New species - Caelatoglanis zonatus


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A new species of erethistid catfish found in the Ataran River in Myanmar is so different from previously known species that it's been placed in a new genus.

Unlike other known members of the family Eristhistidae, the new catfish a heavily pleated (or plicate) top lip, and is equipped with a thoracic adhesive organ made up of longitudinal folds and pleats of skin which form a disc allowing it to stick to rocks in fast flowing water.

The catfish, which has been named Caelotoglanis zonatus by Maurice Kottelat and Heok Hee Ng, was found in the Tenasserim area of the Ataran river in north of the Malay Peninsula.

The area, which has recently seen a rise in aquarium fish exports, along with a number of newly discovered fish, is still relatively unexplored ichthyologically, so there are currently many new and previously unseen fish from the region on sale in the UK.

Interestingly, Ng and Kottelat also mention what they believe could be a case of mimicry between this new species and another catfish, Akysis vespa, which was described by Kottelat a few years ago and has been on sale here at some specialist outlets.

The authors also say that Laguvia has become an objective junior synonym of Hara, taking its name out of general use.

For more details on identifying this new erethistid see the paper: Ng, HH and Kottelat, M. (2005) - Caetoglanis zonatus, a new genus and species of Eresthistidae (Teleostei: Siluriformes) from Myanmar, with comments on the nomenclature of Laguvia and Hara species. Ichthyological Exploration of Freshwaters. Vol. 16. No. 1. pp 13-22.