Tag Archive: cichlids

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Perciformes
Family: Cichlidae

Genus/species: Altolamprologus calvus

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: The body colors will vary between a black to a light whitish gray,and be with or without a yellow cast. They are laterally compressed body, a steep sloping forehead, stripes that are more apparent on the head and collar region, and brilliant white spots that decorate the posterior two-thirds of their flanks. Large dorsal fin running along the entire length of the back. It has a scaleless area on its forehead right between the eyes. Hence its species name “calvus” means “bald”

Length up to six inches, Males are about one-third larger than females.

DISTRIBUTION: One of 200 Cichlid species in Lake Tanganyika.
HABITAT: Rocky areas, particularly the reef-like structures in the lake.

DIET: Predator, and specializes in snatching young cichlids and tiny crustaceans found between rock crevices and rock piles.

Black Calvus  Altolamprologus calvus

REPRODUCTION: Spawning takes place in a cave, shell, or crevice too small for the male to enter. The male will release his milt at the entrance. The female will stay inside fanning the eggs and protecting them while the male guards outside. Typical spawns may number as many as 200 which take more than a week before they hatch and are mature enough to move out on their own.

Longevity: up to 8 years

IUCN Near Threatened                                                                                                                                                                        Excess sediment has its most severe effects on the rocky areas inhabited by Altolamprologus calvus, filling crevices and blanketing its food source. In addition there are rising levels of toxic heavy metals in the lake’s water.


California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Animal Attractions 2017

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/8393611475/in/album-72157629304397467/

Archive www.arkive.org/tanganyika-blackfin/altolamprologus-calvus/

 IUCN www.iucnredlist.org/details/60455/0

 Animal World  animal world.com/encyclo/fresh/cichlid/WhitePearlyCalvus.ph

 Ron’s WordPress Shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-qc



Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Percifomes (Perch-likes)
Family: Cichlidae (Cichlids)

Genus/species: Ptychochromis sp. “Tarantsy”

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Males are generally silver with a faint black strip mid-body and a spot on the gill plate. Females are darker in color overall, especially when breeding.
Length to 16cm (6.5 inches).


DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Tarantsy River and Lake Tarantsy, near Amboasary and Fort Duaphin, Madagascar.


REPRODUCTION: Substrate spawning egg layers.

REMARKS; Little information is available.

Madagascar MA04


Greater Chicago Cichlid Association:  www.gcca.net/madagascan-cichlids/139-ptychochromis-sp-nor…

Ron’s flickr  https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/8342758012/in/set-72157620708610230

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Vetted Jenoh Gonzales Biologist, Steinhart Aquarium
California Academy of Sciences 1-7-15

Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinoptgerygii
Order: Periciformes
Family: Chichlidae (Cichlids)

Genus/species: Paratilapia polleni

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Mid-sized cichlid, growing to 30 cm (12 in) in length; males grow up to a third again as large as females; black velvet basic coloration with pattern of blue and gold spangling. Distinct spot present in dorsal fin of juveniles and sexually quiescent adults.
Adult male fish are much larger than females and develop longer extensions on the dorsal and anal fins. They also tend to have a more rounded head shape.


DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Endemic to Madagascar found in freshwater at altitudes up to 1,500 m (5000 ft) and exhibit tolerance for a broad temperature range.

DIET IN THE WILD: Carnivorous, juveniles feed chiefly on planktonic crustaceans and insect larvae; larger fish are crepuscular predators with a preference for small fishes, but also take invertebrates as opportunity presents.

REPRODUCTION: Marakely parenting is a two-fish job. They are monogamous, biparentally custodial substrate spawners. Pairs defend a territory and both sexes assume a velvety black base coloration as spawning approaches. They excavate a gravel pit and spawn in it excluding other fish from area. Each egg has a long adhesive fiber that adheres to other egg fibers, forming a rope of eggs (up to a thousand) rolled into an egg mass. The male patrols the perimeter of the territory as the fry become mobile four days post-hatching. Both parents follow the school of fry, retrieving stragglers by mouth and spitting them back into the school. Parental care continues for about three weeks. These protective behaviors promote reproductive success common to many cichlid species.

