Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Giant Amazon Fish Species Discovered

A new type of giant Amazonian fish — one for which only a single species was known for more than a century — has been discovered in Brazil, scientists say.

The fish is a new species of arapaima, which are huge freshwater fish native to the Amazon River in Brazil. The discovery suggests there may be important new conservation issues to consider, particularly with regards to overfishing and the region's expanding fish farming industry.

"Everybody for 160 years had been saying there's only one kind of arapaima," Donald Stewart, a professor in the department of environmental and forest biology at the State University of New York in Syracuse, said in a statement. "But we know now there are various species, including some not previously recognized. Each of these unstudied giant fishes needs conservation assessment."

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