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One of the largest freshwater fish is the Arapaima which lives in Tropical South America in a region between Brazil and Guyana. They can grow to a length of three metres and can weigh a massive 200 kilograms. They are unique fish since they breathe through a primitive form of lungs. They tend to live in oxygen-poor backwaters.Inhabitants of the Amazon region have been long dependent on the Arapaima and they are being hunted in large numbers, leading to fears that they could be hunted to the levels which will make the species endangered.The Arapaima was believed to be of only one type, but a new species has been discovered. The discovery is important, since it hints at the wide diversity of the Arapaima and also points out to the importance of more study on the species.The research was headed by Donald Stewart and he said,Cheap Soccer Jerseys Free Shipping, “It brings attention to the diversity of arapaima that is out there and that needs to be collected and studied. Hopefully it will get more people in Brazil looking more closely at what’s swimming around out there.”It was a belief that there is only one species of Arapaima, but Stewart has revealed that there are five different and distinct species of the giant freshwater fish.The newest species, Arapaima leptosoma, had not been suspected before. Its body is more willowy than other arapaima. It bears an exclusive horizontal black bar on the side of its head, which is a distinctive series of sensory organs.The specific name leptosoma derives from the Greek leptos (slender) and soma (body),Wholesale Jerseys Free Shipping, in reference to the relatively slender body form.The new species is “distinguished from all other Arapaima by following three characters: dorsal most lateralis sensory cavity on preopercle extremely slender; ventrolateral margin of head where third infraorbital meets anterior limb of preopercle strongly angled such that ventral surface of head is almost flat; and anterior third of dorsal-fin base covered with an enlarged, thickened sheath that hides anterior dorsal-fin rays when appressed,Cheap NFL Jerseys,” Prof Stewart described the new species in a paper published in the journal Copeia.The only known specimen of Arapaima leptosoma was caught in 2001 near the confluence of the Solimões and Purus rivers in Amazonas State, Brazil.“Collecting adult Arapaima involves considerable difficulties, both with logistics in the field and subsequent storage in museums,Cheap Jerseys Store,” Prof Stewart wrote in the paper.“As this study demonstrates, however, collecting at least a few voucher specimens can greatly enhance our knowledge of these fascinating fishes. Many more are needed.”“Arapaima have high economic,Cheap NFL Jerseys China, cultural, and scientific value,Cheap NFL Jerseys China, but their diversity has been overlooked for too long,” the scientist concluded.(Sources: The Pentagon Post; Sci News.com)
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