Wet Spot Tropical Fish Facebook link Wet Spot Tropical Fish Youtube link Wet Spot Tropical Fish Pinterest link

August 22, 2014

I won’t suggest you try to say Tahuantinsuyoa macantzatza three times fast – most of us here at the Wet Spot can hardly say it once. It’s much easier to call this fish by its common name, the “Inka Stone Fish”. These dwarf-type cichlids from Peru were only described in 1986 and are still incredibly rare in the hobby. Their maximum length of four inches and relatively undemanding care make them an excellent option for the South American Cichlid enthusiast. Neutral to slightly acidic, fairly soft water in standard tropical temperatures should keep the Inka Stone Fish happy. Be wary, however – these fish develop a definite hierarchy as they mature and a brooding pair will relentlessly defend their territory and fry. When a pair forms from a young group, it is best to remove the rest of the fish to another tank and leave the pair to their own devices. The pair will prefer to brood on movable pieces of furniture such as small, lightweight pieces of shale or leaf litter that they can clean and arrange to their liking. As biparental mouthbrooders, both the male and female Stone Fish will care for the young. However, shortly after the fry are of swimming age, it appears likely in the literature that one of the pair will take over sole responsibility for the fry and turn on their mate. Because of this, a brooding parent should again be removed and not reintroduced until the fry are old enough to fend for themselves in a grow-out tank. Reintroducing the pair should be done with the greatest of care and attention. Overall, these beautiful cichlids appear to be unfussy eaters and spawning reports are not particularly isolated. If you care to call us and ask about them, feel free to forego the scientific name – we definitely do around here. On the other hand, if you are confident in your ability to pronounce their name, we’d love to hear that, too!


Aside from these fabulous cichlids, we’ve gotten many species of wild Peruvian Corydoras. Of our many new species, featured both last week and this in our New Fish section, I wanted to feature just a few – Corydoras sp. C127, brought in as C. cortesi, Corydoras pastazensis and the similar Corydoras orcesi “Johanna Cory”. All three are saddle-nosed Corydoras with long, dished faces and extended barbels. They all grow to an adult size of about two and three quarters of an inch and enjoy neutral to slightly acidic water. Typical tropical temperatures around 77 degrees Fahrenheit will keep them in good condition and a sandy substrate will allow them to root around for food as they do in the wild without damaging their delicate barbels.


Corydoras sp. C127 is the outlier off the trio with a pale body and dark back, reminiscent of C. fowleri or C. semiaquilus. Their slate coloration extends over the top of their face to the front of their gill plates and terminates irregularly along their lateral line. Their gill plates in particular are graced with iridescent coloration, flashing gold or green in the proper light.


Corydoras orcesi was once thought to be a subspecies of C. pastazensis but is generally accepted as its own species now, though there are still some who believe its status as its own species is unwarranted. They are indeed very similar species – each one has a buff base color with a bold black stripe crossing vertically over their eye as well as down their body from their leading dorsal ray. Both feature white caudal fins with thin vertical black barring. The greatest visual distinction between the species is in the patterning on their sides – Corydoras orcesi is marked by large black spots while C. pastazensis is peppered with tiny black speckles.


We received many more than these four fish in the past few weeks, so be sure to check out the new fish list on the right side of the screen. Thank you for reading and we’ll see you back here next week!

Jessica Supalla