The species is described based on specimens collected through exploration of the river from Mettur dam, and in the upstream of Shivanasamudra falls, Chamarajanagar, Karnataka.
The ICAR-National Bureau of Fish Genetic Resources, Lucknow has discovered a new catfish species of the genus Pangasius (Valenciennes, 1840), from the river Cauvery, in peninsular India and named as P icaria.
The species is described based on specimens collected through exploration of the river from Mettur dam, and in the upstream of Shivanasamudra falls, Chamarajanagar, Karnataka. Pangasius icaria is named after the parent organisation Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and uses its abbreviated form.
The researchers used extensive morphological analysis, skeleton radiography and advanced molecular markers combined with species delimitation computational techniques to conclude that the Pangasius specimens from river Cauvery are distinct from other species of genus Pangasius and named as P icaria.
The new species can be distinguished from its congeners, known from south and southeast Asia, by presence of widely placed, small rounded vomerine and palatine tooth plates, longer maxillary and mandibular barbels, more vertebrae count and smaller caudal peduncle depth.
This discovery is a new opportunity for future research on conservation of the species and evaluation of the new fish genetic resources for its characteristics and utilisation potential.