New species of banjo catfish described


Brazilian ichthyologists have described a new species of banjo catfish from the Tocantins-Araguaia river system in the latest issue of the journal Neotropical Ichthyology.

Naming the new species Xyliphius anachoretes for its rarity (only two specimens were found and the Greek anachoretes means "one that retired from the world"), Carlos Figueiredo and Marcelo Britto distinguish it from congeners by the presence of six developed retrorse serrae on posterior border of pectoral-fin spine, presence of papillae with minute branches on the lower lip, and only two dorsal procurrent caudal-fin rays.

Xyliphius is a banjo catfish that is not often encountered, typically being found buried in the sand or gravel substrate in fast-flowing streams (the type locality has been drowned by the Cana Brava Dam), and the authors suspect that the present conditions of this portion of the upper Tocantins River does not support viable populations of the new banjo catfish at its type locality.

For more information, see the paper: Figueiredo, CA and MR Britto (2010) A new species of Xyliphius, a rarely sampled banjo catfish (Siluriformes: Aspredinidae) from the rio Tocantins-Araguaia system. Neotropical Ichthyology 8, pp. 105–112.