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Fish species discovered in Siang

Pasighat, July 21: The zoology wing of the Jawaharlal Nehru College here in East Siang district said yesterday that it had discovered a rare ornamental fish species — Microphis ignoratus — in one of the tributaries of the Siang.

Researchers here said there have never been recorded sightings of this freshwater pipefish anywhere in India.

This discovery in the Siang, which eventually becomes the Brahmaputra in Assam, highlights the diverse biological nature of the state’s forests and rivers.

The head of the zoology department, Keshav Kumar Jha, said the fish was discovered in one of the tributaries of the Siang, near Sigar village under Mebo subdivision of the district.

Jha said of the 28 species of Microphis, which include pipefish and sea horse, only one species of freshwater pipefish — Microphis deocatus — has been reported from the Indian subcontinent.

Jha’s research, which led to the discovery of this new species, has been published in the African Journal of Advanced Agriculture Research.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature has listed the Microphis ignoratus as an endangered species.