Tag Archive: freshwater fishes

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Tetraodontiformes (Puffers and filefishes)
Family: Tetraodontidae (Puffers)

Genus/species: Carinotetraodon travancoricus

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Both sexes are primarily yellow with dark green to black iridescent patches on the flanks and dorsal surface. Males can also have a dark stripe down the center of their pale belly and iridescent “eye wrinkle” patterns that females do not have. Females are more rounded, tend to be a bit larger than males, and may or may not show more smallish spots between their larger dark markings.
Length up to 2.5 cm (one inch)

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: C. travancoricus  are found in freshwater rivers of Asia and India. Endemic to the Western Ghats of India

DIET IN THE WILD: The diet of dwarf pufferfish in the wild has not been reported, but other members of the genus feed on zooplankton and various benthic crustaceans and molluscs.


REPRODUCTION: Eggs are deposited and hidden in vegetation.

Results from habitat modifications caused by deforestation and conversion of lands in agricultural areas, increasing urbanization, and over harvesting for the pet trade.


California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Water is life feeding

Ron’s flickr  https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/24236155053/in/album-72157662094208792/

fishbase www.fishbase.org/summary/Carinotetraodon-travancoricus.html

EOL www.eol.org/pages/222209/details

IUCN  www.iucnredlist.org/details/links/166591/0

Arkive www.arkive.org/malabar-pufferfish/carinotetraodon-travanc…

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1Jg




Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Sarcopterygii (lobe-finned fishes)
Order: Ceratodontiformes (Australian lungfishes)
Family: Ceratodontidae (Australian lungfish)

Genus/species: Neoceratodus forsteri

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: The brown or olive-brown body is covered with large, bony, overlapping scales. There is some whitish colour on the belly and underside of the head. The dorsal fin originating on the middle of the back is confluent with the caudal and anal fins. The pectoral fins are large and flipper-like just behind the head; the pelvic fins are also flipper-like, situated far back on the body.

3192737183_3ab00093a7_oLength up to nearly 2 m (6 feet)

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Queensland, Australia in rivers with low flow in the austral summer, then restricted to pools that remain. During period of drought, it can tolerate stagnant conditions by breathing air, surfacing 1-2 times per hour; however, it lacks the ability to survive dry spells by aestivation; it is a facultative air-breather that will die if forced to depend on air-breathing.



DIET IN THE WILD: Omnivorous. They use large, crushing teeth on the palate and lower jaw to feed on frogs, tadpoles, fishes, shrimp, earthworms, snails, aquatic plants and native fruits fallen from trees overhanging the creeks. It uses its electroreceptors on its head to pick up hidden mollusks, worms or crustaceans.

REPRODUCTION: First breeds at around 15 years of age in males and 20 years in females. Juveniles are vulnerable to predatory insect larvae, shrimps, fish and wood ducks. Adults have few or no natural predators

MORTALITY/LONGEVITY: Live to more than 65 years in captivity. Some individuals may live to 100 years. It is protected by law.

REMARKS: It is one of six extant representatives of the ancient air-breathing Dipnoi (lungfishes) that flourished during the Devonian period (about 413–365 million years ago) and is the most primitive surviving member of this lineage.

The oldest specimen at the California Academy of Sciences (“Methusela”) arrived from the Melbourne Zoo in 1938. It was half its current size at the time. This species most resembles lungfish fossil forms.

Unlike the African lungfish, this species cannot survive dry spells through estivation. Although the lung supplements the gills during times of oxygen stress, it cannot survive solely by breathing air. The Australian lungfish has only a single lung; the other two lungfish species have paired lungs.


