Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

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Ken Davis
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Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Ken Davis » Thu May 22, 2008 2:57 pm

Got back from the Moskito coast last week, been debating what these guys are with some of the know experts, Rusty and Joe think A. longimanus, Eric a new species, I personally think so also. Attached are two pics are A. longimanus from a tributery of the Rio Sico. Small colorful fish with lots of white spots, biggest we caught were about 4". Next two are male and female of a large gold Amphilophus from a tributery of the Rio Patuca, Bright gold, biggest were 6-7" We actually ate the two fish pictured. Unfortunately a week in the jungle prevented us from successfully bringing any of these back alive. While in the field we suspected we had found A. magaritaferum. Ken
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female Gold Amphilophus
female Gold Amphilophus
male Gold Amphilophus
male Gold Amphilophus
longimanus
longimanus
longimanus
longimanus
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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by michi tobler » Thu May 22, 2008 4:33 pm

Hi Ken, I looked at samples of these fish (from the Patuca drainage) a couple of weeks ago. I think they're A. longimanus, too. Some fish we collected in the upper Patuca earlier this year were very similar in coloration to yours immediately after catch, later during the photo session though they started to develop the iridescent spots on the body and a more prominent banding pattern. Larger individuals indeed look quite high bodied, I'm not sure whether that is the case for smaller sized individuals too.I think if you consider the geographical variation of A. longmanus (especially in coloration!), I doubt that they're actually a different species. My collaborator actually has quite a few whole specimens as well as tissues from these fish as well as A. longimanus from all over Honduras, and we're planning to some work on them along with some other enigmatic Amphilophus as soon as resources allow us to do so.
CHeers, m
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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Bas Pels » Fri May 23, 2008 1:40 am

Having both longimanus and margiritiferium in my tanks, from a aquarists point of vies I'd agree with Michy - the fish does look more like longimanus. Too bad you were not able to breng any back alive, in my tanks the margiritiferium prefers current much more than still water - more or less contrarily to longimanus.

However, they don't grow very big - I never actually measured them, but I'd estimate the biggest to be slightly over 10 cm (4 inches) even though I got them as adults - a year back

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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by michi tobler » Fri May 23, 2008 7:34 am

Bas, could you post some pix of your "margaritiferum"? Is that the fish Peter Buchhauser and friends collected in Honduras?
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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Juan Artigas » Fri May 23, 2008 7:53 am

As it seems, Peter Buchhauser's fish can not be Amphilophus margaritiferum, as it was researched by Eric Hanemman who checked the historic records of Salvin and Godman's trips to Central America, there is no possibility that A. margaritifer comes from Honduras, but from Guatemala near Lake Peten (as stated). It may potentially be that in fact A. margaritifer type is a dominant individual of A. robertsoni.
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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by michi tobler » Fri May 23, 2008 9:13 am

Juan, yes, but that means that the type specimen is coming from the Peten area but it says nothing about its distribution. Anyway, I do agree with you that the Astatheros from Honduras is probably not A. margaritifer. They are confusing fish though. Keying these fish out using the Bussing & Martin clearly brings you to A. margaritifer. But you will also find that although the key brings you to A. margaritifer, a number of traits do not comply with the diagnostic traits provided. The same is true if you look at A. robertsoni and its diagnostic traits. We currently treat these Astatheros all as A. robertsoni (and presume that the A. margaritifer types are a odd looking A. robertsoni, whether a dominant individual or an ecotype from specific habitats or ... dunno). There is certainly some work to be done on these beasts...
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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Ken Davis » Fri May 23, 2008 9:40 am

How about these two fish, a mated pair we caught last year in the Rio Tabasco a tributery of the Rio Limon in north eastern Honduras, This fish Rusty does think is A. magaritaferum. I had the pair, but the male wacked the female, I plan to show him as A. magaritareum at the ACA this July. We went back to the same place this year and found none as the water was very low. Ken
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female
female
DSC_0367.jpg (59 KiB) Viewed 6812 times
female
female
DSC_0364.jpg (56.42 KiB) Viewed 6795 times
male
male
DSC_0362.jpg (67.77 KiB) Viewed 6786 times
male
male
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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by michi tobler » Fri May 23, 2008 9:51 am

That is exactly the fish I was talking about in the previous post.

