. In most cases, I have also found this to be untrue.
I can however, agree with the fact that Parrot Cichlid's possess a deformed spine, this is one the reasons they have such a unique shape. I don't believe it to be much of a problem for them. I've had reports of Parrot Cichlids living perfectly good lives for up to 10 years.
A true Parrot Cichlid will also have larger than normal, bright yellowish-green eyes. Many have an oddly shaped or overly large iris. Some have a oval iris while others have a round iris. Some have a streak leading from the iris to the outer edge of the eye. One of ours have this feature and it gives the illusion of wearing mascara. Very cute! Their eyes are definitely one of the traits that gives Parrot Cichlid's such a great personality.
What are a parrot fishs favorite foods? - Parrot Cichlid