California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Water is life

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/2996214117/in/album-72157662094208792/

Fishbase  fishbase.org/summary/4512

ADW animaldiversity.org/accounts/Neoceratodus_forsteri/classi…

EOL eol.org/pages/339109/details

Australian Government  www.environment.gov.au/cgi-bin/sprat/public/publicspecies…

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1J0


Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Cyprinodontiformes (Rivulines, killifishes and live bearers)                                                                                        Family: Poeciliidae

Genus/species: Alafro cultratus

Alafro cultratus16167676782_36fa409f32_k


DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Central America: Costa Rica, Panama and Nicaragua. Found in rapidly flowing rainforest streams.

DIET IN THE WILD: Insectivorous, aquatic and terrestrial insects.

REPRODUCTION: Internal live bearers. Gestation lasts for about 24 days. Produces 10 to 30, rarely more, young.



fishbase www.fishbase.gr/summary/46449

Encyclopedia of Life eol.org/pages/1157656/hierarchy_entries/44712641/details

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/16167676782/in/set-72157620708938680

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1tM

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Chondrichthyes (cartilaginous fishes)
Subclass: Elasmobranchii (sharks, rays and skates)
Order: Myliobatiformes
Family: Potamotrygonidae (river stingrays)

Genus/species: Potamotrygon motoro

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Oval disc, with a greyish-brown upper surface patterned with distinct yellow-orange spots, and a white underside. Like most rays, flat teeth are used to grip and crush prey that is sucked into the ventral mouth. Note periscoping eyes which protrude from sand when buried. Olfaction is a major and well-developed means of perception for these stingrays; their olfactory organs are situated in laterally placed cartilaginous capsules on the top of the head. The spine on the tip of the tail is capable of delivering a painful sting.
Length up to 1 m (3 ft.) and weight to 15 kg (33 lb.).

Potamotrygon motoro3407966512_7f4218b0a0_b

DISTRIBUTION: South America: Uruguay, Paraná- Paraguay, Orinoco, and Amazon Basins.

HABITAT: Found in freshwater calm waters, especially on the sandy margins of lagoons, brooks and streams. Able to tolerate only a narrow range of salinities. Lost ability to retain urea decreasing osmolarity for fresh water unlike salt water relatives.

DIET: Mostly benthic hard-shelled invertebrates, such as clams, mussels, and crustaceans. Also worms, insect larvae, and small fishes.

REPRODUCTION: Fertilization is internal with the male attaches himself to a female by firmly clamping his jaws onto the posterior margin of her disk, sometimes leaving prominent bite marks. Females produce eggs that hatch inside the female and are then ‘born’ live after a gestation period of no more than three months. The litter size varies, from 3 to 21 young.

LIFESPAN: Maximum of 15 years in captivity.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red list Data Deficient (DD)

Potamotrygon motoro10203193423_b185d566b4_k

REMARKS: One of the seven species of this genus inhabiting southern South America.
Fishermen also harpoon these rays during floods when they are found resting over vegetation in shallow water. P.motoro apparently has delicious meat.


fishbase fishbase.org/summary/Potamotrygon-motoro.html

ARKive  www.arkive.org/ocellate-river-stingray/potamotrygon-motoro/

Encyclopedia of Life eol.org/pages/205366/details

IUCN Red List  www.iucnredlist.org/details/39404/0

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/3407966512/in/album-72157608387905158/

Ron’s WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1tm


Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Cypriniformes (Carps)
Family: Cobitidae (Loaches)  Worm-shaped do not have true scales, and like many other Cypriniformes or catfishes, they have barbels at their mouths. Mouths are small bottom-facing for scavenging benthic lifestyle.

Genus/species: Botia sidthimunki

Dwarf Loach 3729702064_b5d6d9bc65_b

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Max. size: 6 cm (2.4 inches). The smallest loach species. Males and females similar. The back is light brownish to light yellow with longitudinal bands that are connected by smaller bands across the back. Underside is white with a silvery sheen. Adapted to a bottom-dwelling lifestyle typical of most loaches, this species has a downward facing mouth and fleshy barbels for searching bottom gravels and mud for food.

Dwarf Loach  3729701172_60d8ac62eb_b

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Cambodia, Laos, Thailand. Found in small muddy lakes and other standing water habitats. Prefer areas of with bogwood, caves, and aquatic plants.

DIET IN THE WILD: Small aquatic invertebrates and insect larvae; algae.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List Endangered (EN)  Extirpated from most of its range as a result of dam construction in the 1980s and 1990s, as well as overfishing and land conversion for agriculture. It is now only found in Katchanaburi, Thailand.

BO09 Rainforest Borneo Exhibit, Southeast Asia Community 


IUCN Red List www.iucnredlist.org/details/2953/0

fishbase www.fishbase.org/summary/Yasuhikotakia-sidthimunki.html

Encyclopedia of Life eol.org/pages/210821/details

Ron’s flickr  http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/3729701172/in/set-72157627795872023/

Ron’s WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-17o

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Cypriniformes (Carps)
Family: Cyprinidae (Minnows or carps) 

Genus/species: Systomus rhomboocellatus

Snakeskin Barb IMG_7888

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Diamond-shaped markings on their body, giving them a snake-skin appearance. Length 5-8 cm (2-3 inches).

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: West and Central Kalimantan in Borneo, Indonesia in black water streams in forested areas.

DIET IN THE WILD: Omnivorous; eats insects and worms.

REPRODUCTION: Egg scatter within areas of dense plant growth.



fishbase www.fishbase.org/summary/Puntius-rhomboocellatus.html

 Encyclopedia of Life eol.org/pages/224467/details

Ron’s flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/sets/72157608614099673/

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-16F

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Suborder: Anabantoidei, (accessory breathing organ known as the labyrinth organ).
Family: Osphronemidae (Gouramies)

Genus/Species: Macropodus opercularis

Paradisefish IMG_7999

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Common length : 5.5 cm (2 inches). Can reach 10 cm (4 inches). Conspicuous dark brown opercular spot with whitish posterior margin (margin red in life); body with 7-11 bold, dark bars on a light background. Caudal fin forked, both lobes elongate with filamentous extension in each lobe

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Native to East Asia from Korea to Northern Viet Nam. Introduced elsewhere. Air breather preferring, slow-moving or still habitats, ranging from irrigation ditches, rice paddies, streams and stagnant ponds to marshes and the backwaters of major rivers.

DIET IN THE WILD: Omnivore consuming planktonic invertebrates and smaller fish. 

REPRODUCTION: The males build bubble nests . After courtship, the male wraps himself around the female in a nuptial embrace during which he fertilizes eggs released by the female. He then gathers up the eggs in his mouth and blows them into the nest. . The male then tends the eggs until they hatch about 36 hours later.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List; Least concern.  M. opercularis has a large distribution area and there are no known widespread threats to this species.

REMARKS: Used as predators of mosquito larvae and to control Dengue Fever.

These fish are thought to be one of the first fish introduced to Europe as an ornamental fish, in the mid 1800s.

Males must be kept separate from each other in tanks to prevent fighting,

Rainforest Borneo BO09


fishbase  http://www.fishbase.org/summary/Macropodus-opercularis.html

Encyclopedia of Life   http://eol.org/pages/203995/details

Ron’s flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/sets/72157627795872023/

Ron’s WordPress shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-17z


Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Osphronemidae (Gouramies)

Genus/species: Trichogaster trichopterus

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Usually silvery blue in color but their colors can change significantly with their moods, as well as during spawning, when they obtain a much deeper blue hue.The three-spot gourami displays only two spots, one in the center of the body and a second on the caudal peduncle. The eye is actually the third “spot”. T. trichopterus has many different colour forms and varieties, all of which have been selectively bred for the aquarium trade. These are seen much more often than the natural form, which is the blue-grey three spotted fish. They include gold, opaline, cosby, marbled and silver forms. Length to 15 cm (6 inches).

