Cryptoheros nanoluteus or Yellow Convict

The name of Cryptoheros nanoluteus is derived from its golden colour. It’s a moderate cichlid that can be kept in a small group.


Cryptoheros nanoluteus

Cryptoheros nanoluteus was described for the first time by Allgayer in 1994. Cryptoheros, derived from Crypto means hidden or sneaky, heros is the genus for South-American cichlids. Nano means small in Latin, Luteus is yellow. The fish is also known under its synonym Archocentrus nanoluteus.


Boca del Toro, Panama.


The length is 10 centimetres but females are a little smaller. The name of the fish is derived from its golden, yellowish colour. The head has a greenish fade; the back body has a blue fading. On the dorsal fin there is a red rim, on the body there are vertical stripes that might present themselves as a row of spots.


To keep these fish a tank is needed starting at 1.20 metres. The tank need to be set with plants, lots of rocks and driftwood. When settings up the tank, make sure there are crevasses and burrows where the fish can hide. The substrate is sand, when the breeding season starts, a few burrows will be dug to shelter the fry.


Temperature: 24-28° Celsius.
pH: 7-7,5
gH: 5-8


These fish eat everything. Both live foods as frozen are accepted. Mosquito larvae, Mysis and brine shrimp will be eaten. As supplement, flake food can be offered.


They are peaceful fish that can be kept with several other species in the tank. They can be kept with live-bearers, catfish and characiforms species.


Breeding the Cryptoheros nanoluteus is fairly simple. The females take the initiative. They are substrate spawners that will choose a burrow to set off their eggs and fertilise them. These are then fiercely guarded by the parents. After 3 days the eggs hatch and after about one week the fry will swim freely in the tank. They can be fed with grinded flakes or brine shrimp nauplii.



Coby – J. de Lange

Copyright Pictures

Jan Fioole

Klaus Steinhaus

Additional information






Minimum aquarium length in cm

Length maximum in cm

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Social Behaviour

Breeding behaviour





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