New Distribution Records for the Cairns Rainbowfish Cairnsichthys rhombosomoides (Melanotaeniidae): implications for conservation of a restricted northern population
Keith C. Martin and Susan Barclay
aqua, International Journal of Ichthyology, pp. 155-164, Volume 19, Issue 3 – 19 July 2013
Four new locality records for the Cairns Rainbowfish Cairnsichthys rhombosomoides Nichols & Raven, 1928 are documented. The new localities are all outside the known geographical range for this species. Three of the new localities appear to represent part of a disjunct northern population in a biogeographical province where the species was previously unknown. The fourth locality appears to be a minor range extension of the existing known population.
The new localities all contain habitats similar to those found in areas where the core populations of C. rhombosomoides occur and environmental data is provided for all of the newly recorded localities. Specimens from the northern localities are genetically distinct, although they appear morphologically similar to those from the core area of distribution. Cairnsichthys rhombosomoides populations at the new localities have extremely restricted habitat requirements and localised distributions, and therefore may be particularly vulnerable to local perturbations, especially those that may reduce stream flows such as extended droughts and human activities such as surface and ground water extraction.
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