New species may be smallest in world


Quick, call Norris McWhirter!

Scientists from the Australian Museum believe that they have found a new contender for the Guiness Book of Records' title of world's smallest fish.

The Stout infantfish, Schindleria brevipinguis, is several millimetres smaller than the previous record holder, Trimmatom nanus.

Fully grown at a mere 8.4mm, and a tiny 1mg in weight, the new paedomorphic gobioid species has just been described today in the Australian Museum's Research Journal. Trimmatom nanus grows to a comparatively large 10mm.

The new species is currently known only from the Lizard Island area of the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland. However, as with T. nanus, it's possible that the species has gone undetected elsewhere because it's so easy to overlook or confuse with a fry.

For more details see: Watson, W. & H.J. Walker Jr. (2004) - The world's smallest vertebrate, Schindleria brevipinguis, a new paedomorphic species in the family Schindleriidae (Perciformes: Gobioidei). Records of the Australian Museum. 56(2): 139-142.