Sydney Cichlid Aquarium Pages



Hemichromis guttatus

Distinguishing Features: Dr. Paul Loiselle, in his book “The Cichlid Aquarium”, states that he believes Hemichromis guttatus to be the original jewel cichlid of the aquarium hobby and judging by the colouration and body shape of the so-called “H. bimaculatus” in Australia, it appears that he is probably correct. Pictures of Hemichromis guttatus in his text and others show a fish that appears very much like like the common jewel cichlid available in Sydney. The species when mature only has the spot in the centre of the flank, along with the spot on the operculum as the spot on the caudal peduncle fades with maturity. H. guttatus is reportedly “higher” in the body than other Hemichromines. I believe H. guttatus, is commonly available in Australia, however it is almost always misidentified as Hemichromis bimaculatus.

Origin: Ivory Coast, Ghana, Cameroon and NigeriaCommon name: Common Jewel
Maximum size: 11cm

All Hemichromine species are monogamous pair formers that will spawn on a flattened stone or leaf, although some will also utilise caves if these are offered. In most species both parents play a role in fry raising, although most duties associated with young are undertaken by the female. The majority of Hemichromines are undemanding with regard to water chemistry but prefer pHs between 6.0-7.0. They do not do as well in higher pHs and therefore should not be kept with cichlids of the rift lakes. Sexing most species is difficult, although the female grows to a slightly smaller size in some species.

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