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Mislabeled Cichlids on the Net

Randall

Active Member
5 Year Member
Hello friends,

Sometimes it seems that the more browsing I do on the Internet, the more photos of misidentified western African cichlids I see (although, this is not likely limited to western African cichlids). Even well-known and well-respected web sites are not exempt (apistogramma.com being a notable exception, of course!). In this thread, I'd like to furnish some links to photos of mislabeled fish. Who can correctly identify them? Here's one for starters:

http://www.dcg-online.de/noFrames/files/diaHemichromisLifalili.html

Good luck!

All the best,

Randall Kohn
 

aquaticclarity

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
Looks like a bad photo of Hemichromis stellifer to me. Although the body seems a little to elongated for this species, the rest of the colors/markings are right.

Jeff
 

Mike Wise

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
Randall said:
Hello friends,

Sometimes it seems that the more browsing I do on the Internet, the more photos of misidentified western African cichlids I see (although, this is likely not limited to western African cichlids). Even well-known and well-respected web sites are not exempt (apistogramma.com being a notable exception, of course!).
You're right Randall. In my opinion the internet is the worst place to obtain quality information on many subjects. Some of the sites that I have seen make me cringe with all of the errors - not just ID, but about how to keep and breed some of our fish. Some are better than others, of course, and some use old data and are not updated regularly. Too bad they can't be rated for accuracy somehow.
 

aquaticclarity

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
It looks very similar to a courting male N. sabinae. There is SO much confusion surrounding the genus Nanochromis right now, who knows what the fish will really be called in the end. In almost every case the books/on-line info/etc. just can't keep up with the genus as new fish are being discovered and new and old fish are finally being formally described.

Jeff
 

Randall

Active Member
5 Year Member
Nanochromis sabinae

That's two for Jeff! Yes, the photo of Nanochromis dimidiatus does indeed depict newly described N. sabinae Lamboj, 2005. Jeff, what do you mean by the confusion surrounding Nanochromis? If you have any questions or would like some clarification, please ask away here in the forum. I'm happy to answer your questions.

For the next mislabeled photo, we have another Hemichromis species. When clicking on the link below, three photos come up. The first and third (top and bottom) photos correspond to a valid species, while the middle one may depict an aquarium strain or hybrid. I'm concerned about the first and third photos both of which are labled Hemichromis bimaculatus. What species is depicted?

http://www.aquanovel.com/hemichromis_bimaculatus.htm

Good luck!

Randall Kohn
 

aquaticclarity

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
Top Photo: H. letoureauxi...vertically stretched mid later spot and upper lobe caudal pattern.

Bottom photo: H. cristatus...facial (gill cover/under eye) spotting (as opposed to lines) and again vertically strechted mid lateral spot.


Randall, I guess I'm referring to the number of newly described species of Nanochromis that are finally replacing the trade names along with the lack of photo material. Just showing the same few fish with photos by the same photographer doesn't give much of a base to work from when trying to I.D. wild animals. Taking a snap shot of a given population, literally, just doesn't give a wide enough picture of what the group of fish look like as a whole. My current personal example would be the Nanochromis sp. "Tschuapa" that have recently been imported. They don't fit neatly into the template of any of the described or even trade name Nanochromis. But that's what makes keeping and collecting the live fish fun!

Jeff
 

aquaticclarity

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
Randall,

I also forgot to mention the mislabeled fish photos that add to the difficulty of I.D.ing many Nanochromis. Someone should really start a thread on the subject. Maybe even in the form of a “guessing gameâ€Â.:biggrin:

Jeff
 

Randall

Active Member
5 Year Member
Nanochromis

Hello Jeff,

Although species diversity within the genus Nanochromis is not well understood, currently nine good species are assigned to the genus with more on the way. As per Greenwood (1987), there are two species groups. One group contains the species N. consortus, N. nudiceps, N. parilus, N. splendens, N. transvestitus, and newly described N. wickleri. Morphologically, these species differ from the second species-group, which consists of N. dimidiatus, N. squamiceps, and newly described N. sabinae. Although there are still several undescribed Nanochromis forms, the valid species are well diagnosed. Unfortunately, many trade names have been used to informally designate Nanochromis species over the years, and in the case of N. dimidiatus, several wrong ones. The moniker N. sp. "Tschuapa" is merely the result of someone's ignorance: This fish corresponds to N. sabinae.

