Mozambique mouth-breeder, Mozambique mouthbrooder, Mozambique tilapia
Oreochromis mossambicus (Mozambique Tilapia) is native to eastward-flowing rivers of southern Africa from the lower Zambezi and Shire Rivers to Algoa Bay, South Africa. It occurs in blind estuaries and coastal lakes in southern Africa, but is usually rare in open seawater (Courtenay et al. 1986; Froese and Pauly 2014). Oreochromis mossambicus has been widely reared for aquaculture, the aquarium industry, used for aquatic weed control, and as bait for the tuna fishery, and has been widely released in many tropical and subtropical regions, including coastal water and estuaries of the Atlantic Pacific, and Indian Oceans (Brock 1960; Courtenay et al. 1984; Courtenay et al. 1986; Lever 1996). Most of the populations worldwide come from a few individuals collected in Java, Indonesia in 1938 or 1939. It is not known how these fish came to Java, but they were cultured and widely introduced for mosquito control in Asia, and worldwide, after World War II (Lever 1996). Most of the introduced stocks in California are hybrids of the Java strain with O. urolepis (Wami Tilapia), native to the Wami River basin, Tanzania (Lever 1996; Costa-Pierce 2003).
Ironically, given this species' global invasion, the native population is genetically considered endangered by the IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature) due to hybridzation with introduced Nile Tilapia (O. niloticus) (Firmat et al. 2013)