PREDATORS: In the southern part of its range, the exotic spotted snakehead is both a competitor and predator. Paratilapia polleni have lived for up to 15 years in aquariums.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List; Vulnerable (VU)   Qualifies as Vulnerable on account of its limited distribution and fragmented habitat (mainly due to deforestation of river catchments) which are causing a continued decline in available habitat and the number of mature individuals in the population. 

A Marakely captive breeding program is supported by many aquariums and zoos.

REMARKS. The most primitive living representatives of the large Cichlidae family.  Some of Madagascar’s freshwater fish species have ancestors dating back to the Jurassic period.

Madagascar MA04


fishbase  www.fishbase.org/summary/Paratilapia-polleni.html

IUCN  www.iucnredlist.org/details/16199/0

California Academy of Sciences Rainforest Docent Training Manual 2014

Ron’s flickr  https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/3637198814/in/set-72157620708610230/

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Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Cichlidae (Cichlids)
Subfamily: Ptychochrominae

Genus/species: Ptychochromis grandidieri

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Yellowish to golden base coloration with a horizontal series of well-defined black blotches situated mid-laterally on the flank. Length to 21 cm (8.25 inches).

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Eastern drainages of Madagascar. Found in fresh water in areas of high forest as well as brackish water.

DIET IN THE WILD: Invertebrates, plant materials.

REPRODUCTION: Egg layers; both male and female care for fry. The rate of breeding would allow the population to double in less than 15 months.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List Least concern (LC)  Common throughout its range, which extends along much of eastern coastal Madagascar. Vulnerable to introduced Asian snakehead fish.


LOCATION: Rainforest Madagascar MA04 


fishbase fishbase.sinica.edu.tw/summary/Ptychochromis-grandidieri….

Encyclopedia of Life eol.org/pages/210956/details

IUCN Red List Least concern (LC) www.iucnredlist.org/details/44502/0

Ron’s flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/sets/72157627949403670/

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-yz

Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Cichlidae (Cichlids)
Subfamily: Cichlasomatinae

Genus/species: Hypselecara temporalis

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Max. length: to (30cm). An egg-shaped fish with a small mouth. The eye iris may range in color from amber-gold to bright red. Body color is a mustard-yellow with a large, characteristic black blotch at the mid-section of the body and often a horizontal stripe. On the caudal peduncle are some similar, but smaller markings. The belly and throat regions are bright red as is the area near the gill covering and the surrounding parts of the eye. The fins are red with some mustard-yellow areas.  

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: South America: Amazon River basin. Found in slow flowing, turbid water.

DIET IN THE WILD: Algae, supplemented with planktonic and terrestrial invertebrates.

REPRODUCTION: Sexes separate. Adult males grow larger and have a hump on their head. Fertilization external. Eggs are deposited upon vertical substrates and guarded by both parents. 


CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List and CITES: Not Evaluated


fishbase www.fishbase.org/summary/12323

 eol Encyclopedia of life http://eol.org/pages/212750/details

Ron’s WordPress shortlink:  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-b0

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/15442981620/in/set-72157620568438047/

Kingdom: Animalia
Class: Actinopterygii (Ray-finned fishes),
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Cichlidae (Cichlids).

Genus/species: Heros appendiculatus aka Heros efasciatus

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Compressed body is silvery; five black vertical bars punctuate the lower half of its flanks, a sixth extends to its dorsal fin. Length to 14 cm (5.5 inches).

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Amazon River basin to Upper Orinoco River drainage in Colombia and Venezuela. Found in lakes, standing water, or slow moving water with copious vegetation.   

DIET: Fruits, seeds, green algae and detritus.  

REPRODUCTION:  Guarders, clutch tenders. Up to 1000 eggs are deposited on flat stones or on roots; both parents participate in caring for eggs and larvae.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List; Not Evaluated.

