Aphyosemion hera Huber 1998

Male Photo: Courtesy of Tony Terceira

Female Photo: Courtesy of Tony Terceira

Meaning of Name

Really named after the 'beautiful' female. The Greek Goddess Hera.

First Description

Huber J.H. 1998.

A new Cyprinodont species with a uniquely-colored female, Aphyosemion hera n.sp. (Cyprinodontiformes, Pisces), from northwestern Gabon.

Revue Suisse de Zoologie, 105 (2): 331-338.

See this link for full description & photographs.




D = 16, A = 16, D/A = +8






  • Benguié (Bengui)
  • Lambaréné
  • ARK 96/1-2
  • TDK 97 / 29
  • TDK 97 / 30
  • GJS 00 / 29 - Bengui 1-2
  • GJS 00 / 28 - Bengui 3

Male Lambaréné. Photo: Courtesy of Ed Pürzl

Female Lambaréné. Photo: Courtesy of Ed Pürzl

Yellow form.
Photo courtesy of Allen Boatman

ARK 96/1 & 2 -

ARK 1-2 / 96 taken at the 2004 SKS convention.
Photo courtesy of Dick Cox.

ARK 1-2 / 96 male
Photo courtesy of Vasco Gomes

ARK 1-2 / 96 female
Photo courtesy of Vasco Gomes

GJS 00/29 Bengui 1-2 - Water temperature 23°C. pH 6·4 and conductivity 43 microseimens. Altitude was 10-20 metres. Mogens Juhl collected 2 trios here along with an electric catfish.

Bengui 1-2 GJS 00 / 29
Photo courtesy of Vasco Gomes


GJS 00/28 Bengui 3 - Mogens Juhl collected this code in 2000. I male & 4 females were collected. The females were collected by scooping the collecting net into the mud.


TDK 97/29 - 45 km after the bridge over the Ogooue River in Lambarené.


TDK 97/30 - 43 km after the bridge over the Ogooue River in Lambarené .

TDK 97 / 30
Photo courtesy of Allen Boatman

Type Locality

Collected by Romer & Krumenacker in July 1996. Benguié village appro. 45 km northeast from Lambaréné using the bridge over the river Ogooué (in Lambaréné) as a starting point.




Shady, primary forest areas. In the summer of 1996 (the dry season) water was shallow & clear (20 cm deep) & 1-2 metres wide. The base was covered in dead leaves. Conductivity 20µs, pH 6, water temperature 21°C. Collected with A.gabunense, E.sexfasciatus & E.singa.

Mogens Juhl collected them in very shallow water over a thick layer of mud.
Sympatric sp. include A.marginatum & Malopterus electricus, the electric catfish.

Distinguishing Characteristics See remarks in colour variability below.
Colour/Pattern Variability Differences exist in the anal fin which can be yellow or pale blue with red spots in males. Females are quite unique in there colouration & patterning & not hard to seperate from other known species in the genus.

Discovered by Swiss Killie keepers Hermann Romer and Mr René Krumenacker in July 1996.

Collected by Romer in 1996 in Bengui village. Pascal and Robert tried to find this locality but could not find the location due to a vague description by Romer.

Collected by Peter Tirbak, Father Vladimir Derugin of Palo Alto & Kleisch, 1998, Gabon in locations TDK 97 / 29 & TDK 97 / 30. They were originally thought to be all females but they were young fish & later sexed out to both sexes.

Collected by Robert Guggenbühl, Pascal Sewer & Mogens Juhl, July-August 2000, Gabon at - GJS 00/28 Bengui
é 3 where 1 male and 4 females were caught.

The village of Bengui
é is in fact 4 seperate villages. Mogens sent me the following information -"Arriving from south the first Benguié you meet is Benguié 3, then comes 2,1 and finally Benguié 4. Which of these villages that was actually Romers Benguié was not certain".

Breeding Notes

Romer in Killi-Data gives a breeding report. Fish were easy to breed on mops & kept to darker areas of the tank. Water incubated eggs hatch in 20 days at room temperature. First food was newly hatched brine shrimp. Growth reported as being slow. Sexing out started at 5 months with breeding at 7. Full size taking 12 months.

Richard Sproson in BKA newsletter No.444, September 2002 gives a short report on breeding. Fairly easy to breed. Eggs are laid on mops & water stored for 20 days at room temperature. Fry take newly hatched brine shrimp on hatching. Growth rate is fairly slow with sexing out at 5 months & adult size at 12 months. First spawns occur at 7 months.

Peter Uhlann in BKA newsletter No.488, May 2006 reports not much breeding activity below 20°C. No direct light above the tank as these are shy fish. Egg production up to 15 per day. He noted that eggs were more yellow than other Aphyosemion sp he had bred.
Fry are strongly pigmented on hatching being a 'pepper pattern' over the whole body. Fry growth is slow. At 1 cm young fish start to develop the horizontal dark band on the body. At 2·5 cm males start to colour up. First in the fins, then the body.
This species can be bred in a planted 'permanent' set up. Fry will appear at the surface & do not seem to be molested by the parents.

TDK 97-29
Juvenile male just starting to show through with adult colouration.
Photo courtesy of Gary Hoover.


Diameter of Egg 1mm or slightly larger.