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Nannostomus grandis ZARSKE, 2011

October 26th, 2012 — 3:42pm

This species is poorly-known in the aquarium hobby but is sometimes exported as bycatch among shipments of other species, especially Nannostomus beckfordi to which it appears quite similar. The easiest way to tell the two apart is that N. grandis lacks pale white or bluish tips to the ventral fins.

It can be further distinguished from all congeners by the following combination of characters: body size up to 46.2 mm, the largest in the genus; bo…

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Nannostomus espei (MEINKEN, 1956)

Barred Pencilfish

October 25th, 2012 — 9:09am

This species is sometimes traded as ‘Espei’s’, ‘four-barred’ or ‘banded’ pencilfish and is sought after in the aquarium hobby, though normally quite expensive to buy.

It’s most-easily identified by its unique colour pattern of 5 dark, vertically-orientated bar-like markings on each flank, this in direct contrast to the horizontal stripes seen in other congeners…

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Nannostomus digrammus (FOWLER, 1913)

Twostripe Pencilfish

October 23rd, 2012 — 1:48pm

Native to the central Amazon basin with records existing from the Madeira, Branco, Trombetas, and Tapajós river drainages, plus the Rupununi basin in Guyana. Although an affluent of the rio Essequibo and thus not officially part of the Amazon basin, the latter is connected to the rio Takutu, a tributary of the upper rio Branco, during the annual wet season.

Type locality is given by Fowler as ‘Rio Madeira about 200 miles east of W. Long. 62°20′, Brazil’.

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Nannostomus anduzei FERNANDEZ & WEITZMAN, 1987

October 18th, 2012 — 4:31pm

This is the smallest member of the genus and rarely traded in numbers, though it’s a relatively common contaminant among shipments of wild fishes from Manaus. Unlike other Nannostomus spp. it does not exhibit a specific colour pattern of spots or bars at night-time, rather displaying an overall paleness.

The family Lebiasinidae is included in the order Characiformes and sometimes split into the nominal subfamilies Lebiasininae a…

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Nannostomus unifasciatus STEINDACHNER, 1876

One-lined Pencilfish

March 13th, 2012 — 1:23pm

This species has been referred to the genera Poecilobrycon and Nannobrycon in the past and in the aquarium hobby is also known as ‘oneline’ or ‘red fin’ pencilfish. It’s a popular aquarium fish and has an interesting oblique swimming-style, a behavioural trait shared only with N. eques among congeners.

The most recent diagnosis of the species appears to be that giv…

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Nannostomus mortenthaleri PAEPKE & ARENDT, 2001

Coral Red Pencilfish

March 13th, 2012 — 1:23pm

This species is traded under various other names including ‘red arc pencilfish’, ‘Peruvian red pencilfish’, ‘ruby red pencilfish’, ‘red pencilfish’, and Nannostomus cf. marginatus ‘red’.

It was initially described as a subspecies of N. marginatus but can be identified by the following combination of characters: pronounced sexual dimorphism with adult males exhibiting bright red pigmentation between the central…

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Copella arnoldi (REGAN, 1912)

Splash Tetra

March 13th, 2012 — 1:23pm

This species is also known as the ‘spraying’, ‘splashing’ or ‘jumping’ tetra and these names are also sometimes applied to its congeners although none of them exhibit a comparable spawning strategy, simply depositing their eggs among vegetation at or around the water surface.

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Nannostomus trifasciatus STEINDACHNER, 1876

Three-lined Pencilfish

March 13th, 2012 — 1:22pm

Wild populations vary in colour pattern depending on origin, and some populations have previously been described as distinct species.

A form from Peru has a particularly silvery body colour, for example, while another, marketed as ‘super red’ possesses an unusually long red stripe on the body, extending much of the length of the dark central stripe. A population from around Boa Vista in the rio Branco system, Pará state, Brazil has an ocellus o…

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Nannostomus harrisoni EIGENMANN, 1909

Blackstripe Pencilfish

March 13th, 2012 — 1:22pm

This species is quite rare in the aquarium hobby and is not often available in numbers, more often being exported as bycatch among shipments of the congener N. eques.

Following Weitzman and Cobb (1975) it can be diagnosed by the following combin…

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Nannostomus marginatus EIGENMANN, 1909

Dwarf Pencilfish

March 13th, 2012 — 1:22pm

There also exist a number of minor differences in colour pattern between populations. For example some Peruvian forms have yellow pigmentation on the body and fins, and those from Guyana and Suriname possess a short red stripe on vertical scale rows 6-9, above the central dark stripe on the body.

Rio Negro forms have a similar red stripe but overlapping the central dark stripe and extending along most of the flank, while a form from Colombia has an elongate red stripe which is broken in two beneath the dorsal-fi…

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