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This family belongs to the order Anabantidae. The Order is divided into genres: Anabas, Ctenopoma, Malpulutta and Sendelia.

This is part of the suborder Characidae family, which in turn belongs to the order Cypriniformes. Characidae family comes from the fresh waters of Africa, South America and central and southern US What has this specific family adipose fin it is one that resembles salmonids. He was related to carp, which are distinguished by the fin, the lack whiskers and through a well-developed teeth. Most species have small teeth, different both in form and material of which are formed.

The origin of this family is very old, dating from before the separation of the continents. It is a family that includes over 800 species of fish, shapes, colors and very different behavior, covering large geographic areas, tropical and subtropical, and temperate avoiding cold spots. So spreading Cichlidae family covers Africa, isolated areas of Asia Minor coasts of southern India, Sri Lanka, South and Central America.

In general, in our family is believed to improperly called "Sanitary" consists of inferior fish, with claims of reduced food and water. Most aquarists, some, have the false impression that these fish feed on food scraps left over from others. This is a false impression, their food needs are at least in other fish, if not higher. It is true that they are used as complementary fish, besides others that are more colorful, more mobile and more famous.