Wild type :wild -type olive green

Turquoise severum (Heros appendiculatus)MG_0179


LOCATION: Flooded Amazon Tunnel, AM11


Ron’s WordPress shortlink: http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-9x

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/8358691491/in/set-72157620568438047/

 fishbase  www.fishbase.org/summary/52199

 Encyclopedia of life  eol.org/pages/203885/details



Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Cichlidae (Cichlids)

Genus/species: Satanoperca leucosticta

 GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: An elongated, laterally compressed greenish-yellow to yellow-brown cichlid with a large, rounded head with light spots on the cheek and operculum.  Max. length 15 cm (6 inches).


White-spotted Eartheater 2975336785_8bdf4b4483_b

 DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: South America: Essequibo River in Guyana and Nickerie River in Suriname.

 DIET IN THE WILD: Common name derived from this fish’s almost constant digging in the sand for prey (insects, crustaceans).

 REPRODUCTION: Fish in this genus are mouth brooders. The parents take turns brooding and spit the fry into the partner’s mouth when their shift is over. 

 CONSERVATION: IUCN Redlist; Not Evaluated.

 REMARKS: Genus name translates as “eartheater.” This common name applies to many species. A small, but popular food fish. 

 Flooded Amazon,  Anaconda Exhibit, AM03


Ron’s WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1o1

Fishbase search.yahoo.com/search?ei=utf-8&fr=aaplw&p=www.f…

 Mongabay.com fish.mongabay.com/species/Satanoperca_leucosticta.html

 Cichlid forum: www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/sat_cf_leucosticta_amazonr…

2-2-09, 10-10-13, 9-1-14 10-19-14

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Cichlidae (Cichlids)
Subfamily: Cichlasomatinae

Genus/species: Pterophyllum altum

Altum Angelfish 4689972848_189e460e8f_b

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Extremely compressed silvery body with two broad dark vertical bands. Remarkably long trailing pelvic fins. Altum refers to the dramatic height of their dorsal and anal fins. Length to 18 cm (7 inches). Max height 20 cm (7.87 inches). Orbital indentation differentiates from Pterophyllum scalare.

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: South America: Amazon basin, in the upper Rio Negro drainage; Orinoco River basin.


REPRODUCTION and DEVELOPMENT: External fertilization. Monogamous; pairs persist until partner dies or is separated. Clutch-tending guarders.

Altum Angelfish 3787890518_a572b4929f_b

MORTALITY/LONGEVITY: Preyed upon by other fishes. Subject to bacterial diseases and protozoan, fungal and worm infestations.

CONSERVATION: IUCN: Not evaluated.

Flooded Amazon AM05

Ref. fishbase, EOL

flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/4689972848/in/set-72157608376694453/

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Kingdom: Animalia
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes  (Perch-likes)
Family: Cichlidae  (Cichlids)Genus/species: Geophagus altifrons

Earth eating cichlid 2975336785_c7f6e17516_o

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Protruding mouth. Head has red weblike markings. Spiky fins.

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: South America: Amazon basin in freshwater rivers.

DIET IN THE WILD: Common name derived from this fish’s almost constant digging in the sand for prey.

REPRODUCTION: Fish in this genus are mouth brooders. The parents take turns brooding and spit the fry into the partner’s mouth when their shift is over.

CONSERVATION: Not evaluated.

REMARKS: Genus name translates as “eartheater.” This common name applies to many species. A small, but popular food fish.

Flooded Amazon

flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/2975336785/in/set-72157608614099673/

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Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Cichlidae (Cichlids)

Genus/species: Tilapia buttikoferi

Hornet Tilapia 4562623192_2331f3feaf_b-2

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Length to 12 inches. Color is yellowish-grey, with 7-8 broad, oblique brownish-black bars, broader than the light spaces

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Native to Western Africa. Found in coastal rivers and streams.

DIET IN THE WILD: A voracious omnivore, T. buttikoferi feeds on fish and crustaceans and vegetable matter.

CONSERVATION: IUCN least concern.

Hornet Tilapia 9260875598_b14d228439_o

REMARKS: After salmonids and carps, tilapia are fast growing and easily bred. Tilapia are the most important fishes in aquaculture by the gross weight of production. They have imported and bred throughout the world for both aquatic and nutritious purposes and are legal in Texas and Florida.

Swamp Cichlids SW02

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