Classification / Names
Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa
Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes
(Perch-likes) > Cichlidae
(Cichlids) > Pseudocrenilabrinae
Etymology: lucanusi: Enigma from enigmatic, refers to the somewhat intermediate characters between Pelvicachromis and Parananochromis in possessing pigmentation similarities to the first, but anatomical similarities to the second genus; and chromis.
Environment / Climate / Range
Freshwater; benthopelagic; pH range: 5.8 - ?. Tropical; 24°C - ? (Ref. 81928); 11°N - 10°N, 13°W - 14°W
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 4.5 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 81928)
Morphology | Morphometrics
The new genus is distinguished from all other chromidotilapiine genera by a unique combination of characters. It possesses twelve scales around the caudal peduncle vs. (13 or 14 scales) in Limbochromis Greenwood 1987, (14-16 scales) in Chromidotilapia, Boulenger 1898, and (16 scales) in Benitochromis Lamboj 2001, Pelvicachromis Thys van den Audenaerde 1968 and Thysochromis Daget 1988. Among the remaining chromidotilapiine genera with twelve circumpeduncular scales this new genus is further distinguished from Congochromis Stiassny & Schliewen 2007 and Nanochromis Pellegrin 1904 by: an infraorbital series containing a lachrymal and three additional tubular bones, and a gap between the 2nd and 3rd tubular infraorbitals (vs. lachrymal and one tubular bone), plus the lateral line is clearly separated from the dorsal-fin base (vs. posterior part contiguous with the dorsal-fin base). It is distinguished from Divandu Lamboj & Snoeks 2000 by: an infraorbital series with a lachrymal and three additional tubular bones and a gap between the 2nd and 3rd tubular infraorbitals (vs. four tubular bones), only four openings of the
laterosensory system in the lachrymal bone (vs. five), the first ray of pelvic fin in adult females is of equal length or longer than second ray of this fin (vs. first ray always longer), being a pair-bonding cave breeder (vs. a mouthbrooder), and by well developed sexual dichromatism (vs. weakly developed). Finally it is distinguished from Parananochromis Greenwood 1987 by: an infraorbital series with a lachrymal and three additional tubular bones with a gap between the 2nd and 3rd tubular infraorbitals (vs. four tubular bones in some species of Parananochromis), juveniles with 3 or 4 rows of irregular dark brown to black dots on body (vs. maximum of 2 rows), and the first ray of pelvic fin in adult females of equal length or longer than the second ray of this fin (vs. second ray slightly longer or of equal length) (Ref. 81928).
Africa: Guinea. Only known from type locality, the Foto River, what is a small savannah river near the bauxite mining town of Fria in coastal Guinea, north of Conakry (Ref. 81928).
Where it was collected, Enigmatochromis lucanusi occured syntopically with Pelvicachromis humilis (Ref. 81928).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
In aquaria, the species is a monogamous, pair bonding, cave spawner. Eggs are guarded by both sexes, but more intensively by the female. Hatching occurs after three days post-spawn.
Larvae are normally deposited on the bottom of the cave, rarely in other caves nearby the original cave. Juveniles are free swimming 8 or 9 days post-hatching, and are guarded by both parents for about 5 to 6 weeks. Breeding and guarding individuals of both sexes regularly exhibit more aggressive and intensive coloration. The dark, longitudinal stripe that is typical for breeding and guarding specimens of both sexes in
many other cave breeders of the chromidotilapiine lineage (e.g., Pelvicachromis, Congochromis, and Parananochromis) is prominently visible in males, but is more rarely and weakly visible in females. In this
character, females of Enigmatochromis differ from females of Pelvicachromis, Congochromis and Parananochromis, where a prominent dark, longitudinal stripe is typical for females (and only rarely for males) during the first 2 to 4 weeks when guarding fry (Ref. 81928).
Lamboj, A., 2009. A new dwarf cichlid genus and species (Teleostei, Cichlidae) from Guinea, West Africa. Zootaxa 2173:41-48. (Ref. 81928)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 96402)
CITES (Ref. 94142)
Threat to humans
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 1.0000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01000 (0.00244 - 0.04107), b=3.04 (2.81 - 3.27), based on all LWR estimates in FishBase (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 3.2 ±0.4 se; Based on size and trophs of closest relatives
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months ().
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (10 of 100) .