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The Obscure Loaches Of North India

Home Forums Fresh and Brackish Water Fishes The Obscure Loaches Of North India

This topic contains 0 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  Matt 2 years, 5 months ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 55 total)
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  • #303522

    Shovelnose
    Member

    First post here,plaayle directed me here a few days back. I am from India and am interested in Indian native fish, primarily catfish,loaches and the large silver barbs (Andy Rushworth would be so proud of me for saying that Wink).

     

    I spent a couple of years in the north Indian state of Uttarakhand and collected quite a few loaches most of which could not be ID’ed down to species level. Thought you guys might like to take a look at them. I am no photography whiz and being in the field and trying to take photos of the fish at the same time certainly didn’t help as will be evident with the pictures below.

     

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-cZ5j6qWQXtA/UuslxvcjZ1I/AAAAAAAAMQk/GckkE_LhjVk/s640/DSCN2475.JPG

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-pCm1aXrnPWw/UwIWm6GHSxI/AAAAAAAAMY8/6W-em0T0P2Q/s640/DSCN2568.JPG

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-fegxizljPbo/UwIZ7zpzpEI/AAAAAAAAMbU/NRuJMHiC57E/s640/DSCN2614.JPG

    https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-skSqFGbxdrQ/UwIZ0kvmYYI/AAAAAAAAMbM/rz-1BsMrYgc/s640/DSCN2612.JPG

    https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-p79gGklyb_o/VMNFFfYu1YI/AAAAAAAAOTo/Vygn19ULKVc/s640/DSC_0076.JPG

    https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-7THylyMA5Ww/VGlm8XUViII/AAAAAAAAOOU/iQN5whMvKvA/s640/obliquofasciata%2520%25281%2529.JPG

     

    To start with, Schistura obliquofascia. These were among the largest Schistura I have ever collected (that photo tank is 4 inches in length).

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-_kC86TWVsGw/Uk-HxHiBGVI/AAAAAAAALJU/WmToCV7JezA/s640/DSC_0027.JPG

    https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-eHYAGk45x8s/UwIXF8lWa0I/AAAAAAAAMZU/w1jBeao_8SI/s640/DSCN2571.JPG

    Habitat.

    #354045

    Plaamoo
    Participant

    Welcome shovelnose, glad you made it! I’m plaamoo here, Jim everywhere :).

    Great field photos! I especially like the heavily striped schistura. And habitat shots are always nice. Any pics of those ” large silver barbs”? Thanks for sharing!

    #354047

    Shovelnose
    Member

    @plaamoo said:
    Any pics of those ” large silver barbs”? Thanks for sharing!

    For starters, Chagunius chagunio.

    https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-sih3T-FzjYI/UnMvy9yZLWI/AAAAAAAALZE/V0wKT0GFW1A/s640/DSCN2087.JPG

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-4kW-5Rdxw2k/UnMvtikbc3I/AAAAAAAALY0/EnghqhroadE/s640/DSCN2086.JPG

    In life.

    https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-FBW49jnKOek/U-eHgFsbFWI/AAAAAAAANBA/XdRhg8JWWlE/s640/DSCN2981.JPG

    Dead and “fresh”

    https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-WUspNxsZmvA/Un3VXnLAsKI/AAAAAAAALgU/3vkBy1tqvjY/s640/Chagunius%2520cf%2520chagunio%2520%252810%2529.JPG

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-k7iplNNC1Wg/Un3Vqc5axuI/AAAAAAAALgo/OyQqbsCmqiI/s640/Chagunius%2520cf%2520chagunio%2520%252811%2529.JPG

    Long preserved.

    #354053

    Matt
    Keymaster

    Wonderful photos and welcome to the site shovelnose! Is that a flood barrage or some kind of hydroelectric installation we can see in the first habitat shot?

    #354054

    Shovelnose
    Member

    Yup, that is indeed a barrage situated at the base of the Kumaoun Himalayas in Kathgodam. Collecting C.chagunio in winter was quite an experience as the most cracking specimens usually turned up. Imagine a 6 inch Chagunius with a purple snout covered in tubercles! 

     

    I had gone to Himachal Pradesh last year to try and collect Schistura rupecola. While I did collect a species of Schistura fairly close to the type locality, I am not completely sure this is the real thing.

    https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-zh5sUVN9tuk/VFHBaVrXdxI/AAAAAAAANyk/izkpsnVknnU/s640/HK%2520026.jpg

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-7CnoscNWTsA/VFHDmuyVwsI/AAAAAAAANzY/PFyCvSTeCks/s640/HK%2520034.jpg

    https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-FcpMa_80ivQ/VFHBiaGwBYI/AAAAAAAANyw/swisJ2o-ZQ0/s640/HK%2520028.jpg

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-NQTeKvUmj6U/VFHCv_RcvEI/AAAAAAAANzQ/bmWgTn3BQOE/s640/HK%2520031.jpg

    The colours have actually faded quite a bit, the fins were stunningly red when collected (especially on the larger specimens).

     

    The habitat.

    https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-_25S4toE-4Q/VFHG6srMhJI/AAAAAAAAN1o/JmHuMiqSqxI/s640/HK%2520059.jpg

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-CavPQzH3wHs/VFHGe9b0pHI/AAAAAAAAN1E/vp6ebXiRS98/s640/HK%2520054.jpg

    https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-4Hg_5ztJIDc/VFHHGrvoTCI/AAAAAAAAN14/Y87Pg3v-FXw/s640/HK%2520061.jpg

    Opinions???

    #354055

    Matt
    Keymaster

    @shovelnose said:
    Yup, that is indeed a barrage situated at the base of the Kumaoun Himalayas in Kathgodam.

    Are fishes able to pass these Shovelnose?

    Collecting C.chagunio in winter was quite an experience as the most cracking specimens usually turned up. Imagine a 6 inch Chagunius with a purple snout covered in tubercles! 

    Sounds wonderful!!

    I had gone to Himachal Pradesh last year to try and collect Schistura rupecola. While I did collect a species of Schistura fairly close to the type locality, I am not completely sure this is the real thing.

    The current valid name should be S. rupecula, but I think that your fish might be something else. McClelland clearly depicts the species with quite regular, solid bars on the flanks and describes its colour pattern as “about fourteen broad bars on either side, and three across the caudal and dorsal”.

    Below are the drawing from McClelland’s description, plus an image of S. rupecula from the Kosi system in Nepal published in Kottelat (2012). Much further away from the type locality but the specimen matches the original description quite closely. See what you think. :)

    Schistura-rupecula-McClelland.jpg

    Schistura-rupecula-Conway.jpg

    #354061

    Shovelnose
    Member

    “Matt said:
    Are fishes able to pass these Shovelnose?

     

    Yup, species collected from this river (Gola River) included Garra spp., Schistura obliquofascia, Glyptothorax sp. Tor chelynoides, Tor cf. tor, Schizothorax cf. kumaonensis, Barilius cf. bendelesis, and a few more unidentified loaches and Barilius. The only notable difference was that larger specimens of Glyptothorax were found above the barrage while smaller ones were below and vice versa for Tor.

     

    “Matt said:

    The current valid name should be S. rupecula, but I think that your fish might be something else. McClelland clearly depicts the species with quite regular, solid bars on the flanks and describes its colour pattern as “about fourteen broad bars on either side, and three across the caudal and dorsal”.

    Below are the drawing from McClelland’s description, plus an image of S. rupecula from the Kosi system in Nepal published in Kottelat (2012). Much further away from the type locality but the specimen matches the original description quite closely. See what you think. :)

    Schistura obliquofascia was also described with around 14 bars and is much closer to the type locality. See what you think. Cool   My opinion (which doesn’t mean squat of course) is that specimens from the type locality are best suited to clear any confusion about that particular species. 

    Coming back to the Schistura at hand, there is a good possibility that it could be S.montana (type locality is Shimla again) but I am unable to trace the OD on my laptop. Do you have it Matt???

    #354062

    joyban
    Participant

    Hi 

    Most likely a Schistura montana, McClelland [J.] 1838:947, Pl. 55 (fig. 1) [Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal v. 7 (for Nov. 1838); ] Mountain streams of Simla, India.

     

    Current status: Valid as Schistura montana McClelland 1838. Nemacheilidae

    Gen. Schistura, J. M.

    Species, S. montana, J. M. PI. LV. f. 1.
    Depth of the body to its length as about one to eight, six cirri and a single suborbitar spine under each eye, a black streak at the base of the caudal, and about twelve broad streaks crossing the body ; with one row of black dots crossing the dorsal rays, and a faint row crossing those of the caudal. Pectorals and ventrals long and lanceolate. The fin rays are D. 8 : P. 10 : V. 8 : A. 6 : C. 18. Habitat, mountain streams at Simla*. Length two and half inches. 

    * Found by Dr. MacLoed

    Schistura-montana-McClelland.png

    See Reference at :- http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/40004809

     

    As per Menon :-

    (Menon, A. G. K.   1987 (May) The fauna of India and the adjacent countries. Pisces. Vol. IV. Teleostei – Cobitoidea. Part 1. Homalopteridae. Zoological Survey of India. Page 78-82, Fig. 6 & 7, PI. 11

    Colour: 10-12 black vertical bands, broader than interspaces,encircling body; bands anterior to dorsal fin break up into numerous narrow bands in bigger specimens. Caudal with a black band at its base and a bar across each lobe. Dorsal with a black base and a black blotch at base of its first few rays; a dark bar across its centre.

    Size: Largest specimen examined 59 mm SL.

    Schistura-montana-AKG-Menon.png

    and for S. rupecula, J. M. PI. LV. f. 3, a. b. 

    About fourteen broad bars on either side, and three across the caudal and dorsal ; without suborbitar spines, six cirri, four in front, and one at each corner of the mouth. The third ray from the upper and lower margins of the caudal a little longer than the outer ones. Lower surface of the body and head nearly flat, pectorals and ventrals lanceolate.

    The fin rays are D. 8 : P. 10: V. 8 : A. 7 : C. 16. Habitat, mountain streams at Simla. Length two inches.

    So this fish is not a Schistura rupecula.

    An other picture of Schistura rupecula  for reference :-

    Schistura-rupecula.png

    Sujoy

    #354063

    Shovelnose
    Member

    Matches pretty well, S.montana it is then.

    Now the next one should be a real puzzler. This was the only specimen I came across in my entire stay in that region and that too just after the monsoons. There were severe floods in the region and I guess this specimen was washed down from somewhere. From the Ganges Basin in Uttar Pradesh, 

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-NPUvBEf8aqA/U_IPEhgcGlI/AAAAAAAANVc/-cUbNx_uIk0/s640/DSCN3221.JPG

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-skBtfsXShSk/U_IPOs-4xRI/AAAAAAAANVs/j7i4W2lgEUU/s640/DSCN3223.JPG

    https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-trSlWybjGlY/U_IPibU2AoI/AAAAAAAANWE/lUTPMf_HjG8/s640/DSCN3226.JPG

    https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-M2SVH_eDO2E/U_IPY28O6oI/AAAAAAAANV8/ik9EN5sP3HE/s640/DSCN3225.JPG

     

    Is this Pangio pangia??? This is stress colouration, it was blood red when collected and yes, I know the photography is remarkably lousy. Wink

    #354064

    Thomas
    Member

    IIRC P. pangia has a rounded caudal fin. Looks like the Pangio on your pic hasn’t a rounded caudal?

    Cheers,

    Thomas

    #354069

    Matt
    Keymaster

    Shovelnose said Schistura obliquofascia was also described with around 14 bars and is much closer to the type locality. See what you think. Cool My opinion (which doesn’t mean squat of course) is that specimens from the type locality are best suited to clear any confusion about that particular species. 

    Agree totally, which is why I stopped short of making any statement. Great post by Joyban!

    Very cute Pangio – is it a first record for the genus in this part of the Ganges basin?

    #354070

    Shovelnose
    Member

    “Thomas said:
    IIRC P. pangia has a rounded caudal fin. Looks like the Pangio on your pic hasn’t a rounded caudal?

    I think the caudal fin is rounded on this specimen.

     

    “Matt said:
     Very cute Pangio – is it a first record for the genus in this part of the Ganges basin? 

    No actually, the paper in the link below had reported it back in 2012. The collection locality of this specimen was only a few 100 kms east to the locality mentioned in the paper.

    http://www.upsbdb.org/pdf/2013/reserch_publications/4-2.pdf 

    #354077

    Shovelnose
    Member

    This is an undescribed Balitora in my opinion but I am open to ID’s if any are possible.

     

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-vfrbUnXvPC8/U-eSFaEgFFI/AAAAAAAANG8/hDiGdzc-i0w/s640/DSCN3051.JPG

    https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-Sm4_uZiqhCE/U-eTNpigFgI/AAAAAAAANHY/N_TaLrHRRGk/s640/DSCN3054.JPG

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-g97MWLUoVFE/U-eTN-I25JI/AAAAAAAANHc/RTdYFMAUXk0/s640/DSCN3055.JPG

    https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-Rd4294W23ww/U-eTVeQqlkI/AAAAAAAANHk/IxuOxWxSiRs/s640/DSCN3057.JPG

    https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-o42l1EMHkwo/U-eSNvL1_TI/AAAAAAAANHE/8FCQeSdOAII/s640/DSCN3052.JPG

    https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-zKBqNsluKR0/U-eUO5aMiEI/AAAAAAAANHs/eFAcxfJHJUI/s640/DSCN3058.JPG

    https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-AmMOt-FNHUU/Uwtb4dQnweI/AAAAAAAAMgA/GS5mWAv0h2k/s640/DSCN2669.JPG

     

    From the Ganges Drainage in Uttar Pradesh.

    #354084

    joyban
    Participant

    The Pangio is Pangio pangia.

    Initially described as Cobitis pangia, Hamilton [F.] 1822:355, 394 [An account of the fishes found in the river Ganges] Northeastern Bengal.

    Current status: Valid as Pangio pangia (Hamilton 1822). Cobitidae: Cobitinae. Distribution: Asia: Nepal, India, Bangladesh and Myanmar. Habitat: freshwater.

    Pangio-pangia-Hamilton.png

     Pangio-pangia.png

    Colour in alcohol. Based on RM 47971, uniform light to reddish brown with out any markings,paler towards ventral surface.

    In the paper “A review of the eel-loaches, genus Pangio, from Myanmar (Teleostei: Cypriniformes: Cobitidae)” by Ralf Britz and James Maclaine – lchthyol. Explor. Freshwaters, Vol. 18, No. 1, pp. 17-30, 8 figs., 2 tabs., March 2007 © 2007 by Verlag Dr. Friedrich Pfeil, Munchen, Germany- ISSN 0936-9902 in the Remarks section on page 25 under description of Pangio pangia (Hamilton), the Author’s have mentioned

    “Only around one third of the species described by Hamilton (1822) were illustrated by drawings accompanying the text and an illustration of Cobitis pangia was not included . The history of Hamilton’s illustrations has been summarized by Hora (1929), who also noted that Hamilton’s original illustration of C.pangia was subsequently published by M.Clelland (1839) and is reproduced here as Figure 6. Due to the lack of Indian specimens we cannot comment on any differences between our Myanmar material of P. pangia and topotypic or other Indian material. There is considerable variation in vertebral counts among our samples from Myanmar, but we feel that, except for the Indawgyi area, samples are too small , and many of them too poorly preserved for a more detailed analysis of their taxonomic status.”

    So clearly the different species of Pangio refereed in the older works by Hamilton etc might have included the other Myanmar species which were initially all grouped under as Cobitis pangia, Hamilton which is now valid as Pangio pangia (Hamilton 1822).

    The speciese from Myanmar as described in the paper are as : Pangio elongata, Pangio fusca, Pangio lumbriciformis , Pangio pangia, Pangio signicauda

    The list of species of Pangio from India are as :-

    1. Pangio apoda Britz & Maclaine 2007. Cobitidae: Cobitinae. Distribution: Tista drainage, western Bengal, India. Habitat: freshwater.

    2. Pangio pangia (Hamilton 1822). Cobitidae: Cobitinae. Distribution: Asia: Nepal, India, Bangladesh and Myanmar. Habitat: freshwater.

    3. Pangio goaensis (Tilak 1972). Cobitidae: Cobitinae. Distribution: India. Habitat: freshwater.

    4. Pangio ammophila Britz, Ali & Raghavan 2012. Cobitidae: Cobitinae. Distribution: Kumaradhara River, southern West Ghats, India. Habitat: freshwater.

    5. Pangio longipinnis (Menon 1992) Kharangpat Lake, 20 kilometers south of Imphal, Manipur, India. Holotype (unique): SRS/ZSI 3371 is currrently Valid as Lepidocephalichthys longipinnis (Menon 1992). Cobitidae: Cobitinae. Distribution: India. Habitat: freshwater.

    Out of which Pangio apoda (Britz & Maclaine 2007) and  Pangio pangia (Hamilton 1822) are from Northern India rather Pangio apoda (Britz & Maclaine 2007) is only found in Northern West Bengal.

    Pangio-apoda.png

    Pangio apoda (Britz & Maclaine 2007)  colour in alcohol:-  Uniform light to red dish brown without any markings.

    Distribution. Restricted to the Tista drainage in Western Bengal.

    In there Remarks Britz & Maclaine 2007 have stated “ BMNH 1932.4.22.1 from the ‘Sevoke stream, Darjeeling’ came to the BMNH via the Indian Museum and is most likely from the collection that Hora (1930) reported on. He found Pangio with and without pelvics among his samples from the same locality. The 18 pelvic-less specimens were caught .. from debris at the bottom of pools in the course of the stream”, but the two having pelvic fins were ·’obtained from among pebbles and shingle in a swift current .. (Hora,1930: 435). Hora also noted additional constant morphological differences between his two forms, but concluded that rather than an aberration, as he claimed previously (Hora, 1921), they were just a ‘habitat variety” of Pangio pangia. The plain brown colouration and the low vertebral count assign Pangio apoda to the oblonga species group of Kottelat & Lim (1993).

    Actually SL Hora’s in “Animal Plasticity and Environment” Nature 126, 435-436 (20 September 1930) | doi:10.1038/126435a0 mentions:-

    “WHILE recently making a zoological collection in the Sevoke River in the Teesta Valley at the base of the Darjiling Himalayas, I observed remarkable differences between the individuals of a Cobitid fish, Acanthophthalmus pangia (H. B.), collected from two diverse ‘niches’ in the same habitat. In Fig. 1 are shown the two types of individuals. The chief difference, which is readily noticeable in the two drawings, is that in the lower drawing the ventral fins are present, while in the upper these structures are totally absent. There are also other differences of a minor nature; for example, the extent of the nasal flap and the form of the caudal fin. Two specimens possessing ventral fins were obtained from among pebbles and shingle in a swift current, whereas 18 examples devoid of ventral fins were netted from among debris at the bottom of pools in the course of the stream.”  –

    Pangio-pangia-apoda-Hora-Britz-.png

     

    These are actually two different species one Pangio apoda (Britz & Maclaine 2007)  and the other  Pangio pangia (Hamilton 1822).

    pangiaMenon1.png

     pangiaMenon2.png

    Fig 2 Pangio pangia [Acauthophthalmus pangia (Ham.)] Manipur: 2,ZSI F 4303/2, Imphal river, Coll. A.G.K. Menon and party, 20.2.1953. Colour Brownish Yellow with out any marking.

    Now this probably could be an another variant of Pangio apoda or the Pangio apoda from Manipur Imphal river as well ?

    Shrestha, T. K.  2008 Ichthyology of Nepal. A study of fishes of the Himalayan waters. Himalayan Ecosphere, Kathmandu, Nepal. 389 pp., 72 pls. Also reports of Pangio pangia from Nepal Page 139 Plate 35 

    So going by these occurrence and description records one can say that the Pangio sp. in question can possible be Pangio pangia (Hamilton 1822).

    #354089

    Matt
    Keymaster

    Cheers for the link Shovelnose, and superb post again Sujoy. P. pangia does seem to have an awfully wide distribution for a member of this genus?

    The Balitora is lovely – presumably the smaller fish in the photo aquarium are juveniles of the same?

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