South American Eartheaters
Cichlid Room Companion

South American Eartheaters

First hand experience on South American eartheaters
Author: Weidner, Thomas, 2000

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Full color 335 pp., 18.20 mb PDF file

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First hand experience on South American eartheaters.


The book you are reading is a monograph intended to provide an overview of the eartheaters of the South American continent. It covers the members of the genera Geophagus, Satanoperca, Biotodoma, and Gymnogeophagus, which are grouped together in the Tribe Geophaginii. Geophagine cichlids all possess a lobe-like appendage on the gill framework, a feature which is also found in the genera Apistogramma, Apistogrammoides, and Mikrogeophagus; these three genera are, however, classed as dwarf cichlids on account of their small size, and hence are not dealt with further here. On the other hand the acarichthyine cichlids (Tribe Acarichthyini), Acarichthys and Guianacara, are included, as for a long time they were regarded as eartheaters, even though they lack the gill appendage. In addition the genus Retroculus is considered, as it was for a long time included in the Tribe Geophaginii


Forword and Acknowledgments, 6
Introduction, 7
Eartheaters in history, 8
The natural habitat, 20
The aquarium, 30
Proper maintenance, 43
Breeding behaviour, 55
The genera, 67
The species, 71
Biotodoma Eigenmann & Kennedy, 1903, 73
Geophagus Heckel, 1840, 86
‘Geophagus‘ crassilabris Complex, 171
‘Geophagus‘ brasiliensis Complex, 191
Satanoperca Günther, 1862, 206
Gymnogeophagus de Miranda-Ribeiro, 1918, 248
Retroculus Eigenmann & Bray, 1894, 281
Acarichthys Eigenmann, 1912, 297
Guianacara Kullander & Nijssen, 1989, 303
Glossary, 326
References, 328
Index, 334


The South American eartheaters are amongst the most adaptable species of the South American continent and are, by and large, easy to maintain. They are attractively coloured, long-lived, relatively easy to feed, and with luck can be induced to breed in almost any type of water. They are devoted parents with a fascinating behavioural repertoire that will never cease to amaze their owner.

The author has more than 10 years experience in keeping South American eartheaters and undertook several expeditions to South America in order to observe and catch these cichlids in their natural habitat. The information provided in this book stems from first hand experience and the author’s knowledge regarding keeping and breeding these eartheaters forms the basis of this monograph, the first book completely devoted to South American eartheaters.

In this book you will find general information on the history, systematics, geographical origin, and maintenance requirements of these cichlids. In the species section the different taxa are described in detail. The book covers the members of the genera Geophagus, Satanoperca, Biotodoma, and Gymnogeophagus, and also Acarichthys, Guianacara and Retroculus.


Full color 335 pp., 18.20 mb PDF file.