The misidentified Hemichromis species above is not H. letorneauxi nor H. cristatus. Hint: the first and third photos depict the same species.

All the best,

Randall Kohn
 

aquaticclarity

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
My first thought was H. stellifer (the striations in the dorsal and caudal), but I didn't go with that since that was also the first photo i.d. you linked. I guess you should always go with your gut!

Jeff
 

Randall

Active Member
5 Year Member
Mislabeled Hemichromis species

Hello Jeff,

Nope, not Hemichromis stellifer either. Hint: Think common jewelfish.

Randall Kohn
 

aquaticclarity

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
That would leave H. guttatus.


The lack of color (or pattern-save the upper lobe) show in the caudal of the top photo is really problematic for me! Maybe it's just do to the angle of the fish and the picture itself.

The bottom photo REALLY looks like H. stellifer. Check out the lower photo on page 117 of Lamboj's book.

Jeff
 

Randall

Active Member
5 Year Member
Hemichromis guttatus

Hello friends,

Yes, Jeff got it! The two photos labeled Hemichromis bimaculatus are indeed H. guttatus. Anton Lamboj may not agree with my reasoning, but in Paul Loiselle's 1979 redescription of H. guttatus, he cited that the lower part (one-third actually) of the midlateral blotch is transversed by the midlateral line. Additionally, Loiselle pointed out that this blotch is oval-shaped and can extend dorsally and ventrally. Here's a little illustration:

..|
..>
< >
--------- - midlateral line
..>
..|

Although my illustration will not win any awards (please ignore the periods), the midlateral blotch on H. guttatus is oval-shaped, can extend both dorsally and ventrally, and is transversed by the midlateral line. Loiselle used these characters, in part, to distinguish the species. So what are the other red jewelfish found within the distributional range of H. guttatus that do not possess the same midlateral blotch configuration? It seems to me that they are undescribed species, described species that were synonymised, or both.

Hemichromis stellifer can be distinguished, in part, by its blue body scale edging. No other species of the genus exhibits this coloration.

For our next misidentification, let's have a look at a Pelvicachromis species. The top photo in the following link is labeled P. humilis. Is it?

http://www.aquariumhobbyist.com/wacichlids/

Good luck!

Randall Kohn
 

aquaticclarity

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
My wife even got this one…Do you really want me to give you the name or should I give some one else a chance first?

Jeff
 

tjudy

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
That page has a LOT of misidentified species. The fish in question are P. rubrolabiatus. There is another male P. rubrolabiatus mislabeled down teh page as a female Teleo. brichardi. I am not sure if the author is clueless or if his sequence of boxes on the table he is using to create that page is just off.
 

Randall

Active Member
5 Year Member
Pelvicachromis rubrolabiatus

That's one for Ted! The top photo labled Pelvicachromis humilis is indeed P. rubrolabiatus Lamboj, 2004.

Now returning to the genus Hemichromis, the following photo, labeled H. bimaculatus, is posted on fishbase.org of all places! If you click on the photo when it comes up, several others come up as well. What is the identity of the fish depicted in the first two photos?

http://fishbase.org/summary/SpeciesSummary.php?id=2389

Good luck!

Randall Kohn
 

tjudy

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
Based on the yellow lines on the cheek I would say a stellifer type.
 

Randall

Active Member
5 Year Member
Hemichromis stellifer

This one goes to Ted! The Hemichromis bimaculatus depicted in the first two fishbase.org photos is indeed H. stellifer. Note the discrete blue edging on the body scales; this coloration distinguishes H. stellifer from congeners.

Our next misidentified cichid photo appears on the sydneycichlid.com gallery. The photo is labeled Pelvicachromis humilis. Is this correct?

http://www.sydneycichlid.com/gallery/wa_cichlids/pelvicachromishumilis1

Good luck!

Randall Kohn
 

tjudy

Moderator
Staff member
5 Year Member
The female in the image is most definitely not... but I will let others play the game. The male in the image is probably the same species as the female, but if it is the same fish that appears in the image before and after the picture of the pair in the gallery, it might be humilis.
 
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