Coptodon bythobates (Stiassny, Schliewen & Dominey, 1992)
Coptodon bythobates
photo by Bornstein, A.

Family:  Cichlidae (Cichlids), subfamily: Pseudocrenilabrinae
Max. size:  12.6 cm SL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  benthopelagic; freshwater
Distribution:  Africa: endemic to Lake Bermin, Cameroon (Ref. 52307, 81260).
Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 14-16; Dorsal soft rays (total): 11-12; Anal spines: 3-3; Anal soft rays: 7-9. Diagnosis: lower pharyngeal jaw slender and gracile, with a reduced dentigerous plate; gill filaments of first arch short (ca. 10% of head length); 13-16 fleshy gill rakers on first arch; anterior gill rakers not markedly reduced in size (Ref. 81260). Description: body moderately slender (Ref. 52307). Head relatively large, not massive (Ref. 52307), its length 35.6-42.3% SL (Ref. 81260). Lower pharyngeal jaw with weakly bicuspid, curved anterior teeth and straight bicuspid posterior teeth; ventral keel shorter than dentigerous plate; 2-3 rows of teeth in upper jaw, outer row teeth usually bicuspid, but occasionally unicuspid (Ref. 81260). Coloration: reddish bronze, darkest dorsally on flanks; snout, cheek and opercle blood-red; upper lip black, lower lip brilliant white (Ref. 52307, 81260). Belly reddish bronze; slight whitish tinge to fleshy base of pectoral fin; well marked black opercular spot; dorsal fin dusky-black with reddish hue over soft ray membrane; caudal fin red proximally, with black distal border and lower lobe; anal fin red proximally, with black distal border; pelvics black; pectoral fins reddish (Ref. 81260).
Biology:  Prefers to live at depths greater than 8 m; seems to have adapted to greater depths and reduced dissolved oxygen levels; feeds mainly upon vegetative materials (higher plants and algae (Ref. 52307). Probably a pair-bonding, open (Ref. 52307) substrate brooder/spawner (Ref. 52307, 81260), with both parents guarding the brood (Ref. 52307).
IUCN Red List Status: Critically Endangered (CR); Date assessed: 16 February 2009 (B1ab(iii)+2ab(iii)) Ref. (130435)
Threat to humans:  harmless
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