Sunday,26 September 2021, 7 : 29 AM

Andinoacara pulcher

A pulcher
Andinoacara pulcher
Image Credit: wikipedia


Andinoacara pulcher is a medium sized fish its genus, it has a TL(Total length) of 6.5 ".
It is distributed in Central and South America: Trinidad and Venezuela.


(Click for details of Cichlid taxonomy)

Andinoacara pulcher was first described by Gill in 1858 as Cychlasoma pulchrum.
It was afterwards placed in genus Aequidens, however 1n 2009 a new genus Andinoacara was described based on Molecular data.
Andinoacara genus is further spilt upto into two clades, Andinoacara pulcher group and Andinoacara rivlatus group.
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".
A, pulcher is a very beautiful fish and the species name "pulcher" means beautiful in latin.


Shape :-

Body shape of A. pulcher is streamlined compared to fish of A rivulatus group.
The body depth is 42% compared to average 47% of A rivulatus group.
The body is highest at the fifth and sixth dorsal spinous rays.
When viewed from the front the facial outline from dorsal to mouth is moderately curved.
The head is considerably less than a quarter of the entire length.
Mouth is terminal.
There are eleven rows of scales obliquely cross the body at its greatest height.
The lateral line is interrupted as in all cichlids, the upper lateral runs through a row of 15 scales, while the lower lateral line is composed of 10 scales.
Dorsal fin is placed at distant three-tenths of the entire length of body from the snout.
There are 13 spines in dorsal fin and 11 soft rays.
Anal fin commencing under the first soft ray of the dorsal.
Anal fin has 3 spines which is a characteristic feature of this genus, there are 7 soft rays.
Pectoral fins occur in pair, they are asymmetric, with rounded dorsal tip.
Pelvic fin is pointed and has 12 spines.

Distribution & Habitat

Andinoacara pulcher is widely distributed in Central and South America: Trinidad and Venezuela


In its native habitat A. pulcher feeds on small insects and other carnivorous material.
In aquarium it should be given predominately carnivorous diet.


The general color of the body and head is olive green.
A number of lines of sky-blue color, some of the lower of which are interrupted, obliquely cross the cheeks and preoperculum in a posteriorly ascending direction.
There are distant and scattered spots on the operculum.
The body is crossed by about eight obscure bands. There are as many interrupted longitudinal stripes as there are rows of scales run along the sides, each stripe being formed by bars running through the middle of each scale which are abruptly discontinued a short distance from the posterior margins.
There is a distinct, subrotund black spot on each side, it is placed on the fourth and fifth rows of scales in an oblique line from the base of the dorsal fin between its eighth and eleventh spines:
Dots similar to those on the operculum are also more or less thickly distributed over the body.
There is a distinct infra-orbital black spot.

Tank Size and setup:

A. pulcher are medium sized fish and should be kept in a aquarium of about 300 liters with good filtration.

Tank Mates:

A. pulcher is a eaceful for a cichlid of this size, and can be combined with other species that are too large to swallow. Good tankmates include medium-sized characins, catfishes such as Corydoras spp.
Loricariids and, in a big enough tank, other relatively peaceful cichlids.


Andinoacara pulcher is a monogamous substrate spawner and that both sexes share in all the duties of brood care. Mature males develop slightly pointed dorsal and anal fins, and females generally have a more rounded appearance than males.
The female, however, is usually the more active partner as long as the pair cares for eggs or larvae, while the male defends the spawning territory against intruders.
Like most other open brooders these cichlids deposit their eggs on a horizontal surface.
At 27 °C hatching occurs about two days post spawning, and the fry attempt swimming seven days thereafter.
The male and female fish practice long-term bi parental defense of their mobile fry.

Species Snapshot

Species Card

Particulars Details
Scientific Name Andinoacara pulcher
Common Name Blue Acara
Genus Andinoacara
Subfamily Cichlasomatinae
Geographical Origin Central and South America: Trinidad and Venezuela.
Diet Carnivore
Gender Differences Dimorphic
Breeding Substrate Spawner
Temperament Mildly aggressive
Con Specific Temperament Mildly aggressive
Water hardness Medium to hard upto 25 dh
Difficulty Level in Aquariums 2

Morphometric Data

Particulars Details
Total Length(inches) 6.50
Standard Length(inches) 5.00

Measurements as % of Total Length

Particulars Details
Body Depth 42.00 %
Head length 36.30 %
Pre Dorsal length 41.00 %
Pre Pectoral length 34.80 %
Pre Anal length 75.00 %
Pre Pelvic length 41.00 %
Caudal Peduncle Depth  %
Caudal Peduncle Length  %
Fork length 100.00 %
Length of Last Dorsal Fin Spine  %
Pectoral Fin Length  %
Pelvic Fin Length  %

Measurements as % of Head Length

Particulars Details
Head Width  %
Snout length  %
Eye diameter 23.30 %
Pre Orbital Length 24.70 %
Inter Orbital Width  %
Pre Orbital Depth 24.70 %

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