Classification / Names
Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa
Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes
(Perch-likes) > Cichlidae
(Cichlids) > Cichlasomatinae
Etymology: Heros: Greek, heros = hero (Ref. 45335); liberifer: Derived from the Latin words liberi (= children) and ferre (= to carry) in reference to the oral incubation, a reproductive behaviour, which is apparently unique in the genus. A noun in apposition.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Freshwater; benthopelagic; pH range: 4.1 - 6.1. Tropical; 27°C - ?
South America: Rio Orinoco basin.
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 16.4 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 114589)
Morphology | Morphometrics
(total): 15 - 16;
soft rays: 10 - 11;
Vertebrae: 17. Heros liberifer can be diagnosed from all its congeners by having the following characters: a pattern of several horizontal series of bright red dots on the lower half of the body sides (vs. absence of rows of red dots); distinct caudal spot in adult specimens (vs. caudal spot usually merged with bar 2 in adult specimens); and tiny dark dots on operculum and cheeks in adult males (vs. large dots or a vermicular pattern). It differs from adult specimens of the frequently syntopic Heros severus by narrow (vs. thick) lips, bar 4, which is not shortened, but extends from the anal fi n base onto the base of the dorsal fin (vs. bar 4 extending only slightly above the lower lateral line), by the first two anterior hemal spines, which are broader and partially connected (vs. the first three hemal spines connected), and a bright red (vs. brown to dark reddish) iris in live specimens (Ref. 114589).
This species is adapted to lentic environment with flooded forest habitats as the typical biotopes. It has no narrow habitat requirement as it is observed not only in clearwater and extreme blackwater habitats, but also in whitewater habitats. It can thrive in a wide range of physico-chemical environmental conditions (pH 4.1-6.1; conductivity 4-15 ?S/cm). It spawns in the flooded riparian forest during the flood season. At the start of the dry season, it leaves the riparian forests, which mostly dry up, and spends the low-water season among submerged logs, trunks and branches. During the low-water season, it usually seeks shelter in the crevices and gaps found between the boulders (Ref. 114589).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Deposits eggs on vertical or sometimes on a horizontal surface. Hatching takes place approximately forty hours after spawning at 27° C water temperature. Both parents pick up the larvae to brood them orally (Ref. 114589).
Staeck, W. and I. Schindler, 2015. Description of a new Heros species (Teleostei, Cichlidae) from the Rio Orinoco drainage and notes on Heros severus Heckel, 1840. Bull. Fish Biol. 15(1/2):121-136. (Ref. 114589)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 119314)
CITES (Ref. 115941)
Threat to humans
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningSpawning aggregationFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5312 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.03162 (0.01435 - 0.06966), b=3.00 (2.82 - 3.18), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)family-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 2.8 ±0.4 se; Based on size and trophs of closest relatives
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (23 of 100) .