Actinopteri (ray-finned fishes) > Cichliformes
(Cichlids, convict blennies) > Cichlidae
(Cichlids) > Pseudocrenilabrinae
Etymology: Oreochromis: Latin, aurum = gold + Greek, chromis = a fish, perhaps a perch (Ref. 45335). More on author: Trewavas.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Freshwater; brackish; benthopelagic; non-migratory. Tropical; 7°S - 12°S
Africa: Lake Mweru and the swamps and saline lakes in Mweru-wa-Ntipa (Ref. 2), the lower (Ref. 2, 95585) and middle (Ref. 95585) Luapula River system and the Lufira River (upper Congo River basin) in Democratic Republic of the Congo and Zambia (Ref. 2). Introduced in Lake Kivu in Rwanda (Ref. 46152).
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?, range 18 - 22.5 cm
Max length : 23.8 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 2)
Morphology | Morphometrics
(total): 15 - 17;
soft rays: 9 - 12;
Vertebrae: 30 - 32. Diagnosis: scales on cheek in 2-3 rows; caudal scales variable, not on the inter-radial membranes except at the base; never stiffening the fin; genital papilla large and tuberculate or scalloped, tasseled in breeding males; generally lighter or darker olive-green; breeding male iridescent dark green to blue-black on head, body and vertical fins; red edge to dorsal and caudal fins (Ref. 2).
Young Oreochromis mweruensis feed on epiphytic filamentous algae in swampy areas (Ref. 2), but also accept small invertebrates and zooplankton, a tendency they lose with age (Ref. 52307). Adults feed on filamentous algae and detritus (Ref. 52307) and bottom deposits, but those that migrated to the deeper northern end feed almost exclusively on plankton (Ref. 2).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Spawns along the banks of lakes/rivers at an average depth of 12 to 13 m. Mating territory largely occupied by a low mound with 6-12 grooves or crests radiating from the small central concave area (star-shaped nest). Males build the star-shaped nests on a sandy substrates.
Trewavas, E., 1983. Tilapiine fishes of the genera Sarotherodon, Oreochromis and Danakilia. British Mus. Nat. Hist., London, UK. 583 p. (Ref. 2)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 123251)
CITES (Ref. 123416)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: ; aquaculture: experimental
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01738 (0.00747 - 0.04041), b=3.03 (2.84 - 3.22), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)family-body shape (Ref. 93245
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (tm=1).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (20 of 100) .