Limia perugiae (Evermann & Clark, 1906)

Etymology:

Limia: Limia derived from the Latin ‘limus’ meaning mud, pertaining to the feeding habits of the fish

perugiae: named after Dr. Alberto Purugia

First description:

Evermann, B.W. and H.W. Clark. 1906:

New fishes from Santo Domingo. Proc. U. S. Natl. Mus., 30 (1478): 851-855.

Synonyms:
Platypoecilus perugiae Evermann & Clark, 1906 
Poecilia perugiae (Evermann & Clark, 1906)

Subgenus:

Limia

Type Locality:

Small stream in San Francisco Mts., Santo Domingo [Dominican Republic].

Distribution:

Southern slopes of Dominican Republic.

Populations:

Lago Enriquillo

Habitat:

Found in shallow water which is generally heavily-vegetated. It can also be found in brackish conditions and even hyper-saline lakes in certain locations.

Size:

Males to 30 mm SL, females 50 mm SL.

Distinguishing Characteristics:

The body shape and colour of is affected by the salinity of the water they are found in. The higher the salinity the smaller and less colourful the fish are. Body and head shape is also different with higher saline fish have a much more rounded head and a more streamlined body. 

Colour/Pattern Variability:

Males:

The Dorsal and caudal fins are pale yellow to orange depending on location, the edge of the fins is black along with some of the rays. The body colour is grey/brown colour which is offset by the way the scales catch the light and gives a metallic silver to blue sparkling effect. Stripes are visible of some males

Females:

The dorsal fin is without colour except for the black spot at the base at the back of the fin. The caudal fin is a very pale yellow/orange, all other fins are without colour. The body colour ranges from silver to pale yellow/brown with a white belly. A longitudinal zig-zag strip is also visible.

Behaviour:

A peaceful and active fish. In the wild can usually be found in large shoals.

Water conditions:

Limia perugiae is found in warm waters, therefore a temperature range of 72º to 80º is recommended.

A pH of over 7 is required, they will be happy in harder water. (Some populations actually live in salt lakes so some populations will tolerate brackish to seawater conditions and higher).

Feeding:

Not difficult, all limias are omnivores and will eat will take flake, granular food, live and frozen with equal enthusiasm.

Breeding Notes:

Males are persistent in chasing females, can be bred easily in the aquarium as long as there is plenty of food and plant cover for the fry to hide in as adults will predate fry.
Gestation takes around 4 – 6 weeks and broods of up to 40 fry have been reported.

Moving the female to a well planted nursery tank will help ensure good fry numbers.

It is thought that water temperatures can affect sex ratios, with higher temperatures producing more females.

Note: The genus Limia and Poecilia can hybridise with each other so where possible keep the species apart.

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