Apistogramma panduro

Apistogramma panduro, or Apistogramma Pandurini, is a species of dwarf cichlid that is native to the streams and tributaries of the Amazon Basin in South America. This fish has gained popularity among aquarists due to its colorful appearance, unique behavior, and relatively easy care. In this article, we will provide you with a detailed overview of the Apistogramma panduro, including its size and appearance, region, behavior, diet, and how to keep them at home.


Apistogramma panduro is a small fish that grows up to 2.5 inches (6.5 cm) in length. The males are slightly larger than the females and have more pronounced fins. These fish have a vibrant coloration with a metallic blue-green body, red and orange fins, and a yellow stripe running along their back. The dorsal fin of the males is more elongated and pointed, while the females have a more rounded dorsal fin. Apistogramma panduro has a typical cichlid shape with a broad, flattened head and a slightly curved body.


Apistogramma panduro is native to the Amazon Basin in South America, specifically in Peru and Brazil. They are found in the blackwater streams of the Napo river of Peru, as well as the Ucayali River, Nanay river and Marañon River. The water in nature where they are found is dense and acidic. These fish prefer a pH range of 4.0 to 6 and water temperatures between 22 – 28 °C (72-82 °F).


Apistogramma panduro is an aggressive species of cichlid that can be kept in a community aquarium with other fish of similar size providing the tank is big enough. They are known for their territorial behavior, especially during breeding. It is recommended to keep them in a pair or a small group of one male and two or three females. The males are particularly aggressive during breeding, so it is essential to provide plenty of hiding places for the females to escape. They also enjoy having a lot of vegetation and caves to explore.


Apistogramma panduro is a mostly carnivorous fish that feeds on a variety of food in the wild preferably meaty food high in protein, including small invertebrates, crustaceans, insects, and algae. In captivity, they can be fed a diet of high-quality flakes, pellets, frozen or live foods such as bloodworms, brine shrimp, and daphnia. It is recommended to provide them with a varied diet to ensure they get all the essential nutrients they need.

Keeping Apistogramma panduro at home

To keep Apistogramma panduro at home, you will need a tank that is at least 20 gallons (76 liters) in size. A sand or fine gravel substrate with plenty of plants and driftwood is recommended, as this mimics their natural environment. They like ‘busy’ tanks with lots of hiding places. These fish prefer acidic water with a pH range of 4.0-6.0 and a water hardness of 3-6 dGH. The temperature should be maintained between 22-28 °C (72-82 °F). In nature, these fish have to deal with fluctuating temperatures. Keeping fish at the minimum or maximum temperature for a long period of time is not always desirable and can shorten the average lifespan of these magnificent fish.

It is essential to provide plenty of hiding places, such as caves or plants, for the fish to retreat to when they feel threatened or during breeding. A filter and regular water changes are necessary to maintain good water quality, and it is recommended to keep the tank well-aerated. Apistogramma panduro is a sensitive fish, so any changes in the water parameters should be done gradually.

Of all the cichlids you can own this particular cichlid is just plain and simple gorgeous to have and enjoy in your aquarium each and every day. A little fish with a big personality. Found throughout the amazon. But be aware we are still dealing with a cichlid here. They can be feisty showing aggression from time to time, especially when they are breeding. Keep them in pairs and observe their natural behavior. By providing them with the right environment, diet, and care, you can enjoy the colorful and unique personality of the Apistogramma panduro in your home aquarium.

Scientific nameApistogramma panduro
Type of aquariumCommunity aquarium, with non-aggressive fish of similar size
SizeUp to 6.5 cm / 2.5 inches
RegionAmazon Basin in South America, specifically in Peru and Brazil
Ideal tank sizeAt least 76 liters / 20 gallons
Ideal water temperature22 – 28 °C / 72 – 82 °F
pH4.0 – 6.0
DietMostly carnivorous, with a varied diet of high-quality flakes, pellets, frozen or live foods such as bloodworms, brine shrimp, and daphnia
ReproductionBreeds in pairs or small groups of one male and two or three females, with males displaying territorial behavior during breeding
Life span5 to 10 years in captivity
SchoolingCan be kept in a pair or small group, but not recommended to be kept in large schools

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