Morphology Data of Hemichromis fasciatus
Identification keys
Main Ref. Teugels, G.G. and D.F.E. Thys van den Audenaerde, 2003
Appearance refers to
Bones in OsteoBase

Sex attributes

Specialized organs
Different appearance
Different colors

Descriptive characteristics of juvenile and adult

Striking features
Body shape lateral fusiform / normal
Cross section
Dorsal head profile
Type of eyes
Type of mouth/snout
Position of mouth

Diagnosis: 5 dark blotches or cross bars on sides, often alternating with narrower intercalary bars, the first blotch confluent with the opercular spot, the fifth on caudal-fin base; upper profile of snout straight or concave (Ref. 53405).

Description: body cylindrical; premaxilla extremely protrusible; lower jaw distinctly prominent; outer jaw teeth mixed mono- and bicuspid, inner jaw teeth monocuspid, pharyngeal jaw teeth bicuspid; dentition reduced to an incomplete row of inner teeth in upper jaw; micro-gillrakers present; scales cycloid; caudal peduncle rather short (length 11.0-16.0% of standard length) (Ref. 53405).

Coloration: live colour usually copper-red through olivaceous to dark brown on back; lower part of body orange-red, more pinkish on belly; large, irregular black blotch on upper area of opercle; 4-5 large, black blotches along midline of sides and 3-5 rows of small black spots in between in specimens over 100 mm SL; narrow, dark lacrymal band sometimes present; vertical fins light grey; soft parts of dorsal and anal fins with basal reticulate pattern; spinous part of dorsal fin bright red; soft part of dorsal and distal part of caudal fins edged with bright red; anterior 1/3 of pelvics blackish, other 2/3 light grey; pectoral fins hyaline (Ref. 53405). Juveniles without orange-red coloration of adults, showing traces of dark intercalary bars; subadults and adults also with dark intercalary bars when under stress (Ref. 53405).

Ease of Identification

Meristic characteristics of Hemichromis fasciatus

Lateral Lines 2 Interrupted: No
Scales on lateral line 28 - 30
Pored lateral line scales
Scales in lateral series
Scale rows above lateral line
Scale rows below lateral line
Scales around caudal peduncle
Gill clefts (sharks/rays only)
Gill rakers
on lower limb 7 - 9
on upper limb


Dorsal fin(s)

Fins number 1
Finlets No. Dorsal   0
Ventral  0
Spines total 14 - 15
Soft-rays total 11 - 13
Adipose fin absent

Caudal fin


Anal fin(s)

Fins number 1
Spines total 3 - 3
Soft-rays total 8 - 11

Paired fins

Pectoral Attributes  
Pelvics Attributes  
Main Ref. (e.g. 9948)
Glossary ( e.g. cephalopods )
Entered by Musschoot, Tobias
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