Original description as Metriaclima phaeos:
- Stauffer, Jay Richard Jr. & N.J. Bowers, K.A. Kellogg, K.R. McKaye. 1997. "A revision of the blue-black Pseudotropheus zebra (Teleostei: Cichlidae) complex from Lake Malawi, Africa, with a description of a new genus and ten new species". The Proceedings of the Academy Natural Sciences Philadelphia. 148; pp 189-230 (crc00049)
Conservation: Metriaclima phaeos is evaluated by the international union for the conservation of nature in the iucn red list of threatened species as (VU) vulnerable (2006).