RSS Facebook Twitter YouTube




Archive for May 2013

What can be done to protect freshwater biodiversity?

May 30th, 2013 — 7:55pm

© Rune Evjeberg

Maintaining what remains of freshwater biodiversity is set to become one of the planet’s biggest challenges in the coming decades with up to 50 % of global wetlands already lost in the last century and habitat degradation continuing at an alarming rate. Continue reading »

Category: Conservation, News | Tags: , , , , , | One comment »

Amazonas subscriptions up for grabs!

May 29th, 2013 — 8:57am

We’re always striving to improve SF, and as such would like to invite you to complete our first ever user survey, giving us a few details about your habits and preferences which will enable us to decide what to prioritise over the next few months.

What’s more, if you can find 5 minutes to help us out you could win a subscription to the rather wonderful ‘Amazonas‘ magazine, of which we have three to give away!

For us this is the world’s finest in terms of freshwater fishkeeping. It’s been well-known in Germany for a number of years but an English version has been launched recently and our winners will receive their prize in both print and digital formats.

For a chance to win a year’s subscription please be sure to enter your email address (optional) at the end of the survey.

The survey is quite short and should be a relatively painless  experience – all you have to do is follow the link below and fill it in by 1800 GMT on Friday 7th June, after which three winners will be picked at random:


Many thanks in advance, we look forward to receiving your feedback and will publish the results after the aforementioned date!

The SF Team

Category: Feedback, SF Announcements | Tags: , , , | Comment »

Melon barb renamed…again?

May 14th, 2013 — 4:24pm

H. fasciata exists in a number of colour forms © Hayath

Regular readers will remember that the species formerly known as Puntius fasciatus plus its closest relatives were placed into the new genus Dravidia a few months ago as part of Continue reading »

Category: Ichthyology, News | Tags: , , , , | Comment »

Desperate search for Ptychochromis insolitus

May 10th, 2013 — 6:02pm

The Zoological Society of London (ZSL) is desperately seeking a female specimen or specimens of the Malagasy cichlid Ptychochromis insolitus to pair with the last two remaining males being maintained at London Zoo Aquarium.

The species was described by Stiassny and Sparks in 2006 and was previously known by the names Ptychochromis sp. ‘Mangarahara’, P. sp. ‘Mandritsara’, and P. sp. ‘Sofia’ as well as being misidentified as the congener P. oligacanthus in the more-distant past.

P. insolitus is endemic to the Sofia river drainage in northeastern Madagascar where it’s only been collected from the Mangarahara and Amboaboa tributary systems near the town of  Mandritsari.

The specific name insolitus is a Latin word meaning ‘unusual, odd, queer’ and was chosen in reference to this species’ somewhat unconventional appearance compared with other members of its genus from which it differs in possessing a reduced number of precaudal vertebrae (12 vs. 13–14 in congeners), a reduced number of infraorbital elements (five vs. six or seven in congeners), presence of a faint midlateral stripe, beginning just posterior to the dorsocaudal margin of the opercle and extending to the caudal-fin origin.

It also possesses strongly ctenoid scales, a character shared only with P. inornatus.

Unfortunately much of the species’ natural habitat has undergone extensive degradation via deforestation, dam construction, introduced exotic species and fishing with water levels drastically low, and wild populations may already have disappeared.

The Curator of the Aquarium at ZSL London Zoo, Brian Zimmerman, along with colleagues at Zurich Zoo in Switzerland has been trying to find other specimens in zoos around the world using international zoo and aquarium associations to reach as many experts and aquarists as possible, but so far they’ve had no luck finding females.

The team are now launching a desperate appeal for private aquarium owners, fish collectors and hobbyists to come forward if they have or know of any females in existence, so that a vital conservation breeding programme can be started for the species.

Mr. Zimmermann said: “The Mangarahara cichlid is shockingly and devastatingly facing extinction; its wild habitat no longer exists and as far as we can tell, only three males remain of this entire species.

“It might be too late for their wild counterparts, but if we can find a female, it’s not too late for the species. Here at ZSL London Zoo we have two healthy males, as well as the facilities and expertise to make a real difference.

“We are urgently appealing to anyone who owns or knows someone who may own these critically endangered fish, which are silver in colour with an orange-tipped tail, so that we can start a breeding programme here at the Zoo to bring them back from the brink of extinction.”

ZSL London Zoo is asking anyone with information about the cichlids to email the team at [email protected]

Category: Blogs, Conservation | 3 comments »

Second Nematocharax species described

May 2nd, 2013 — 8:01pm

© W. J. E. M. Costa

A new member of the genus Nematocharax from Bahia state, eastern Brazil is just the second member of the genus known to date. Continue reading »

Category: New Species, News | Tags: , , , | Comment »

Back to top