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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Bas Pels » Fri May 23, 2008 10:35 am

michi tobler wrote:Bas, could you post some pix of your "margaritiferum"? Is that the fish Peter Buchhauser and friends collected in Honduras?
Cheers, m
in fact, they are F1 of these fishes

normal colored:
margiritiferium.jpg
depositing eggs
margaritiferiumbroedt[1].jpg

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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Bas Pels » Fri May 23, 2008 10:37 am

I hope this works, I posted 2 movies on youtube:

spawning: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CZP_R2Fny5g

guarding their fry: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=93xL5kFsuXU

I do have some fry at 1,4 cm, but not pics yet

looking at the dress when breeding, they do resemble robertsoni more than longimanus, in my eyes

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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Juan Artigas » Fri May 23, 2008 10:43 am

michi tobler wrote:Juan, yes, but that means that the type specimen is coming from the Peten area but it says nothing about its distribution
Correct, strictly it is true, I think I took as granted the reasoning that if A. margaritiferum were distributed from Peten to Honduras, crossing varios river drainages in the way, it would be a well known fish, instead of the mystery it is. And its relationship with A. robertsoni would be a matter of study.

Knowing the variation many species show inside a population, in populations found in different habitats, and when distributed in a large geographic areas, I see as reasonable to assume that the fish show by Ken may well be a form of A. robertsoni, instead of someting else.
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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by michi tobler » Fri May 23, 2008 10:54 am

Juan Artigas wrote: Knowing the variation many species show inside a population, in populations found in different habitats, and when distributed in a large geographic areas, I see as reasonable to assume that the fish show by Ken may well be a form of A. robertsoni, instead of someting else.
Yes, and I think the situation for robersoni/ margaritifer may be similar perhaps...

Just cool fish!

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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Juan Artigas » Fri May 23, 2008 11:00 am

michi tobler wrote:Yes, and I think the situation for robersoni/ margaritifer may be similar perhaps
I totally agree
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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by michi tobler » Fri May 23, 2008 3:08 pm

Hi all,

here a random assortment of Astatheros from the last trip:

Note the variation within species. Particularly interesting is the variation of blue iridescent spots on body and fins. These dots turn black in formalin and are absent (according to Bussing & Martin) in A. margaritifer. Obviously, there is variation within populations as well as among sexes. Also some fish have sligthly emarginated caudal fin (A. margaritifer), others a truncate or slightly rounded one (robertsoni). Note also that most fish have a prominent lateral blotch (not like margaritifer). So far, just impressions... nothing measured or counted yet...


A. robertsoni from Lancetilla (these are pretty much the fish that are in the European hobby)
rob_lancetilla1.jpg
rob_lancetilla2.jpg
rob_lancetilla3.jpg
A. robertsoni from Laguna El Cacao (this one is from a Mangrove forest, note the similarities in body shape to the Lancetilla fish but the differences in coloration (brown-red compared to yellow-green)
rob_cacao2.jpg
A. robertsoni from the Rio Chupa (Aguan drainage) (note the differences in body shape and coloration (prominent lines of coppery dots) compared to previous fish, blue spots in dorsal fin absent)
rob_cacao.jpg
A. robertsoni from the Rio Agalteca (Aguan drainage) (very similar to the Chupa fish, blue dots in dorsal fin present (at least in male))
rob_aguan1.jpg
rob_aguan2.jpg
For comparison: A. robertsoni from the Grijalva drainage in Mexico
a_robertsoni.jpg
a_robertsoni.jpg (36.34 KiB) Viewed 5575 times
A. longimanus from the Aguan drainage (just for comparison to Ken's fish)
longiaguan.jpg
A. longimanus from the Patuca drainage (from the same drainage as Ken's fish but far upstream)
longi_patuca.jpg
Cheers, m
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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by chc » Tue May 27, 2008 8:49 am

This is officially my favorite thread in a long time! :lol:

Great pictures everyone. Ken Davis, did you ever get any fry from your pair, or did the male "off" the female too quickly?

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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Ken Davis » Tue May 27, 2008 4:40 pm

No fry, that's why were stop there this year, I was hopeing for a female, but with the bad luck we had keeping the moskito fish alive it would have died even if I had caught one, I'll go back next year and stay all day until I find more. Ken
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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Tom Williams » Tue Jun 03, 2008 3:54 am

Fascinating thread, thanks to everyone who has posted. I keep some of these species in my aquaria at home and it is great to learn more about them.

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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Bas Pels » Tue Jun 03, 2008 3:57 am

I got:
1 variety of longimanus
2 of robertsoni
1 'margiritiferium'

looking at the above, I'd like to expand this a bit. So many different varieties excist :shock:

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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Bernard GBX » Wed Jun 04, 2008 12:48 am

Hello,
I have too the "A." cf robertsoni from Honduras (Quebrada de Barracon - German collector) and I really think it must be describe as a new species.
For the "longimanus", I have some from Honduras an the bigger are more yellow than the other. I think it's a river variety from the "popenoi".
There's a small article in the last french America group link http://bernard.cichlid.free.fr/groupe-a ... ero36.html and an other will arrive this month about the margaritiferum (the real one).

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Re: Amphilophus species from eastern Honduras

Post by Davel » Sat Aug 30, 2008 2:37 am

Do you have the new article yet?

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