Type species: Cunningtonia longiventralis Boulenger, 1906
- Body deep, 2.6 - 3 times as long as high, with a convex dorsal profile.
- Dorsal XII-XIV, 13-15. Anal III, 8-10. Ventral fins prolonged with outer rays reaching to the caudal fin in adult males. Caudal fin cresentric, with more or less filamentous lobes.
- Scales small with 35-41 scales along the longitudinal line.
- Two lateral lines.
- Lower pharyngeal bone triangular, covered densely with small cuspid teeth.
- Mouth final, broad and transverse, with fine tricuspid teeth, arranged in many rows forming a broad band on each jaw.
- The color of the body is silvery to bluish in males, and silver with dark blotches in females.
- Total length 14 cm.
Species currently included:
Cunningtonia longiventralis Boulenger, 1906
Link to Cunningtonia longiventralis in the CRC Catalogue.
Remarks on taxonomic status:
The molecular analyses of Koblmüller et al. (2004) showed that the mono-typic genus Cunningtonia form a subclade within the Ophthalmotilapia-clade, together with the genera Aulonocranus, Ectodus and Lestradea, and that Cunningtonia longiventralis may form a species-pair together with Aulonocranus dewindti. Cunningtonia differ primarily from the species in the genus Ophthalmotilapia by the presence of fine tricuspid teeth, tightly set in many rows forming a broad band on each jaw, like seen in species of the genus Petrochromis.