New darter tetra discovered

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Brazilian scientists have described a new species of darter tetra in the genus Characidium from southern Brazil.

The new species is named Characidium heirmostigmata by Weferson da Graa and Carla Pavanelli in the latest issue of the journal Neotropical Ichthyology.

Characidium heirmostigmata is known from the upper Paran River drainage in southern Brazil, and is named after the series of black marks on the sides of the body (from the Greek heirmos = series and stigmata = marks).

The new species can be distinguished from other members of the genus except C. serrano in having 8 to 11 incomplete oblique bars on the sides of the body, which extend upwards and downwards from the lateral line and are independent of the 8 or 9 dorsal transverse bars usually are present in Characidium species.

Characidium heirmostigmata differs from C. serrano by a wider body (12.2"15.7% vs. 8.7"11/1% standard length) and having fewer perforated scales on the lateral line (32"35 vs. 37"39).

For more information, see the paper: da Graa, WJ and CS Pavanelli (2008) Characidium heirmostigmata, a new characidiin fish (Characiformes: Crenuchidae) from the upper rio Paran basin, Brazil. Neotropical Ichthyology 6, pp. 53"56.