.........KENDRAPARA: The scientists of Central Institute of Freshwater Aquaculture (ICAR-CIFA), Bhubaneswar have recently found a rare freshwater ornamental fish from a stream near Harishankar in Mahanadi river basin.
The rare ornamental cyprinid fish has been named after Principal Scientist of CIFA Dr Saroj Kanta Swain as parasilorhynchus swaini by Dr Bikram Keshari Baliarsingh. The research, conducted by Baliarsingh on ‘Inventory of Indigenous Ornamental Fishes from Coastal Districts of Odisha’ under the supervision of Dr Swain and Professor of Marine Science, Berhampur University Dr L Nayak, has discovered some of the new species.
Dr Swain said this rare ornamental fish differs from other species of the genus in having elongated and slender body, narrow and slender head, narrow inter orbital space and simple pectoral fin rays. The species belong to Parapsilorhynchus Hora family. The findings of the study have been published in The Indian Journal of Fisheries recently. Residents of riverside villages consume this rare fish due to lack of knowledge and it can be used for ornamental fish trade and export, he added.
The maximum length of the fish is 32 to 42 mm. The species spawned in and around the Mahanadi river and its tributaries. The slender bodied fish prefers fast flowing, shallow and clear water and is found only in unpolluted areas. With discovery of this new species, it is evident that the bio-diversity of the river is rich and worth investigating. The culture of this species would be taken up on a large scale in the institute in future, Swain said.
Under the research, 58 collection points in different sites of Odisha were included for fish diversity and conservation study. The study had catalogued 104 species which belong to 59 genera, 33 families and 10 orders. During the study, two endangered species and 6 near to threatened were found. The most interesting discovery of this study was 24 new records for Similipal Biosphere Reserve and five new species, which were identified and registered by Zoological Survey of India, he added.