Speckled Pavon

Cichla temensis

About This Animal

SIZE: Up to 39 inches (99 cm)

RANGE: Amazon River basin in the Negro and Uatuma River drainages; Orinoco River basin in tributaries of the Orinoco River in Venezuela

HABITAT: Deeper littoral areas in lagoons and sandy and rocky banks of main river channels

DIET: Diurnal piscivores that consume a variety of prey, but mainly small fish

ON EXHIBIT: Flooded Amazon River in the Lower Canyon of River Journey

The speckled pavon , also known as banded peacock cichlid, speckled peacock bass, tucunare pinema, striped tucunare, royal pavon, painted pavon and pavon lapa is the largest member of the cichlid family in South America.  It serves as an important food fish produced by the aquaculture industry.  It is also prized as a gamefish.

Many years ago, state agencies in Texas and Florida introduced this fish in selected waters to serve as a sport fish, but none of the fish survived due to water temperature extremes.  The speckled pavon exhibits sexual dimorphism in which the male grows larger than the female, and the male develops a nuchal hump as he matures.

According to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the speckled pavon has not been evaluated (NE) or not listed.