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Scientific Name: Boehlkea fredcochui
Family: Characidae, Sub-Family Stevardiinae

About the Cochu

Species Type: Freshwater Fish
Category: Characins

Care Level: Very Easy. Will tolerate a wide range of water parameters including pH, temperature and hardness. Can tolerate higher nitrate levels than other fish and is hardy enough to withstand the cycling process. Will readily eat prepared foods and has no special care requirements.

Origin: Rio Maranon, Peru.

Compatibility/Temperament: Active but peaceful fish, suitable for a community aquarium with similar characins, dwarf cichlids, angelfish, gourami, danio, small catfish and loaches (soft, acidic water) or livebearers (slightly basic water). Must be kept in larger groups (9 or more) or it often turns feisty and may fin nip other fish.


Suitable for a planted tank that provides good swimming room; this fish remains in the mid to upper level of the aquarium. Must be in a group, preferably around 10-12 or more, and given enough space or it will harass other species. Subdued lighting will allow its beautiful blue colouration to shine.

Males are slimmer and more colourful. Spawning will occur in soft, acidic water, in the usual characin fashion.

The species was originally described by Gery (1966) as Hemibrycon fredcochui; in 1986, Ortega & Vari established it in the current genus as Boehlkea fredcochui (Gery 1966). It is currently the only species in the genus.

The genus Boehlkea was previously considered within the Sub-Family Tetragonopterinae, but this classification has for some time been deemed incertae sedis [Latin for "of uncertain placement"]. In a study published in 2010, it was determined that the Sub-Family Tetragonopterinae should only be used for species within the genus Tetragonopterus. [Robert Javonillo, Luiz R. Malabarba, Stanley H. Weitzman and John R. Burns, "Relationships among major lineages of characid fishes (Teleostei: Ostariophysi: Characiformes), based on molecular sequence data," Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, Vol. 54, No. 2 (February 2010)]. Also, J. Marcos Mirande proposed several revisions to the Family Characidae based upon phylogenetic diagnosis in "Weighted parsimony phylogeny of the family Characidae (Teleostei: Characiformes)," Cladistics, Vol. 25, No. 6 (July 2009). Some genera have been moved to a new Sub-Family, while others are now (temporarily) assinged to a specific clade within the Family pending further study.

Cochu Diet

Accepts prepared foods like flake and frozen.


Grows to 2 inches.

Minimum Tank Suggestion

30+ inches in length, this is an active swimmer and without sufficient space can turn feisty with other fish.

Ideal water parameters for Cochu

Soft to moderately hard (hardness up to 15 dGH) acidic to slightly basic (pH up to 8.0) water, temperature 22-26C/72-79F. Will be more colourful in softer, slightly acidic water.

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Cochu 1

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