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Apistogramma nijsseni KULLANDER, 1979

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

The genus Apistogramma is among the most speciose of South American cichlid genera with around 70 species valid at present but many more awaiting description. In addition many species exist in two or more geographical colour forms which may or may not turn out to be distinct in the future. Hobbyists tend to label these with collection data if available in order to avoid mixing them and the potential of hybridisation.

Member species have also been organised into a series of species lineages, complexes and groups by authors in order to better separate them. Such lists have been augmented by fish that have appeared in the aquarium trade and are in a state of near-constant flux

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Etroplus suratensis (BLOCH, 1790)

Green Chromide

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

This species is euryhaline and mostly inhabits brackish estuaries, coastal lagoons and the lower reaches of rivers.

It also occurs in freshwater habitats, however, including a number of inland lakes in Sri Lanka although it appears to have been introduced intentionally.

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Apistogramma borellii (REGAN, 1906)

Umbrella Cichlid

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

Numerous ornamental forms of this species have been selectively-bred for the aquarium trade. It has also been assigned the ‘A’ number A234 under the DATZ system with possibly conspecific, related forms similarly numbered A103, A104, and A105 depending on locality.

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Apistogramma cacatuoides HOEDEMAN, 1951

Cockatoo Cichlid

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

Numerous ornamental forms of this species have been selectively line-bred for the aquarium trade, vernacular names for which include "sunset", "sunburst", "double red", "triple red", "gold", "white gold", "orange flash" and "albino". It has also been assigned the 'A' number A200 under the DATZ system with possibly conspecific, related forms similarly numbered A201, A202 and A203 depending on locality.

Th…

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Acarichthys heckelii (MÜLLER & TROSCHEL, 1849)

Threadfin Acara

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

The genus Acarichthys remains monotypic and was resdescribed by Kullander (1986) who characterised it by the following: lack of epibranchial lobe; comparatively few (12-14)rays; pelvic fins with relatively broad tips (branches of the first ray are equal in length or the inner is slightly longer); possession of a single supraneural plus 14-15 vertebrae (these characters taken as a combination); no caudal extensions to swim bladder; no caudal ribs.

Its current taxonomic position is based largel…

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Mikrogeophagus ramirezi (MYERS & HARRY, 1948)

Ram

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

M. ramirezi is also known by the names ‘Ramirez’ dwarf cichlid’ and ‘butterfly cichlid’ and is among the more popular dwarf cichlids in the aquarium hobby.

As a result, it is produced on a commercial basis in huge numbers and a number of ornamental strains have been developed including ‘gold’, ‘long-finned’ (both blue and gold forms; also traded as ‘lyre-tail’, ‘veil-tail’ and ‘hi-fin’), ‘electric/neon blue’, ‘super neon blue gold’ ‘pearl/perlmutt’ and ‘balloon’.

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Amphilophus citrinellus (GÜNTHER, 1864)

Midas Cichlid

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

Previously included as a member of the genus Cichlasoma, the midas cichlid is often confused with the red devil, A. labiatus. The two can be distinguished through differences in morphology. As suggested by its scientific name, A. labiatus often possesses characteristically large lips, although this is variable and should not be used as a defining indicator of species. More reliable differences include the bigger nuchal hump and more thick-set appearance in A. citrinellus.

The midas exists in many n…

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Sphaerichthys osphromenoides CANESTRINI, 1860

Chocolate Gourami

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

The genus Sphaerichthys currently comprises four species with S. osphromenoides by far the best known in the hobby. It’s easily distinguishable from the congeners S. vaillanti and S. acrostoma since both exhibit a notably more elongate head and body profile, reverse sexual dimorphism (i.e. females are the more colourful/strongly-patterened), and are paternal mouthbrooders.

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Sphaerichthys selatanensis VIERKE, 1979

Crossband Chocolate Gourami

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

This species is only occasionally seen in the hobby and sometimes sold as 'cherry chocolate gourami'. It was originally described as a subspecies of S. osphromenoides since the two are very similar-looking but has been considered a species in its own right since the late 1980s.

The two differ in the number ofrays (7 in S. selatanensis vs. 9-10 in S. osphromenoides),rays (7 vs. 8),…

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Trichogaster chuna (HAMILTON, 1822)

Honey Gourami

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

This species is readily available in the aquarium trade and is a good subject for those new to the hobby given its peaceable nature and relative adaptability in terms of water chemistry. It’s sold under various names including

A number of selectively-bred ornamental strains have also been produced including ‘red’, ‘sunset’, and ‘golden’, for which care is identical to the natural form.

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