Laimosemion paryagi (Cyprinodontiformes: Aplocheiloidei: Rivulidae), a new species from the upper Mazaruni river drainage of Western Guyana

F. B. M. Vermeulen, W. H. Suijker and G. E. Collier

aqua, International Journal of Ichthyology, pp. 181-190, Volume 18, Issue 4 – 15 October 2012


Laimosemion paryagi, new species, is described from the upper Mazaruni river system, a tributary of the Essequibo River. It is a member of the Laimosemion breviceps group former known as the Rivulus breviceps group, and shares a robust body and deep caudal peduncle with Laimosemion breviceps (Eigenmann, 1909) and Laimosemion lyricauda (Thomerson et al., 1991) and to a lesser degree with L. gransabanae (Lasso et al., 1992) and Laimosemion torrenticola (Vermeulen & Isbrücker, 2000). These species are all endemic to the Guiana Highlands in western Guyana and the neighbouring Gran Sabana in Eastern Venezuela. It is distinguished from other species in the L. breviceps group by morphology and its remarkable male color pattern of red blotches on a turquoise ground color on the flanks and in the unpaired fins and having a rounded caudal fin as opposed to one having extension or being spade shaped. Analysis of mitochondrial DNA sequence reveals that it is genetically distinct from all other members of this group and that inhabitants of the Guyana highlands diverged from each other early in the history of the genus, commensurate with the geological age of the Guiana Shield.

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