Species group: Cichlids
Other common names: Threadfin Cichlid; Elusive Cichlid; Heckle's Acara; Thread-Finned Acara; Thread-Finned Eartheater
Scientific name: Acarichthys heckelii
The Thread-Finned Cichlid is native to rivers in Brazil and Guyana in South America. Due to its feeding habits this monotypic species was originally considered to be a member of the genus Geophagus, but was found to be different from this and the closely related Aequidens by differences in the shape. Because of these questions about it taxonomy, the species is also known by Acara heckelii, Acara subocularis, Acarichthys heckeli, Acarichthys heckelli and Geophagus thayeri.
Acarichthys heckelii is an attractive Cichlid with an oval body shape and lateral compression. It has a pointed snout, rounded caudal fin and pointed dorsal and anal fins. The dorsal, caudal and anal fins has extended rays, more evident in males, giving it their common name. It is pale in color with iridescent scales in blue, red and silver, they have a darker spot into the middle of their flanks on either side. Males have longer fins and are more vibrant in color.
Acarichthys heckelii can be aggressive and is quite territorial so should either be in a species tank in male/female pairs or with similar sized robust fish.
Acarichthys heckelii will accept most foods including Cichlid pellets and flake as well as live/frozen food such as bloodworm and shrimp.