Actinopteri (ray-finned fishes) > Cichliformes
(Cichlids, convict blennies) > Cichlidae
(Cichlids) > Pseudocrenilabrinae
Etymology: Hemichromis: Greek, hemis = half + Greek, chromis = a fish, perhaps a perch (Ref. 45335). More on author: Gill.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Freshwater; brackish; benthopelagic; pH range: 6.5 - 7.5; dH range: 4 - 16; potamodromous (Ref. 51243). Tropical; 21°C - 23°C (Ref. 1672); 11°N - 4°N
Africa: widely distributed in West Africa, where it is known from most hydrographic basins (Ref. 53405), associated with forested biotopes (Ref. 5644, 52307). Also reported from coastal basins of Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Nile basin (Ref. 7378), but at least its presence in Cameroon is unconfirmed in Ref. 81260. Ref. 52307 limits this species to Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia. Species boundaries in the genus Hemichromis remain unclear (Ref. 81260).
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 13.6 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 8992); common length : 7.5 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 12193); max. published weight: 10.00 g (Ref. 3799)
(total): 14 - 15;
soft rays: 8 - 9. Diagnosis: 3 black blotches on sides, the first on opercle, the second at midpoint of body, the third on caudal-fin base; upper profile of snout convex or straight (Ref. 53405).
Occurs in mud-bottomed and sand-bottomed canals (Ref. 5723); some distance inland from the coast, associated with areas of intact or recently disturbed forest cover. Considered the true 'jewel fish' of aquarists, this species is also used as an experimental animal by physiologists and ethologists (Ref. 5644). Attains a maximum of 12 cm in captivity. Aquarium keeping: aggressive; in pairs; minimum aquarium size 100 cm (Ref. 51539).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Teugels, G.G. and D.F.E. Thys van den Audenaerde, 1992. Cichlidae. p. 714-779. In C. Levêque, D. Paugy and G.G. Teugels (eds.) Faune des poissons d'eaux douces et saumâtres d'Afrique de l'Ouest. Tome 2. Coll. Faune Tropicale n° 28. Musée Royal de l'Afrique Centrale, Tervuren, Belgique and O.R.S.T.O.M., Paris, 902 p. (Ref. 7378)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 123251)
CITES (Ref. 123416)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: of no interest
Estimates based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5001 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01585 (0.01336 - 0.01880), b=2.96 (2.91 - 3.01), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 3.9 ±0.64 se; based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (Assuming tm<1 and multiple annual spawning; Fec = 713 mean fec).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (19 of 100) .