and a black-gray round caudal blotch. All fins are colorless and
Aggressive territorial females show a black suborbital band and a
black lateral blotch. The pelvic fins and the anal fin present a gray
margin, while the other fins remain colorless. During reproduction,
the background color is yellow. When females guard eggs and
larvae, they show the same color pattern as aggressive territorial
females, except that the margin at the pelvic and anal fins is black.
When fry swim freely at around one week, the females present, in
addition, a black interrupted lateral band and a black round caudal
blotch. Next they display a pattern similar to the one of aggressive
territorial females, except that during reproduction the margin at
the anal and pelvic fins is always black. Like males, when they are
afraid they are brownish with abdominal stripes.
Apistogramma wapisana belongs plainly to the A. pertensis
supercomplex. It can be easily separated from the other slender
species group, the A. agassizii and A. uaupesi supercomplexes, as
all of these species present a distinct sexual dimorphism and a
totally different color pattern and fin shape. A. wapisana can also be
easily differentiated from the isolated slender species A. diplotaenia
KULLANDER 1987 by its completely different lateral markings and
The closest species to A. wapisana are A. meinkeni KULLANDER
1980, A. sp. “chao,” A. sp. “Weißsaum,” and A. sp. “Tiquié.” They
can be differentiated by their larger height, markings on the fins,
and different color pattern.
Apistogramma wapisana is actually known from the vicinity of
Boa Vista, in the upper Rio Branco system.
1984: It was imported from Manaus without information about
1993: Elsässer found the new species in the Igarapés Água Boa
and Iuciniu, as well as in the Rio Cauamé.
1998: Gottwald, Zucker, and Seva brought several specimens
from the Igarapé Au-au, a tributary of the Rio Cauamé, and from a
small igarapé in the Boa Vista outskirts.
The species has also been reported from the vicinity of Barcellos
do Rio Negro and from a Guyanese affluent of the Rio Branco, but
these data need to be confirmed by further studies.
Gottwald, Zucker, and Seva found this species in two localities
visited in October 1998. In the Igarapé Au-au at this time the
water was lightly brownish and relatively low—on average 1 to
1. 5 meters. The pH was between 5. 5 and 6, and the hardness,
although not measured, was likely comparable to those of the
Rio Branco—almost zero. Water temperature was more than
30°C (86ºF), and air temperature was more than 40°C ( 104°F).
In a nameless Igarapé at the Boa Vista outskirts, the water was
lightly brownish with a temperature more than 30°C ( 86°F). From
that it appears that A. wapisana prefers muddy and slow streams
influenced by white water.
Spawning was easily obtained with the fish kept in water with the
following parameters: pH around 6, GH 4°, and less than 1° KH. The
species, in spite of its small size, appears relatively prolific—the first
brood resulted in 20 fry, the second and third more than 40 each.
Fig. 2a: Drawing of A. wapisana male, territorial, slightly aggressive.
Fig. 2b: Drawing of A. wapisana female, breeding coloration, aggressive.