That's not a Green Terror!

Information and guides to the south American Cichlid genus Andinoacara

Andinoacara coeruleopunctatus (Kner, 1863)


Common Name

  • None


  • Andinoacara coeruleopunctatus, Musilová et al, 2009, new combination
  • 'Aequidens' coeruleopunctatus, Stawikowski et al, 1998, provisional name
  • Cichlosoma (Aequidens) coeruleopunctatum, Regan, 1913, new combination
  • Aequidens coeruleopunctatus, Jordan et al, 1896, new combination
  • Astronotus (Astronotus) coeruleopuntatus, Eigenmann, 1893, new combination
  • Astronotus (Acara) coeruleopunctata, Eigenmann et al, 1891, new combination
  • Acara coeruleopunctata, Kner et al, 1863:16, original combination

Type Locality

Río Chagres, Panama.

Distribution of Andinoacara coeruleopunctatus is believed to span from Panama and as far north as Costa Rica, and as far south as western Colombia. This makes this cichlid a South American cichlid in Central America, the polar oppposite of Mesoheros festae which is a Central American cichlid that has found itself in South America.


coeruleo = blue (Latin) + punctatus = spotted (Latin); This is in reference to the blue dots scattered on the flanks of the fish


Average adult size: 5-6"/13-15cm


As an omnivorous fish they are generally easy to feed. It is suggested to feed a good quality cichlid stick as staple, and supplement this with regular feeds of live and frozen foods such as earthworms, prawns, mussels, and other such foods.

Vegetable matter, including peas, spinach should also form a good proportion of the diet. High protein foods such as beefheart and other red meats are not advisable.

We feed our fish with Vitalis cichlid pellets, and live foods, including bloodworm, and meal worm.


Unless you are keeping this fish in a large tank (4 feet or more) then it is best they are kept as single fish, or as a mate pair. The older the fish the more aggressive and territorial they become, and will consume any fish small enough to fit in their mouths.

Unlike some of the related fish in the rivulatus complex, the pulcher complex is relatively docile and is more compatible with other fish and smaller aquarium setups.

Good tank mates for these fish are other medium cichlids, large characins, such as bleeding heart tetras, and catfish such as corydoras and ancistrus.

These fish are not suitable for a standard community tank.


This species has been shown in literature and by fish keepers in the hobby with both orange and white seam of the dorsal fin. This may may be due to misidentification, or a colour variant as seen in Andinoacara rivulatus.


This video shows tank bred Andinoacara coeruleopunctatus.