Two new loricariids named

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American scientists have described two new species of loricariid catfish of the genus Pseudancistrus.

Publishing their results in the latest issue of the journal Ichthyological Exploration of Freshwaters, Nathan Lujan, Jonathan Armbruster and Mark Sabaj have named the two new species from southern Venezuela Pseudancistrus pectegenitor and P. yekuana.

Pseudancistrus pectegenitor is known from the upper Ro Orinoco river drainage, and can be distinguished from other members of the genus in having 10"11 dorsal-fin rays and adpressed cheek odontodes reaching to three or more plates beyond the opercle in adults.

The species is named after both the very prominent odontodes on the snout, pectoral spine and evertible cheek plates and the fact that males observe brood care in this species (in Latin, pecten=quill and genitor=father).

Pseudancistrus pectengenitor lives in the main channel of rivers, among large rock outcrops.

The second species, Pseudancistrus yekuana, is named after the Ye-kuana, the indiginous peoples inhabiting the upper Ro Ventuari, where the fish is found.

It differs from other members of the genus in having dentary papillae, the lower lip reaching to the middle of the pectoral girdle, and the pectoral spin maximally reaching the posterior edge of the pelvic-fin spine when adpressed ventral to the pelvic fin.

Pseudancistrus yekuana appears to be a species that matures at a small size, with the largest specimen collected at only 43 mm SL.

There are 12 other valid species of Pseudancistrus recognised, of which only two (P. coquenani and P. orinoco) share the presence of dentary papillae with the two new species.

For more information, see the paper: Lujan, NK, JW Armbruster and MH Sabaj (2007) Two new species of Pseudancistrus from southern Venezuela (Siluriformes: Loricariidae). Ichthyological Exploration of Freshwaters 18, 163"174.