Michi Tobler, 2005
Cichlid Room Companion
Focus Central America

Short synopsis of Herichthys Baird & Girard, 1854

By , 2006. image
Last updated on 03-Mar-2006

Classification: Taxonomy and phylogeny, North America.

Type species: Herichthys cyanoguttatus Baird & Girard, 1854

Distinctive characters: Kullander (1996) gave a revised diagnosis of the genus. Among others, distinguishing characters include:

Distribution: Atlantic versant of Texas (USA) and México, from the Rio Grande/ Bravo-system south to Rio Misantla at the Punta del Morro. H. cyanoguttatus was introduced in the Guadelupe river system in Central Texas and other places in México.

Further information: Stawikowski & Werner (1998) differentiated between Herichthys, which includes the species around H. cyanoguttatus, and the 'Cichlasoma' bartoni-group. According to these authors, the two groups differ in their trophic adaptiations, the body proportions of the adults, the presence of iridescent spots on the scales and in details of the color pattern during breeding. New molecular phylogenetic analyses showed that these two groups together form a monophyletic group (Hulsey et al. 2004). Thus both groups should be included into Herichthys. The data of Hulsey et al. (2004), however, also provide evidence that there are indeed to species groups within Herichthys, which correspond to the differentiation of Stawikowski & Werner (1998).

  • Occurence on the Atlantic slope of North America from the Pánuco basin in México north to the Rio Grande basin in México/ Texas.
  • Bicuspid teeth, variously stout or slender, never differentiated in length in upper and lower jaw. Principal cusp is long.
  • Color pattern of short vertical bars or black spots posteriorly from the middle of the side.
  • Breeding color pattern with dorsal half or entire head and anterior flank turns pale greyish in contrast to the black or dark grey adjacent areas, or entire body turns pale.

Species currently included:

Herichthys bartoni C, H(Valle de Rioverde), A(Overview)

Herichthys carpintis

C, H(Pánuco Mouth), H(Valle de Rioverde), S(H. teporatus), A(Evolution)

Herichthys cyanoguttatus

C, H(Cuatro Cienegas), H(Rio Sabinas), A(Overview), A(Evolution)

Herichthys deppii

C, S(H. geddesi), S(H. montezuma), A(Rediscovery)

Herichthys labridens

C, H(Valle de Rioverde), A(Overview), A(Related species), A(Color variety)

Herichthys minckleyi

C, H(Quattro Cienegas), E(Polychromatism), A(Overview)

Herichthys pantostictus

C, H(Pánuco Mouth)

Herichthys steindachneri

C, H(Valle de Rascon)

Herichthys tamasopoensis

C, H(Valle de Rascon)
C=CRC Catalogue, E=Note on ecology, H=Habitat description, S=Note on systematic status, A=Article

Within the genus Herichthys, there apparently are several undescribed species.

H. cyanoguttatus-group
Herichthys cyanoguttatus Baird & Girard, 1854
Herichthys carpintis (Jordan & Snyder, 1900)
Herichthys deppii (Heckel, 1840)
Herichthys minckleyi (Kornfield & Taylor, 1983)
Herichthys tamasopoensis Artigas Azas, 1993
H. bartoni-group
Herichthys bartoni (Bean, 1892)
Herichthys labridens (Pellegrin, 1903)
Herichthys pantostictus (Taylor & Miller, 1983)
Herichthys steindachneri (Jordan & Snyder, 1900)

Breeding female

Herichthys cyanoguttatus, type species of the genus. The picture shows a breeding female with fry, La Mota spring, Ocampo Valley, Ocampo, Coahuila, México. Photo by Juan Miguel Artigas Azas. Determiner Juan Miguel Artigas Azas.

References (3):


Tobler, Michi. (Mar 03, 2006). "Short synopsis of Herichthys Baird & Girard, 1854". Cichlid Room Companion. Retrieved on Apr 17, 2024, from: