Sunday,26 September 2021, 5 : 35 AM

Andinoacara :Cichlid Genus

Andinoacara stalsbergi
Image Credit: Alf Stalsberg


Andinoacara is a South American genus of fish in the family Cichlidae.


The genus Andinoacara was described by the Czech scientists MUSILOVÁ, RÍCAN & NOVÁK in 2009.
Before this the members of Andinoacara were placed in the "catch-all" genus Aequidens although they are not closely related to the other members of this genus.

The genus name Andinoacara is formed by two words "Andino" and "Acara".
Andino refers to Andes Mountain Chain in South America.
These cichlids are found on the slopes of Andes mountains and in the valley formed by three arms of Northern Andes.
The term "Acara" has been used historically for Cichlids.
So the term Andinoacara literally means "Cichlids from Mountain Andes".


Species of Andinoacara are characterized by blue or green iridescent stripes on the side of the head and usually a slanting horizontal dark band along the side somewhat dorsally(upper side).
There is a dark blotch at the base of the caudal fin situated at the middle of the base,It is relatively small and only indistinctly ocellated if at all.
This sets them apart from genus Aequidens in which blue lines on the side of the head are rare, the lateral band is usually horizontal.
The caudal fin blotch is distinctly ocellated and situated on the dorsal half.

The colour pattern of Andinoacara is thus more similar to that of colour pattern in the genera Bujurquina and Tahuantinsuyoa (Kullander, 1986), with which they also share a uniserial predorsal scale pattern.

Distribution & Habitat

The genus Andinoacara is restricted to freshwater habitats in Northwestern South America, Trinidad and the Orinoco Basin west to the Pacific coast of South America.
In south it extends to as far as Peru,Southern Central America, Costa Rica and Panama.
There are no members of the genus in the Amazon Basin.


The species in this genus are grouped in two Distinct groups called,