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Garra rufa (HECKEL, 1843)

Doctor Fish

October 21st, 2014 — 5:32pm

Fish referred to as G. rufa are marketed worldwide as ‘doctor fish’, with the questionable ability to remove dead and scaly skin and ease complaints such as psoriasis. These fish are quite commonly available in the aquarium trade as well, although in both cases it is unclear whether they represent G. rufa or another, related species.

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Aphanius arakensis TEIMORI, ESMAEILI, GHOLAMI, ZAREI, & REICHENBACHER, 2012

Arak Tooth Carp

September 14th, 2012 — 10:13am

This species was available in the aquarium hobby for a number of years prior to publication of the official description and was generally referred to as A. sp. ‘Namak’ or A. sp. ‘Namak River’.

It can be distinguished from other members of the genus by the following combination of characters: 10–12 anal-fin rays; 28–32 lateral line scales, 10–13 caudal peduncle scales; 8–10 gill rakers; 12–19, commonly 1…

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Aphanius vladykovi COAD, 1988

March 13th, 2012 — 1:24pm

The Iranian Plateau is home to a diverse group of Aphanius with four species already described and several awaiting description. These are among the most ancient in the genus having divereged away from a common ancestor around 20 – 24 million years ago. Among them this species is most closely related to A. sophiae from the Kor River system but can be distinguished by differences in patterning. Males of A. sophiae lack the characteristic darkcolouration seen in A. vladykovi and females possess a …

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Aphanius mento (HECKEL, 1843)

March 13th, 2012 — 1:24pm

This species has something of a confused history having been previously been considered synonymous with both A. sophiae (a separate species native to Iraq and Iran) and A. cypris (currently considered a junior synonym of A. mento). Although some populations occur close to and even sympatric with other members of the genus in Turkey phylogenetic studies have shown it to be more closely-related to the Middle Eastern species A. dispar dispar, A. d. richardsoni, A. ginaonis and A. sirhani. It's…

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Aphanius farsicus TEIMORI, ESMAEILI & REICHENBACHER, 2011

March 13th, 2012 — 1:24pm

This species is still sometimes listed as a species of Lebias by some sources although that name has long been considered a synonym of Cyprinodon by most authorities and an ICZN committee voted to suppress the name in favour of Aphanius as recently as 2003.

It was known as A. persicus until late 2011 when it was reclassified due to that name being preoccupied by a Late Miocene fossil species previously referred to as Brachylebias persicus Priem 1908. This change was necessary because Gau…

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Aphanius dispar (RÜPPELL, 1829)

March 13th, 2012 — 1:24pm

A. dispar should only be considered a nominal species as demonstrated by Hrbek and Meyer (2003) who conducted an in-depth phylogenetic study covering the majority of the genus. It was found to represent a paraphyletic grouping meaning it cannot be considered to be a species following the phylogenetic species concept. A. mento, A. sirhani and especially A. ginaonis and A. richardsoni were found to be its closest surviving relatives. Hoedeman (1951) suggested that it should be moved into a separat…

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Xiphophorus hellerii HECKEL, 1848

Green Swordtail

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

Wild swordtails are a fairly basic green colur. However the vast majority of swordtails available in the hobby today are hybrids of X.helleri with X.maculatus or X.variatus. There are a huge number of selectively-bred varieties available, including wagtail, lyretail, tuxedo, albino, neon, red, green and hi-fin.

Swordtails may undergo what appears to be a change in sex. In young fish this may simply be late development. However some adult females develop male characteristics which is thought …

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Channa gachua (HAMILTON, 1822)

Dwarf Snakehead

March 13th, 2012 — 1:18pm

Generally considered to have an enormous natural range extending from Iran to Taiwan and Bali, with records existing from Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nepal, India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Singapore.

However there exists significant evidence to suggest that C. gachua as currently understood represents a complex of similar-looking species, and a taxonomic review of the group is clearly required.

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