Topaz Cichlid (Archocentrus myrnae)

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Topaz Cichlid

Archocentrus myrnae.jpg
Topaz Cichlid

Archocentrus myrnae

110 Litres (29 US G.)

7.6-10.2cm (3-4 ")




7.0 - 8.5

23 -26 °C (73.4-78.8°F)

5-20 °d

1:1 M:F

Pellet Foods
Flake Foods
Live Foods
Other (See article)

5-10 years



This animal is available captive bred

Additional names

Topaz Cichlid, Topaz Convict, Mojarra

Additional scientific names

Cryptoheros myrnae


Streams, pools and ponds of Central America. Clear, rapid flowing water with a pH of 8.4 and a sandy bottom.[1]


Males are generally larger with more pointed fins. Females have a dark spot on the dorsal fin.


Just add water and fish! Eggs are laid on a stone, earthenware flower pot, or in a depression dug in the substrate. Both parents provide excellent care and protection of eggs and fry. They will attack anything that enters their territory.
Once a pair is formed, the duo will start digging the gravel to form a nest. If there are flower pots then the area around the pot will be cleared to give a cave like appearance. The eggs hatch in 3 days. If eggs turn white it means that either they are not fertile or they are infected by fungus. Eggs usually hatch in 3 days and result in wrigglers. The parent shift the wrigglers to a safer spot in the cave and it is another 5-6 days before the fry are free swimming.

Tank compatibility[edit]

Easy breeding great for beginners! NOT a community fish. Stock only with large fish which can hold their own in a fight, the convict will easily bully fish twice its size. It is best kept in a species specific tank or with similar sized or larger Central American Cichlids, like the Oscar or Firemouth. Recommended tank size is 20G long and higher for a pair of convicts. If there are other fish to be considered as tank mates a bigger tank is required.
DO NOT keep with other "Convicts" (Archocentrus or Cyptoheros species) to avoid hybridizing.


Convicts are not picky eaters, in fact they can be very greedy. Although they will do well on flakes and Cichlid pellets, they will do even better with the addition of frozen/live food like bloodworms and brine shrimp as well as vegetables like chopped spinach and cucumber.

Feeding regime[edit]

Feed once or twice a day.

Environment specifics[edit]

Provide with hiding places/caves and excellent filtration. Can and will dig and uproot fake/live plants.


Convicts mainly stay within their territory, where they do not tolerate other fish. Convicts can be very aggressive and are best suited to an aquarium designed for single species accommodations.
In the wild A. myrnae females may adopt or steal fry from other A. myrnae or from Amphilophus bussingi.[2]


Appear similar to other "Convicts". Have a gold-yellow colour on their flanks.

Species Notes[edit]

Sometimes confused with or hybridized with Archocentrus septemfasciatus.




External links[edit]

  • [1] "Breeding Tank Description" The Cichlid Room Companion. 2000. 19 Jun 2009
  • [2] The Cichlid Room Companion, "Focus Central America-Mixed broods in Archocentrus myrnae" Michi Tobler, 2005. 19 June 2009
  • Retrieved from ""