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Cyclocheilichthys lagleri SONTIRAT, 1985


Cyclocheilichthys: from the Ancient Greek κύκλος (kýklos), meaning ‘circle’, χείλος (cheílos), meaning ‘lip’, and ἰχθύς (ikhthús), meaning ‘fish’, possibly in reference to the continuous lips in this genus.

lagleri: named in honour of Karl F. Lagler (1912-1985), for his “intensive collection of Thai fishes and his work advancing Thai ichthyology”.


Order: Cypriniformes Family: Cyprinidae


Known from the Chao Phraya river system in central Thailand, and the lower Mekong basin in Thailand and Cambodia.

Type locality is ‘Chao Phya River floodwater, vicinity of Ampur Haharaj, Ayuthaya Province, Thailand’.


Observed mostly in low altitude floodplains, and may migrate to inundated areas to spawn during the wet season.

Maximum Standard Length

150 – 200 mm.

Aquarium SizeTop ↑

An aquarium with base measurements of at least 180 ∗ 60 cm will be required for long-term care.


Likely to thrive in many larger set-ups provided the water is scrupulously clean and well-oxygenated, although completely bare arrangements are best-avoided.

Water Conditions

Temperature20 – 26 °C

pH: 6.0 – 8.0

Hardness36 – 268 ppm


Probably preys on small items including insects, insect larvae, crustaceans and the fry of other fish in nature. For it to develop the best condition in the aquarium offer regular meals of small live and frozen foods such as chironomid larvae (bloodworm), Daphnia and Artemia along with good quality dried flakes and granules.

Behaviour and CompatibilityTop ↑

An ideal resident of the larger, well-furnished community set-up though large adults may intimidate slow-moving or particularly timid companions. There are plenty of suitable tankmates, however, including many cyprinids, loaches, cichlids, catfish and characins.

It is a gregarious species by nature and ideally should be kept in a group of at least six. The fish display better colouration in the presence of conspecifics, are less nervous and the display on the whole will appear more natural-looking.

Sexual Dimorphism

Sexually mature females are likely to be thicker-bodied than males.



NotesTop ↑

As with others in the genus little has been written regarding captive care of C. lagleri, but it makes a peaceful and unusual addition to larger aquaria. The best way of obtaining it may be to keep an eye on shipments of wild fishes from Indochina.

It can be distinguished from congeners by possessing 20 circumpeduncular scales and lacking barbels entirely.

Members of Cyclocheilichthys are characterised by possessing a serrated dorsal fin spine, 9 branched pelvic fin rays, a conical snout, small, subterminal mouth and parallel rows of sensory folds on the snout and cheeks. The latter feature is lacking in most other cyprinids but present in a few genera including EirmotusOreichthys, and Neobarynotus.

There have been some nomenclatural issues in recent years, ostensibly because Cyclocheilichthys and the now synonymous Anematichthys were used simultaneously by Bleeker (1859) in reference to the same fish, C. apogon. The issue was addressed by Kottelat (1999) but later misinterpreted by Pasco-Viel, Veran and Variot, 2012, who concluded that Cyclocheilichthys represents a paraphyletic grouping and split the genus into two groups: Cyclocheilichthys (comprising C. enoplos) and Anematichthys (comprising C. apogonC. armatus and C. repasson).

This was corrected by Kottelat (2013), and Cyclocheilichthys currently comprises seven species with the revalidated genus Cyclocheilos including the former members C. enoplos and C. furcatus. C. heteronema differs considerably from other Cyclocheilichthys species and may eventually be separated with the generic name Oxybarbus available for it.

Given the extremely wide range exhibited by C. apogon, and taking into account patterns observed in other Southeast Asian fishes, it seems logical that this species may also turn out to represent a group of closely-related taxa.


  1. Sontirat, S., 1985 - Thai Fisheries Gazette 38(1): 41-49
    Three new species of the freshwater fishes from Thailand.
  2. Kottelat, M., 1999 - Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 47(2): 591-600
    Nomenclature of the genera Barbodes, Cyclocheilichthys, Rasbora and Chonerhinos (Teleostei: Cyprinidae and Tetraodontidae), with comments on the definition of the first reviser.
  3. Kottelat, M., 2013a - Zootaxa 3640(4): 479-482
    The valid generic names for the fish species usually placed in Cyclocheilichthys (Pisces: Cyprinidae).
  4. Kottelat, M., 2013b - Raffles Bulletin of Zoology Supplement 27: 1-663
    The fishes of the inland waters of southeast Asia: a catalogue and core bibiography of the fishes known to occur in freshwaters, mangroves and estuaries.
  5. Pasco-Viel, E., M. Veran and L. Variot , 2012 - Zootaxa 3586: 41-54
    Bleeker was right: Revision of the genus Cyclocheilichthys (Bleeker 1859) and resurrection of the genus Anematichthys (Bleeker 1859), based on morphological and molecular data of Southeast Asian Cyprininae (Teleostei, Cypriniformes).
  6. Pasco-Viel, E., M. Veran and L. Variot , 2013 - Zootaxa 3640(3): 483-484
    Comments on 'The valid generic names for the fish species usually placed in Cyclocheilichthys' (KOTTELAT 2013) and a correction of Pasco-viel et al. (2012).
  7. Rainboth, W. J., 1996 - FAO, Rome: 1-265
    Fishes of the Cambodian Mekong. FAO Species Identification Field Guide for Fishery Purposes.

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