A new species of dwarf elephant nose morymrid has been described from the Ivindo River in Gabon, West Central Africa.
John Sullivan and Carl Hopkins of Cornell University and the American Museum of Natural History described the new species of osteoglossomorph fish as Stomatorhinus ivindoensis in a paper in the latest issue of the systematics journal Zootaxa.
Like other members of the Stomatorhinus genus, S. ivindoensis has an elongated trunk and produces small electrical discharges which are believed to be used for signalling and navigation in murky water.
The fish is one of the smallest known members of the Mormyridae family, with the typical adults collected measuring just 56mm/2.2" in length.
Only Stomatorhinus fuliginosus is comparable in size to the new species, with adults around the 5cm mark. Most other Stomatorhinus are around 10cm in length.
There are currently 12 other species in this elephant nose genus, including: Stomatorhinus ater, Stomatorhinus corneti, Stomatorhinus fuliginosus, Stomatorhinus humilior, Stomatorhinus kununguensis, Stomatorhinus microps, Stomatorhinus patrizii, Stomatorhinus polli, Stomatorhinus polylepis, Stomatorhinus puncticulatus, Stomatorhinus schoutedeni and Stomatorhinus walkeri.
The paper includes a full description of the new species and explains how to tell it apart from related species of Stomatorhinus.
For further information see: Sullivan, JP and CD Hopkins (2005) - A new Stomatorhinus (Osteoglossomorpha: Mormyridae) from the Ivindo River, Gabon, West Central Africa. Zootaxa 847: 1-23.