Sunday,26 September 2021, 5 : 43 AM

Cichlid Sub Family:Etroplinae

Etroplus canarensis
Image Credit: Beta M


Etroplinae is a subfamily in the cichlid family of fishes.
The subfamily includes two genera:

  • Etroplus : Etroplus are the only cichlids which are native to India and Sri Lanka, Asia .
  • Paretroplus : Cichlids belonging to genus Paretroplus are native to Madagascar, Africa.

A remarkable features of this family, is the development of the front part of the gas bladder and corresponding changes to the posterior of the neurocranium(back part of the skull and houses the brain).
This creates a direct connection between the gas bladder and inner ear .
This feature is not seen in any other Cichlid families.
This allows fish of this genus to have remarkable hearing power.

Genus Etroplus

Etroplus is a small genus of cichlids which are native to India and Sri Lanka.
These are the only cichlids which are native in these countries.
They inhabit freshwater as well as brackish water.
The genus name is derived from the words 'etron' meaning belly and 'oplon' for arms.
This refers to the spines that are present on the anal fin, i.e the long spinous anal-fin

There are 3 recognized species in this Genus.

Genus Paretroplus

Paretroplus is a genus of cichlids which are endemic to lakes and rivers of Madagascar.
Most fish in this genus are threatened and mostly restricted to northwestern parts of island.
These cichlids are mostly restricted to freshwater but at least two species are found in brackish water also.
They are closely related to Asian cichlids belonging to genus Etroplus.
The genus name is derived from two words 'para' and 'etroplus', and the name 'paretroplus' literally means 'next to etroplus'.

At present 13 species are recognized in this genus.