Bujurquina oenolaemus

ryansmith83

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Bujurquina oenolaemus is a small acara-like cichlid from a restricted range in Bolivia. The fish have only been found in Rio Aguas Calientes, a thermal river with water temperatures up to 100 - 105F (38 - 41C). Due to ornamental fish exports from Bolivia being restricted, and the rumor that this hot spring is now polluted, it's quite possible that these fish are endangered or worse in their natural habitat.

I was lucky enough to snag a small group from Kevin at Tangled Up In Cichlids back in August. They quickly got to work bullying and harassing one another as they established territories in their new home.

 

ryansmith83

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Within a couple of days, the largest male and one of the females began dancing and showing off.

Bujurquina are an interesting cichlid in a lot of ways; one of their unique qualities among SA fish is that they spawn on a mobile platform, usually a leaf or a pebble, and then move that around the tank. Instead of defending a stationary territory, they drag the eggs to a safer place.

Here you can see the pair courting and the female arranging and cleaning leaves, trying to decide on a suitable spawning surface.


 

tlindsey

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Bujurquina oenolaemus is a small acara-like cichlid from a restricted range in Bolivia. The fish have only been found in Rio Aguas Calientes, a thermal river with water temperatures up to 100 - 105F (38 - 41C). Due to ornamental fish exports from Bolivia being restricted, and the rumor that this hot spring is now polluted, it's quite possible that these fish are endangered or worse in their natural habitat.

I was lucky enough to snag a small group from Kevin at Tangled Up In Cichlids back in August. They quickly got to work bullying and harassing one another as they established territories in their new home.

Wow great pickup! I personally never heard of them. They look similar to Geophagus with the markings. What temperature are you keeping
the heater set at?
 
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ryansmith83

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Sometime in the early AM on Friday, September 4 the first pair spawned on a leaf and dragged it into a resin log decoration to give themselves some cover.

Deciding not to chance it, I made the decision to pull the leaf and cut it in half, returning half the eggs to the pair and putting the other half in a floating fry ring. Surprisingly those eggs had hatched into wrigglers by noon on Saturday, roughly 30 hours later. That's the quickest I've known SA cichlid eggs to develop.

 

ryansmith83

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Wow great pickup! I personally never heard of them. They look similar to Geophagus with the markings. What temperature are you keeping
the heater set at?
I had them at around 86F for the first week to stimulate their appetites. They were a bit hesistant to eat for me at first. But at that temperature the aggression was off the charts, so I lowered it down to around 82 - 84F. This calmed them down, but as you can see in the videos, it also dampened their colors a bit. They were much more vibrant in hotter water.

Bujurquina are odd because they're acaras but they do have a lot of Geophagus-like qualities. In addition to mouthbrooding, this particular species does sift through sand for food. Kullander writes in their formal description that it may be a specialized molluscivore based on its mouth shape and jaw structure, and the fact that they found crushed mollusk shells in the guts of the dissected fish.
 

ryansmith83

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I forgot to mention that the species name, oenolaemus, is derived from the Greek oinos + laimos, or "wine-throat." You can see evidence of the burgundy-purple colored face and throats in the videos of them courting.
 
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