New African darter named Nannocharax signifer


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A new species of African darter has been described from Benin in a recent issue of the journal Ichthyological Exploration of Freshwaters.

The new tetra, named Nannocharax signifer by ichthyologist Timo Moritz, is distinguished from West African congeners by the red-orange colour on the front part of its dorsal fin.  

The new species, known from only the Ouémé River drainage in Benin, is named after the distinct patch of red-orange on the dorsal fin (Latin signifer=standard bearer).  

The type locality is a forested stream with a substrate of mud, sand, leaves, roots and driftwood.  Water parameters were: temperature 28.0°C, conductivity 46 μS, pH 7.0 and 5.5 mg/l oxygen.

The combination of the following characters further distinguish this species: interrupted black band along the flanks, multiple x-shaped markings on the lower half of the flanks, 46–48 (usually 47) lateral line scales, and 4–5 scales between the anus and the origin of the anal fin.

For more information, see the paper: Moritz, T (2009) Nannocharax signifer, a new species of fish (Characiformes: Distichodontidae) from the Ouémé River basin, Benin. Ichthyological Exploration of Freshwaters 20, pp. 289–294.