Michi Tobler, 2005
Cichlid Room Companion
Focus Central America

Short synopsis of Petenia Günther, 1862

By , 2005. image
Last updated on 11-Aug-2005

Classification: Taxonomy and phylogeny, North America.

Type species: Petenia splendida Günther, 1862

Distinctive characters: Petenia is a monotypic genus including a highly specialized piscivorous species. Kullander (1996) gave a revised diagnosis of the genus. Among others distinguishing characters include:

  • All teeth caniniform, strongly recurved.
  • Coronalis pore and channel absent.
  • Premaxillary ascending processes reaching to posterior margin orbit (young) or to posterior margin of skull.
  • Dorsal and anal fin naked.

Species currently included:

Petenia splendida C, E(Polychromatism), H(Laguna Noh)
C=CRC Catalogue, E=Note on ecology, H=Habitat description

Distribution: Atlantic slope from Grijalva River to Usumacinta River (México), Usumacinta River (Northern Guatemala), and Belize. Introduced west of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec (e.g. Rio Tonala, Rio Papaloapan system).

Further information: Petenia is known to exhibit a stricking color polymorphism. Beside the normal morph, consipcuous red individuals can be found in natural populations.

From Rio Tonto Petenia splendida from the Rio Tonto, Papaloapan; Veracruz Mexico. Photo by Juan Miguel Artigas Azas. determiner Juan Miguel Artigas Azas


Tobler, Michi. (Aug 11, 2005). "Short synopsis of Petenia Günther, 1862". Cichlid Room Companion. Retrieved on Feb 29, 2024, from: