Reproduction of Oreochromis lidole
Document source:
Main Ref. Trewavas, E., 1983
Mode dioecism
Fertilization in mouth
Mating type
Spawning frequency
Spawning aggregation Ref.  
Batch spawner Ref.  
Reproductive guild bearers
external brooders
Parental Care
Description of life cycle and mating behavior Seems to be sexually mature at a smaller size in Lakes Chungruru and Kingiri than in Lake Malawi (Ref. 2, 54852). Spawns off clean sandy or rocky shores (Ref. 2, 87, 2781) in deeper water (Ref. 2, 87, 2781, 5595, 6150, 40193). Territorial males build a large (Ref. 5595, 40193, 55079) sand-castle nest, with a characteristic spawning cone in its center (Ref. 2, 5595). Females congregate in schools that may number hundreds of individuals (Ref. 2, 2781, 5595). The male genital tassel, which develops together with the breeding dress and imitates a clutch of eggs, is dragged through the nest after the females has deposited some eggs, which are picked up immediately; the female probably mistakes the tassel for eggs that have been forgotten and tries to collect them as well, which results in the eggs being fertilized (Ref. 5595). Females carrying eggs in the mouth move into open, more eutrophic waters, and stay there until the young have almost lost the yolk sac; they feed little during this time (Ref. 2781). Females brood eggs/young, guarding their fry until about 52(-58)mm (Ref. 2, 2781). Females move inshore with their young for at least part of the day; the young are spat out to feed, and food (small phytoplankton) is found in the foregut before the involuted yolk-sac is fully absorbed (Ref. 2781).
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