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Britz R.,Natural History Museum in London | Kakkassery F.,Thomas College | Raghavan R.,Conservation Research Group CRG
Ichthyological Exploration of Freshwaters | Year: 2014

Kryptoglanis shajii was recently described from a public well in Kerala, India. Its systematic position among cat- fishes has remained unresolved partly due to lack of morphological information. We present here a detailed osteological description of the skeleton of K. shajii and discuss its unusual skeletal features. Unlike most other catfishes Kryptoglanis has a fifth vertebra that is well-separated from the Weberian complex, a character shared only with the Diplomystidae, Helogenes and with the troglobitic or phreatic ictalurids Trogloglanis, Prietella and Satan. There is no trace of the dorsal fin or its supporting skeleton and the caudal fin skeleton consists of a single hypural plate articulating with five rays. Kryptoglanis has a number of reductive features, which may be interpreted as developmental truncations. It lacks the vomer, metapterygoid, all infraorbital bones except the antorbital, the mesocoracoid, and the pectoral fin spine. The phylogenetic position of Kryptoglanis remains unclear, even though the reduced condition of the palatine may point to a closer relationship with the Siluridae. Our osteological analysis of Kryptoglanis demonstrates that this genus cannot be accommodated into any known catfish family and we therefore propose the new family Kryptoglanidae for it.

Dahanukar N.,Indian Institute of Science | Dahanukar N.,Outreach | Katwate U.,Bombay Natural History Society BNHS | Raghavan R.,Outreach | Raghavan R.,Conservation Research Group CRG
Zootaxa | Year: 2015

Badis britzi, the first species of the genus endemic to southern India, is described from the Nagodi tributary of the west-flowing Sharavati River in Karnataka. It is distinguished from congeners by a combination of characters including a slender body, 21-24 pored lateral-line scales and a striking colour pattern consisting of 11 bars and a mosaic of black and red pigmentation on the side of the body including the end of caudal peduncle, and the absence of cleithral, opercular, or caudal-peduncle blotches, or an ocellus on the caudal-fin base. Badis triocellus Khynriam & Sen is considered a junior synonym of B. singenensis Geetakumari & Kadu. Copyright © 2015 Magnolia Press.

Britz R.,Natural History Museum in London | Ali A.,Conservation Research Group CRG
Zootaxa | Year: 2015

Dario huli, new species, is described from a small tributary stream of the Tunga River in southern Karnataka, India. It can be distinguished from all its congeners except D. urops by the presence of a conspicuous black caudal-fin blotch and by anterior dorsal-fin lappets in males not being produced beyond fin spines. It is readily distinguished from Dario urops by the absence of the horizontal suborbital stripe (vs. presence), the presence of a series of up to eight black bars on the body (vs. 2-3 black bars restricted to caudal peduncle), 25 scales in a lateral row (vs. 28), 3-5 tubed lateral-line scales (vs. tubed lateral-line scales completely absent), 13+13=26 vertebrae (vs. 14+14-15=28-29), and the presence of teeth on hypobran-chial 3 (vs. absence of teeth). Copyright © 2015 Magnolia Press.

Pinder A.C.,East Stoke River Laboratory | Pinder A.C.,Bournemouth University | Raghavan R.,East Stoke River Laboratory | Raghavan R.,Conservation Research Group CRG | And 2 more authors.
Endangered Species Research | Year: 2015

The Western Ghats region of India is an area of exceptional freshwater biodiversity and endemism. Mahseer of the genus Tor are considered prized sport fishes of great cultural significance; nevertheless, they are threatened as a result of increasing anthropogenic stressors. In the River Cauvery, the mahseer community comprises a 'blue-finned' and an orange-finned, 'hump-backed' fish. Whilst it is not yet known whether these are distinct species or 2 different phenotypes, evidence suggests that the hump-backed phenotype is endemic to the river, whereas the blue-finned phenotype was introduced in the 1980s. Angler-catch data from a managed fishery on the River Cauvery, gathered between 1998 and 2012 and comprising 23 620 h of fishing effort, revealed that captured individuals ranged in size from 0.45 to 46.8 kg, with the blue-finned phenotype comprising 95% of all captured fish and the remainder being hump-backed. The catch per unit effort (CPUE) of the blue-finned phenotype significantly increased over the study period, while the mean weight of individual fish significantly declined. By contrast, the CPUE of the hump-backed phenotype declined significantly over the period, with individual mean weights significantly increasing. These data suggest a recent recruitment collapse in the hump-backed phenotype resulting in an ageing population that may be headed towards extinction. The introduced blue-finned phenotype, however, continues to recruit strongly, suggesting that the mahseer community of the River Cauvery has undergone considerable shifts in the last 30 yr. © The authors 2015.

Britz R.,Natural History Museum in London | Kumar K.,Community Environmental Resource Center | Baby F.,Conservation Research Group CRG
Zootaxa | Year: 2012

Pristolepis rubripinnis, new species, from the Pamba and Chalakudy rivers in Kerala, India, is distinguished from all other species of the genus by its colour pattern, which includes orange-red soft dorsal, soft anal and caudal fins, and a yellow to orange pelvic fin. It differs further from its southern Indian congener P. marginata in having 4 or 5 scales above the lateral line (vs. 3) and 10 scales below it (vs. 9). Copyright © 2012 · Magnolia Press.

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