The genus Tyrannochromis is part of the Cichlidae family. The genus includes only two species, both native to Lake Malawi. Tyrannochromis are large fish eaters. They have an elongated body, large head, and extremely large mouth.
The genus name Tyrannochromis was given in 1989 in the description of Eccles and Trewavas. The name can be broken into two parts. Tyrannus or Tiran. The description does not explain why this name was chosen. Possibly it is a reference to the size of the species, the large mouth, the diet consisting of fish, and its strategy to outwit fish from an ambush. The second part ‘chromis’ is an ancient name referring to the colorful cichlids, damselfish, and wrasses.