Saturday, January 24, 2009

Lovely new fish swims into science's view

From Sri Lanka's Onlanka News comes this photo of one of the world's newest vertebrates - Puntius kelumi, a freshwater fish with golden scales and delicate fins. The genus, Puntius, is known from several species in the Southeast Asian/Indian region.

COMMENT: One small fish may not be a huge matter to science, but I thought this was worth blogging on as a reminder that not all the significant work done in animal discovery comes out of world-famous labs or universities and equally famous journals. Vertebrates not charismatic enough to make it onto CNN are being described all the time, and in surprising numbers.

Of course, the Web is a huge help to spreading news of such discoveries. Here's one lesser-known site collecting and exchanging information on new fish:

Here's another good example: a collection of all the new species described in just one order (the catfishes, or Siluriformes) in one year (2004). It's part of the global All Catfish Species Inventory project.

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