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Astatheros nourissati

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Astatheros nourissati is a relatively new to the cichlid hobby having been typed by Allgayer in 1989. The species name is an honorific for French ichthyologist Jean Claude Nourissat.

Astatheros nourissati is a bi-parental, substrate-spawning Central American cichlid found in Mexico and Guatemala which forms strong pair bonds. According to, this fish is "Distributed in the eastern affluents of the Rio Usumacinta system: Rio Usumacinta, Rio Salinas, Rio de la Pasión, Rio Lacantum and their affluents"

Males get up to 10 or 11 inches while females stay a couple of inches smaller. Males may have longer fin extensions and a more robust head profile. Despite their large size, Astatheros nourissati is not very aggressive and perhaps a bit shy in the aquarium at times.

Astatheros nourissati is a good-looking fish. The body is elongated. The overall color is a golden tan with darker markings and a red blush. The common name for this fish is the Bluemouth Cichlid and both males and females have a blue lower lip.


Astatheros nourissati is a riverine fish and is usually found where there is strong current.


Astatheros nourissati aren't difficult to care for, but you do need a large tank. I kept my fish in a 6-foot, 110G tank filtered by a large, external pond filter. Provide a sand substrate and tank temperatures of 75-80F. Provide some rockwork or terracotta pots.


Astatheros nourissati is a sand sifter and opportunistic predator. In the aquarium, this fish spends a lot sifting through the substrate. I fed a variety of prepared foods such as Tetra Cichlid Sticks, Xtreme Big Fella pellets, Dainichi Veggie Deluxe and New Life Spectrum pellets. You can feed both large and small pellets. The fish seem to enjoy sifting through the substrate to find smaller items.

Astatheros nourissati

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