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Apistogramma hippolytae


  1. Fwd: Help me ID Fish, A.hippolytae perhaps?
    by Mike & Diane Wise <apistowise/> (Thu, 25 Mar 1999)
  2. Fwd: Help me ID Fish, A.hippolytae perhaps?
    by David Sanchez <barbax2/> (Tue, 30 Mar 1999)
  3. A.hippolytae Spawning
    by David Sanchez <barbax2/> (Wed, 31 Mar 1999)
  4. Apistogramma hippolytae
    by Mike & Diane Wise <apistowise/> (Thu, 28 Sep 2000)

Fwd: Help me ID Fish, A.hippolytae perhaps?

by Mike & Diane Wise <apistowise/>
Date: Thu, 25 Mar 1999
To: apisto/


It sounds like A. hippolytae alright, but I've never seen an apisto with a
"golden amber colored lateral band". A. hippolytae doesn't have abdominal
stripes, either. Both of these features on apisto are normally dark chocolate
brown to black. I assume you mean that the area above the lateral band is
amber colored and the abdominal region has turquoise colored scales. This is
normal on A. hippolytae, especially when they are in their preferred water
conditions. A. hippolytae is found in the lower tributaries of the Rio Negro,
Igarapés entering into Lago (Lake) Manacapuru on the Rio Solimões west of
Manaus, and in the Rio Tefé. These are blackwater biotopes. A. hippolytae can
live in more normal water conditions, but shows best in peat stained water
with a pH <6, dGH<3º, and 0ºdKH. I found them to be wonderful fish. The males
"fight" for territory using side-by-side lateral flaring of their fins that
turn deep red-black, tail slapping, and finally face-to-face gill flaring.
When gill flaring, the cheek stripe shrinks to a dark patch on the outer edge
of the operula, like that seen on Thorichthys meeki (Firemouth Cichlid). This
gives the the illusion of being a giant head with a large eye. I've never seen
males damage each other in the battles. Males are what I call casually
polygamous. They try to aquire harems, but are happy with one female. They
don't bother females very much. Breeding requires slightly more extreme
conditions. My experience is that the eggs will not hatch until the pH drops
below 5.5 with the same low hardness values listed above. Once these values
are met, a fully mature female can have broods of 150 - 200 fry! They are
excellent mothers, keeping everything away from their fry. The fry are easy to
raise on baby brine shrimp and powder foods.

Mike Wise

> Subject: Help me ID Fish, A.hippolytae perhaps?
> Date: Wed, 24 Mar 1999 22:14:57 -0800 (PST)
> From: David Sanchez <>
> To: Apisto list <>
> Hi Guys
> Hey Mike the fish we talked about earlier this week I
> beleive is A.hippolytae. I think it's color threw me
> off, as all the pictures I have ever seen showed a
> rather drab fish. Though they are no A.hongsloi, but
> they are rather handsome fellows. ( I must however
> admit I have never found an Apisto i didn't like :])
> It has a high backed body shape, a rounded caudel fin
> with vertical stripes. It has a distinct caudel spot.
> It has a golden amber colored lateral band with a very
> distinct lateral spot that touches the dorsal fin. The
> lateral spot is surrounded by a golden amber color. It
> has some turqouise colored abdominal stripes. It has a
> fair amount of yellow in the fins. I know they are
> coming out of brazil and were brought in with some
> A.pertensis and T.candidi. Just wanted to be sure. I
> have never had them before , if they are A.hippolytae,
> has anyone had any experiences with them? I would
> appreciate any info on them.
> Anyway I brought them home because they were with the
> candidi's and heck they looked like they needed a good
> home.
> ===
> David Sanchez
> Casselberry, FL
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Fwd: Help me ID Fish, A.hippolytae perhaps?

by David Sanchez <barbax2/>
Date: Tue, 30 Mar 1999
To: apisto/

the hippolytae have been quite territorial and with 3
> in a 20 gallon I
> have had to add more bogwood and obstacles to
> one male from
> beating up everyone in the tank.

I can attest to this also Kathy! My wild hippoltae are
rather pugnacious as well. I have observed two females
in particuler stake out some territory and chase all
who dare come near. I have a couple males that are
fighting over the limits of their territories as well.
I hope to have a spwning report very soon. Perhaps we
can compare notes. I have them in a 30 gallon tank with
lots of flower pots and coconut shells. By the way the
two females are beginning to get a very nice yellow
color and the fin tips seem to gleam as well. My males
look awesome! As Mike Wise said they can indeed be very
attractive given the proper conditions. The males have
a yellow scheen to them with nice golden amber
highlights along the lateral line and lateral spot. The
abdominal area has some realy nice turqouise color as
well. I am using very soft acidic water and I think
this is realy bringing out their splendor. Good luck to
you with yours.


David Sanchez
Casselberry, FL
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A.hippolytae Spawning

by David Sanchez <barbax2/>
Date: Wed, 31 Mar 1999
To: apisto/

Hi guys.

Well I knew would it be soon by the behavior I had been
observing the last few days but my A.hippolytae have
made me very happy with the recent discovery of two
newly laid bathces of eggs. I am very happy with my
source of wild Apisto's as most of them are spawning
within a couple of weeks.

The water was "black water" Ph 4.2, 0 DH, less then 20
microsiemans, 0 KH and a temperture of 76 F. The water
was further treated with peatmoss to give it the nice
amber color and to arrive at the above values. 

The environment was a 30 gallon long with a mixed
population of Apisto's including A.pertensis,
A.gephyra, and the A.hippolytae. The bottom was covered
with a thin layer of sand and consisted of a heavy
concentration of flower pots and coconut shells. Their
was only a slight current provided by a giant sponge
filters air lift.

The spawning act was observed early in the morning at
about an hour after daybreak( My Apisto's are receiving
natural daylight, hey I'm in Florida) It appeared that
the female had staked out a spawning site and she
alerted the male to her readiness as can be deduced by
the defence of the cave for several days by the female.
In all I estimate about 150 eggs roughly for both
spawns. Intrestingly the female can be seen defending
the immediate perimeter around the cave from
allintruders and not the inside of the cave as much.
She is a very attentive mother and can be seen
pulverizing any fish that dare come close to her cave!
I have removed one of the females with her spawn to a
ten gallon tank to ensure I get some fry, the other
female I have left in the tank so that I may observe
and learn more about their behavior. Well thats it for
now I will keep you informed on how things go. Good
luck to you also Greg and Kathy with your


David Sanchez
Casselberry, FL
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Apistogramma hippolytae

by Mike & Diane Wise <apistowise/>
Date: Thu, 28 Sep 2000
To: apisto/


At the size you have now it is hard to sex them. As they get older them males'
ventral fins will become longer and not show the black leading edge of the

This is a blackwater apisto so breeding requires pH<6 and soft water. They'll
live fine in less acidic moderately hard water, but don't expect any fry. At the
proper conditions this fish is very prolific (>200 fry/spawn!) and long lived (my
pair was bought in March, 1997 @ 2"/5cm size and still going strong).

Mike Wise wrote:

> Hello all, Is there an easy way to sex non-broodcare Ap. hippolytae.  All the
> pictures in books I have and on the net show females in brood care colours.
> I have 5, which are wild caught so there is a variation in sizes - but at
> about 1.25" I would have thought I could sex them. Do I have to wait until a
> female comes into breeding colour.
> TIA - Alan W

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