Vieja maculicauda (Regan, 1905)
Blackbelt cichlid
Vieja maculicauda
photo by DATZ

Family:  Cichlidae (Cichlids), subfamily: Cichlasomatinae
Max. size:  25 cm SL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  benthopelagic; freshwater; brackish; depth range - 10 m, potamodromous
Distribution:  Central America: Atlantic slope, from the Usumacinta River drainage in Guatemala to the Chagres River in Panama.
Biology:  Inhabits lakes and rivers but migrates to the extreme lower sections of the lower river valleys where current is slow. Prefers muddy and sandy bottoms and lives among submerged trees and logs for protection. Thrives well in shady bank areas of rivers. Able to tolerate brackish and marine conditions. Feeds on benthic detritus consisting of vegetable matter, both aquatic and terrestrial plants, seeds and fruits.
IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC); Date assessed: 27 August 2018 Ref. (126983)
Threat to humans:  harmless

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