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Southeast Asia: Mekong River basin in Laos, Yunnan, Thailand, Cambodia, and Viet Nam. Preference is thickly vegetated fresh water in ditches, canals, ponds, swamps, rivers or lakes.

DIET IN THE WILD: Omnivore. Eats insects, crustaceans, and zooplankton.

REPRODUCTION and DEVELOPMENT: Typical of gouramis, male builds bubble nest, usually under a large leaf, after which he displays to female. Their courtship ends with her releasing eggs, which the male fertilizes and then collects in his mouth and “spits” into the bubble nest, where he guards them until they hatch in 2–3 days.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List; Least Concern (LC) Abundant to common in suitable habitats throughout its range.

REMARKS: Like all labyrinth fish, the moonlight gourami has a special lung-like organ that allows it to breathe air directly from above the water line. This allows gouramis to survive in pools with a low oxygen.

Processed into salted, dried fish in Java.

LOCATION: BO09 Rainforest Borneo, Southeast Asia Community 


fishbase  www.fishbase.org/summary/Trichopodus-trichopterus.html

Encyclopedia of Life  eol.org/pages/222297/details

Ron’s flickr  http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/6287701586/in/set-72157627795872023

Ron’s WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-dJ

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Cypriniformes
Family: Cyprinidae (Minnows or Carps)

Genus/species: Epalzeorhynchos bicolor

Redtail Black Shark Minnow 4472041343_d9431913da_b

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Deep velvet-black body and bright red caudal fin. Two fleshy projections (barbels) extend from the edges of the mouth Max. length: 15 cm (6 inches).

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Originally from the Mae Klong River in Thailand. Found in the middle and bottom levels of freshwater streams and rivers, especially areas with rocks and/or plants for resting and hiding.

Redtail Black Shark Minnow  5170275837_91ba6445e9_b

DIET IN THE WILD: Omnivorous, primarily a bottom-feeding scavenger.

REPRODUCTION: E. bicolor spawns in rocky caves, and the young hatch after 30 to 60 hours. Four days after hatching, the young are free-swimming, but do not develop the characteristic red tail until seven to ten weeks old.

CONSERVATION: IUCN: Critically Endangered (CR)
Habitat alteration; during the 1970s contributed to its decline. Captive bred in Thailand for aquarium export trade.

LONGEVITY: 5-8 years.

REMARKS: In spite of its common name, most likely a reference to its streamlined, torpedo shape, it is not a shark. Related to carp.

Location: Borneo


fishbase www.fishbase.org/summary/Epalzeorhynchos-bicolor.html

Encyclopedia of life  eol.org/pages/1015624/details

 ARKIVE  http://www.arkive.org/redtailed-black-shark/epalzeorhynchos-bicolor/

Ron’s flickr  http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/sets/72157608614099673/

Ron’s WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-16X

Kingdom: Animalia
Class: Actinopterygii (Ray-finned fishes),
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Cichlidae (Cichlids).

Genus/species: Heros appendiculatus aka Heros efasciatus

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Compressed body is silvery; five black vertical bars punctuate the lower half of its flanks, a sixth extends to its dorsal fin. Length to 14 cm (5.5 inches).

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Amazon River basin to Upper Orinoco River drainage in Colombia and Venezuela. Found in lakes, standing water, or slow moving water with copious vegetation.   

DIET: Fruits, seeds, green algae and detritus.  

REPRODUCTION:  Guarders, clutch tenders. Up to 1000 eggs are deposited on flat stones or on roots; both parents participate in caring for eggs and larvae.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List; Not Evaluated.

Wild type :wild -type olive green

Turquoise severum (Heros appendiculatus)MG_0179


LOCATION: Flooded Amazon Tunnel, AM11


Ron’s WordPress shortlink: http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-9x

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/8358691491/in/set-72157620568438047/

 fishbase  www.fishbase.org/summary/52199

 Encyclopedia of life  eol.org/pages/203885/details



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