Two L-number Peckoltia get named

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Loricariid expert Jonathan Armbruster has described two new species of Peckoltia in a study of the genus recently published in the journal Zootaxa.

The two new species are named Peckoltia caenosa and Peckoltia lineola, and are distinguished from congeners by their colour pattern.

Peckoltia caenosa is unique in having dark vermiculations on the abdomen, the dorsal and lateral surfaces of the head and body mottled and small spots on the head forming vermiculations.

This species is known from the llanos of Venezuela draining the middle Orinoco River, where it is found in slow-flowing muddy streams (the name caenosa comes from the Latin for muddy, referring to its mottled colour and its preference for muddy habitats).

Peckoltia caenosa by Jonathan Armbruster.

Peckoltia lineola is distinguished from congeners in having thick vermiculations and large spots on the head and snout, lacking an orange band on the dorsal fin, with dark bands on the fins and thick longitudinal lines on the abdomen.

This species is known from the Ventuari and Inirid rivers in Venezuela and Colombia respectively, where it is found in rocky riffles. Its name comes from the Latin for little line, referring to the short lines on the head.

According to German expert Ingo Seidel, Peckoltia caenosa is believed to be LDA20/LDA21 and P. lineola L202/LDA57/LDA79 in the aquarium trade.

The study also redefines Peckoltia in a study of the phylogenetic relationships of the Hypostominae.

The genus is restricted to only 12 species: P. bachi, P. braueri, P. brevis, P. caenosa, P. cavatica, P. furcata. P. lineola, P. multispinis, P. oligospila, P. vermiculata and P. vittata.

With a number of the species previously placed in Peckoltia now reassigned to Hemiancistrus, Armbruster notes that he phenetic definitions of Peckoltia and Hemiancistrus are unsatisfactory for many reasons, but the current analysis offers no clues as to how to break up the genera or combine them... and that or the stability of the other genera and to avoid introducing yet more genus names into the overcrowded Ancistrini, it seems best at this time to recognize two potentially paraphyletic genera (Peckoltia and Hemiancistrus) and to await molecular and perhaps more complex morphological analyses...

For more information, see the paper: Armbruster, JW (2008) The genus Peckoltia with the description of two new species and a reanalysis of the phylogeny of the genera of the Hypostominae (Siluriformes: Loricariidae). Zootaxa 1822, pp. 1"76.

Thanks to Shane Linder and Jonathan Armbruster for supplying the images of these fish.