A new species of Pictichromis (Pisces: Pseudochromidae) from western New Guinea with a redescription of P. aurifrons

Gerald R. Allen, Anthony C. Gill and Mark V. Erdmann

aqua, International Journal of Ichthyology, pp. 145-154, Volume 13, Issue 3-4 – 23 January 2008


The coral reef fish previously known as Pictichromis aurifrons is shown to consist of two species including P. caitlinae, which is described as new based on eight specimens, 26.3-42.6 mm SL, from Cenderawasih Bay, western New Guinea. Although both species are known only from New Guinea, the two are geographically separated by approximately 2,700 km of coastline. They share a characteristic yellow snout and forehead, but differ in several other colour pattern features. The most obvious difference is the general hue of the body, which is bright magenta in P. caitlinae and light purple to bluish grey in P. aurifrons. The gradation between the two basic colours is relatively gradual in P. aurifrons in contrast to the abrupt transition in P. caitlinae. A redescription of P. aurifrons, originally described on the basis of a single specimen, is included as well as a key to the species of Pictichromis.

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