Eyetail cichlids

(Cichla spp.)


Eyetail cichlids IUCN NOT EVALUATED (NE)


Facts about this animal

Cichla is a poorly known genus of South American predating cichlids. It comprises at least 15 species, but there may be as many as 30.

Cichlas are amongst the largest cichlids, most species growing to over 50 cm and attaining a weight of 3-4 kg. They reach sexual maturity when about 20 cm long. They are territorial. The female lays up to 10'000 eggs. Both parents care for their offspring for about one month.

Did you know?
that cichlas are bred in artificial ponds for meat production?


Name (Scientific) Cichla spp.
Name (English) Eyetail cichlids
Name (French) Cichla
Name (German) Kammbarsch
Name (Spanish) Pavón, Tucunaré
Local names Portugués: Tucunaré paca (hembra), tucunaré açu (macho)
CITES Status Not listed
CMS Status Not listed



Photo Copyright by
Ron DeCloux



Range Northern South America, including Venezuela, the Guyanas, Brasil, Peru and Bolivia,where they are found in all major water bodies.
Habitat Different types of freshwater or brackwater habitats, depending of species.
Wild population Unknown
Zoo population Cichla monoculus, Cichla ocellaris and Cichla temensis have been reported to ISIS, in total less than 100 specimens (2007).

In the Zoo

Eyetail cichlids


How this animal should be transported

For air transport, Container Note 51 of the IATA Live Animals Regulations should be followed.

Fish must be unpacked carefully and under low illumination.


Find this animal on ZooLex


Photo Copyright by
Ron DeCloux

Why do zoos keep this animal

Cichlas are not threatened, they are even aquaculture species. Zoos and aquariums keep them primarily for educational reasons, because they are among the largest members of the cichlid family and because of their interesting reproductive behaviour which includes nest building by both male and female, defending the nesting territory and caring for the offspring.