Oreochromis rukwaensis (Hilgendorf & Pappenheim, 1903)

Lake Rukwa tilapia
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Image of Oreochromis rukwaensis (Lake Rukwa tilapia)
Oreochromis rukwaensis
Male picture by Turner, G.F.

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: Oreochromis: Latin, aurum = gold + Greek, chromis = a fish, perhaps a perch (Ref. 45335).

Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range Ecology

Freshwater; benthopelagic.   Tropical; 7°S - 9°S

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Point map | Introductions | Faunafri

Africa: Lake Rukwa (Ref. 2, 118630) and upper Great Ruaha River in Tanzania (Ref. 118630).

Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 33.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 4967)

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Dorsal spines (total): 15 - 17; Dorsal soft rays (total): 11-13; Anal spines: 3; Anal soft rays: 10 - 11; Vertebrae: 30. Diagnosis: Typical tilapiine cichlid, relatively deep bodied, with rather a small head (Ref. 118638). Other distinguishing characters are: caudal fin free of scales except basally; vertebrae 30; scales in lateral line series 30-32; dorsal spines XV-XVII; soft rays usually 11-13; outer teeth bicuspid, in mature fishes occasionally with a few tricuspids; lower gill-rakers 20-22; interorbital region in adults 34.5-40.0% length of head (Ref. 2). Ripe males have a dark body and fins, almost black, with bright red/orange margins on the dorsal and caudal fins; vertical barring can be noticeable in freshly caught specimens; head region in ripe males has a bluish sheen; ripe males have yellow-orange tassels; females and subadult males plain silver/grey with 6-7 post-opercular vertical stripes and bluish snout present in freshly caught specimens (Ref. 118638).

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

This species is found both in large lakes and small rivers (Ref. 4967, 118638). A maternal mouthbrooder (Ref. 118638). Males construct territories in shallow water; where there was ample space they were similar in structure and grouping to those of Oreochromis variabilis, each territory consisting of a central raised mating platform in the middle of a large circular depression (Ref. 2). It is a major component of the fisheries catch in Lake Rukwa and the Mtera Dam (Ref. 118638). Strong aquaculture potential given broad habitat requirements (Ref. 118638). IUCN conservation status is stated as vulnerable D2, declining population trend (Ref. 118638).

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae

A maternal mouthbrooder (Ref. 118638). Males construct territories in shallow water; where there was ample space they were similar in structure and grouping to those of Oreochromis variabilis, each territory consisting of a central raised mating platform in the middle of a large circular depression; males occupy these territories at sunrise, when water temperature was 12°C and they left for deeper water in the late afternoon when the temperature rose to 25°C (Ref. 2). It exhibits pseudo-spawning and then true spawning follows (Ref. 2).

Main reference Upload your references | References | Coordinator : Kullander, Sven O. | Collaborators

Trewavas, E., 1983. Tilapiine fishes of the genera Sarotherodon, Oreochromis and Danakilia. British Mus. Nat. Hist., London, UK. 583 p. (Ref. 2)

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 119314)

  Vulnerable (VU) (D2); Date assessed: 31 January 2006

CITES (Ref. 115941)

Not Evaluated

CMS (Ref. 116361)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans

  Harmless





Human uses

Fisheries: commercial
FAO(Publication : search) | FishSource |

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Internet sources

Aquatic Commons | BHL | Cloffa | Websites from users | Check FishWatcher | CISTI | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | DiscoverLife | ECOTOX | Faunafri | Fishtrace | GenBank(genome, nucleotide) | GloBI | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | IGFA World Record | MitoFish | Otolith Atlas of Taiwan Fishes | PubMed | Reef Life Survey | SeaLifeBase | Tree of Life | Wikipedia(Go, Search) | World Records Freshwater Fishing | Zoological Record

Estimates of some properties based on models

Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805):  PD50 = 0.5000   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01622 (0.00704 - 0.03738), b=3.02 (2.82 - 3.22), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)family-body shape (Ref. 93245).
Resilience (Ref. 69278):  Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  Moderate vulnerability (39 of 100) .
Price category (Ref. 80766):   Unknown.