|classic Red dragon strain|
*please note this is an incomplete and working list*
If you would like to see a strain added please send a pic and description to my PM box
As stated above the ZZ category is very wide and encompassing. Within this breed category breeders have created a tremendous amount of variation. Each subset strain has it's own unique characteristics, which means two very different looking fish can be classified as ZZ. Each country and breeder has their own take on what a ZZ should look like and what traits they find desirable. Some ZZ have huge heads with no color and weak fins while others have hard heads with strong fins and deep red color. It is therefore necessary to delve into the individual subset strains. This is difficult for two reasons, firstly there is no stopping a breeder from naming a new strain with no new or different characteristics but simply to differentiate himself/herself from other breeders. And two, the flowerhorn hobby and especially the ZZ breed is constantly evolving. Chances are as soon as this list is completed it will immediately need revision.
Therefore in order to understand the ZZ strain better, we can refer back to the 4 pure cichlid chart and note that the ZZ side of the family tree is based on the Trimac. Some characteristics, with all of the cross-breeding happening, are still around today. The head flower, spotted flower line, red eyes, red breast, green pearl sheen and rounded tail all point back to the pure species Trimac Cichlid. The more traits from a particular fish that you can tie back to the original 4 pure species Cichlids the easier it will be to identify it. IE the more traits in common with a Trimac, the more likely the fish is a ZZ. Conversley the more characteristics in common with a Syn, the more likely the fish is a Kamfa.
Thai Red Dragon :